Plane Camping Tips
Winds have been clocked at over 80mph at Burning Man. Do not be the pilot with a cartwheeling plane and airborne tent this year. Don’t even think of scrimping on tie-downs! Here are several sources for manufactured tie-downs that other Burning Man pilots use. Interceptors have heavy hammers you can use to pound in your tie-down stakes.
What to Bring and How Much Does that Thing Weigh?
- Box your gear in clear bins with latching lids so contents visible without opening
- Write bin weights on tape affixed to bins so load weight and balance easier
- Use a tent that can be sealed against dust – avoid tents with screens
- Sleep on stacked backpacking mats to protect against hard cold playa floor, ~6 lbs
- Sleeping bag good to 30° f or below, ~12 lbs
- Place ground cover under tent, ~1 lb
- Rebar/heavy stakes for the tent, lit and capped with tennis balls or other safety covering
- 1.5 gal of water per person, per day, and food – don’t forget to eat and drink electrolytes
- Toiletries, linens, a shallow plastic bin to wash in, lotion, sunscreen, first aid kit, tooth paste other personal sundries, ~4.5 lbs
- Saline eye drops and nose spray to rinse out playa
- Clothing, costumes, goggles, hats, footwear, scarves, goat fur leggings, yeti mask, ~24 lbs
- Rebar and aircraft tie-Downs for both wings and the tail, capped and lit for safety
- Aircraft covers for Pitot tube, engine
- Survival gear, spare oil, rags, some tools, parts, spare tailwheel, ~28 lbs
- Pilot junk, charts, approach plates, manuals, kneeboard spot transmitter, handheld radio, extra batteries, helmet, 3 headsets, (barf bags if you gift rides), Portable O2; ~21 lbs
- Two folding chairs & table, solar lantern so you can be sociable out there, ~20 lbs
- Spare plane key hidden someplace on the plane
What not to Bring
Not all aircraft can haul heavy loads, especially at a high hot place like Black Rock Desert. Flying to Burning Man is fun, but it’s not to die for. Be careful. Be prepared. Plan enough fuel to leave Burning Man with VFR reserves. Nearest fuel is 65 NM, unless you procure fuel independently on the playa.
Leave this stuff behind before you fly to Burning Man. Black Rock Airport is a Private Airport on Federal Public Land.
- Illegal substances
- Prohibited items such as fireworks and firearms
(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, no person may operate a civil aircraft within the United States with knowledge that narcotic drugs, marihuana, and depressant or stimulant drugs or substances as defined in Federal or State statutes are carried in the aircraft.
(b) Paragraph (a) of this section does not apply to any carriage of narcotic drugs, marihuana, and depressant or stimulant drugs or substances authorized by or under any Federal or State statute or by any Federal or State agency.
Transporting these items can lead to confiscation and forfeiture of your private aircraft. Intoxicating substances like drugs and alcohol are known flight hazards. Don’t imbibe and fly at or around Burning Man. Now be sensible and have fun!