How to choose where to camp?

Before you go one step further… before reading a single paragraph beyond this ONE… ask yourself if you understand what you are getting yourself into? It is not a matter how many cool things you saw in videos, saw pictures on flckr, or scanned through web sites. As much as Burning Man may be on your Bucket List… do everyone a favor and go through the check list immediately below this… then proceed.

Survival Guide | First Timers Guide | JRS | Recommended Reads

So, now you are ready to gain the title Burner
(without the *irgin)

Before you go head first into the Burner culture educate yourself about what it means. You may not buy into the 10 principles 100% or see the value in them, but better believe a majority of the people around you do. These 10 principles are about community – period.

Without getting into the sacredityness of these concepts and your need to protect what they embody, focus on your survival in the desert. “Piss clear” is a guide and not just a funny annotation. These are things that are covered in the survival guide which – of course – by now you have read.

Solo / With Friends / Theme Camp

What is your choice? Whether a long ranger or not this will give you one hell of an experience. It is very wise to educate yourself before going to Burning Man and the first thing you should do is find out what community there is in your local area. Burning Man has a pretty comprehensive network and a chance to experience a taste of being in the desert through participation in Regional events and Pre-Compressions that go on through the months leading up to the big burn.


Going at it alone is definitely a rite of passage that can be very rewarding. Not only as just having done it … but it also provides you the opportunity of an unwritten script and a chance to be free of any commitments beyond your own LNT and basic survival. Just don’t be a Sparkle Pony, take care of your own shit, and experience all those things that bring joy to your own heart whatever that might be. Leave expectations behind and run with scissors.

With Friends

This can be rewarding and challenging at the same time, too. We love our friends, but can you live with them for X number of days? Will you leave as friends still? Can you count on each other to work as a family on those days out there?

The playa will throw those challenges in front of you and be aware of this before going on and be strong enough to let go.

Bottom line leave those expectation behind in the default world and be prepared to see people do or act in ways they would not when constrained by the rules of the norm. This is a place of expression and shedding of the strains of everyday life.

Theme Camps

Having a community around you can provide a sense of safety and togetherness that has it’s own rewards when on the playa. Often this can stem out of remaining part of the geographic community you are on playa with. This stems out of the relationships you are building locally, but you may want to take part with someone with a really cool concept.

Looking through our Queer Theme Camps section on this site will provide you some great opportunities to be a part of some great concepts and help make these awesome projects come to life. They are like works of art and entertainment unto themselves.

Act now… because you (who are shopping) have a unique chance to join camps that probably would not be welcoming new Burgins. The ticket fiasco wrought by Burning Man HQ this year changed the landscape and a lot of people who might not have normally received tickets have them now.


Leave those at home or outside the fence. Come with a blank slate and do not try to fit in by stressing out over costumes or having a tu-tu for Tu-Tu Tuesday – for example. In your first year, keep it simple.


This and our facebook are great places to post your questions and connect with Queer identified camps. Whether it is with boys, girl or in transition… there is a group of friends waiting to welcome you.

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