Pilot Advisory

Black Rock City Municipal Airport

2018 Pilot Advisory

Last Revised 6/11/18, with ongoing updates expected through June/July

 

Table of Contents

General Airport Rules

Overview

Dates & Hours

Airport Flight Information

Prohibited

Prior Approval

Charter / For-Hire Flights

Weather

Airspace

Landmarks / GPS Coordinates

Runway Closures

Ground Stops

Medevac Operations

General Safety

Preflight Planning Checklist

Arrivals and Departures

88NV Radio Frequencies

23L & 23R In Use

5L & 5R In Use

Go-Arounds

Landing

Taxiing & Parking

Taxi In

Parking – General Aviation

Parking – Burner Express Air

Taxi Out

Customs

Gate Processing

Escorting Responsibilities

Pilot Briefing

Content

Verification

Scenic Flights

Scenic Pattern Altitude (SPA)

Scenic Reporting Points

Before Takeoff

Scenic Pattern

Scenic Transition

Scenic & Go (Arrive & Depart from Elsewhere)

Other Operations

Ultralight

Helicopters

Skydiving

Drones

Links & Downloads

Links

Downloads

 

Welcome

Black Rock City Municipal Airport (BRCMA), FAA identifier 88NV, is a private-use airport operated by Black Rock City, LLC on land owned by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Its mission is to allow participants to fly into the Burning Man event and to facilitate opportunities for gifting, participation, community and self-expression as articulated in the Burning Man 10 Principles.

Your participation is what makes 88NV the special place that it is. Please help us preserve our airport by carefully reading and observing the rules and procedures set forth in this document.


General Airport Rules

Overview

This Pilot Advisory shall serve as the published Airport Rules and Regulations to fly into Burning Man for 2018. All pilots that use the 88NV must agree to and abide by the rules and procedures set forth in this document to ensure safe operation. Failure to comply with any of these requirements, Federal regulations, or not operating in a safe and cooperative manner may result in revocation of permission to use the airport, expulsion from the event, or law enforcement action.

 

Any questions regarding the airport rules set forth in this pilot advisory can be made to AirOperations@burningman.org.

BLM Closure Order

As part of the Burning Man permit with BLM, all pilots that wish to fly to Burning Man must land on the runways designated for 88NV and comply with all airport rules. Landing anywhere else inside the closure order is prohibited. Descriptions and maps of the closure order will be included in the Links & Downloads section of this document once it has been published.

 

Permission for Use of the Private Airport

As this is a private airport, all pilots must obtain permission to use it. Before departing for 88NV, pilots must register online and complete a test in order to get permission to land. Permission will be issued verbally by the Arrivals frequency after verification of the pilot’s individual code issued upon completion of the test.

 

Additionally, pilots must receive a safety briefing after they land in order to take off again. Taking off without a safety briefing automatically revokes permission for any further use of the airport. All pilots are required to have a minimum of a Private Pilot or Sport Pilot certificate for safety and liability reasons.

 

Event Tickets Are Required to Land

All pilots and passengers are required to have a ticket in-hand or documentation of a Will Call confirmation to land at 88NV. Any requests to land without a ticket must be made prior to August 1st with a detailed explanation. Pilots within the Burner Express Air (BxA) program are exempt from having a ticket.

 

Announcements & Discussion Group

88NV has three email lists, Airport-Announce, Aviator-Announce, and Aviator-List. The Airport-Announce is for announcements regarding general airport updates and volunteer information. The Aviator-Announce is for announcements regarding flying into 88NV and is mandatory for receiving updates to this Pilot Advisory and compliance to the airport rules and procedures. The Aviators-List is a discussion group open to anyone wishing to discuss a range of topics associated with aviation, Burning Man, or flying into 88NV.

 

To subscribe to a list, send a blank email to:

  1. airport-announce+subscribe@burningman.org
  2. aviators-announce+subscribe@burningman.org
  3. aviators-list+subscribe@burningman.org
BLM Closure Dates TBD (Published in July)
Airport Operational Dates August 22, 2018 – September 3, 2018
Burning Man Event Dates August 26, 2018 – September 2, 2018
Airport/Runway Operating Hours 06:00 PDT to 18:30 PDT*

 

*The airport is a day VFR airport and its operational hours will be dictated by ensuring no operations take place after staffed hours or for safety reasons. Because the box office closes at 18:30 PDT, pilots and/or passengers new to the event are not permitted to land past 18:00 PDT. Ultralight operations are permitted to operate from sunrise to sunset.

 

Early Arrival

All takeoffs and landings must occur during the operational dates and operating hours listed. Any requests to takeoff or land outside of these designated dates must be made prior to August 1st with proposed date and time, reason for the early arrival, and confirmation of a Work Access Pass (WAP).

Night Operations

All night operations are strictly prohibited with the exception of medevac aircraft only.

 

Airport Flight Information

FAA Airport Identifier 88NV
Airport Coordinates 40°45’51.8″N 119°12’40.0″W
Field Elevation 3904’ MSL
Runways 23L / 05R – 6,000’ x 75’ using cones

23R / 05L – 6,000’ x 75’ using cones

23L and 5L Designated for Landing

23R and 5R Designated for Takeoff

Surface Conditions Dry alkaline lake bed. Small dunes of powdery, sand-like soil. Runways and taxi areas conditioned by watering.
Airspace Class G underlying a MOA
Traffic Pattern Directions 23L & 23R – Left Traffic

5L & 5R – Right Traffic

Traffic Pattern Altitude (TPA) 5,000’ MSL for aircraft less than 120 knots

5,500’ MSL for aircraft greater than 120 knots

Scenic Pattern Altitude (SPA) 5,500’ MSL for aircraft less than 120 knots

6,000’ MSL for aircraft greater than 120 knots

7,000’ MSL for aircraft arriving from outside the area

Frequencies 134.7 – Black Rock Arrivals

122.9 – CTAF / Unicom

118.35 – Black Rock Ground (Parking/Departures)

121.05 – BxA Ramp

128.8 – Oakland Center (>10,000 MSL)

Fuel Pre-event community purchase done through the Aviator-List.

 

Prohibited

The airspace can at times be extremely congested with multiple operations taking place at once. The following aircraft and operations are prohibited for the safety of all airport users as well as pedestrians within the city.

 

  • Landing without Permission from Arrivals
  • Taking Off without a Pilot Briefing
  • Night Operations
  • Student Pilot Solo
  • Flight Training
  • Touch & Go’s / Stop & Go’s
  • Low Approaches
  • Gliders & Glider Towing
  • Banner Towing
  • Aircraft without Two-Way Communication
  • Aircraft with Capacity of 30 Passengers or More

 

Prior Approval

The following operations are prohibited unless specifically approved in writing by Airport Management.

All detailed requests and applicable safety precautions must be made prior to August 1st.

  • Landing without an Event Ticket or Will Call Confirmation
  • Charter / For-Hire Flights
  • Aircraft Over 12,500 Gross Weight or Wingspan Over 60 Feet
  • Flying Inside the City Perimeter Fence
  • Formation Flying
  • Hot Loading/Unloading
  • Hot Air Balloons
  • Drones (inside the fence)
  • Skydiving

 

Charter / For-Hire Flights

All charter/for-hire flights that fall under 14 CFR Part 135 must register with the Burner Express Air (BxA) program in order to provide services to or from 88NV. BxA is a Burning Man sponsored program in an effort to support alternative transportation for event participants and reduce traffic congestion on Highway 447. BxA coordinates scheduling, ticket bookings, Special Recreations Permits (SRP), and satisfies BLM insurance requirements of all charter/for-hire flights. Click here to learn more.

Weather

Weather in the Black Rock Desert can be challenging and unforecasted. Please always have a diversionary plan ready should you not be able to land. Two weather stations exist at Black Rock City, one at 88NV and one within the city itself. There are various ways to access them on and off the playa. Please note, that during periods of high use or WiFi signal interference may make obtaining current conditions unreliable.

  • Text “C” for current conditions or “M” for METAR to 775-442-0739.
  • Weather Underground station “88NV” or “Black Rock City.”
  • Contact any 88NV aviation frequency listed in this advisory.

Airspace

Aircraft aloft are governed by FAA class G airspace from the surface up to 1,200’ Above Ground Level (AGL). FAA class E airspace applies from 1,200’ AGL to 18,000’ Mean Sea Level (MSL). In addition, a Military Operating Area (MOA), or area of high military aircraft activity, overlies 88NV from 13,000’ MSL up to 18,000’ MSL. Military aircraft regularly fly through the area without warning.

All scenic flights directly over the city are prohibited due to skydiving performances as high as 14,000 MSL.

 

Landmarks / GPS Coordinates

88NV (Elevation 3904’ MSL) 40°45’51.8″N 119°12’40.0″W
Frog Pond 40°44’48.2″N 119°10’24.3″W
Razorback Mountain (Peak 5650’ MSL) 40°44’36.5″N 119°08’33.5″W
Black Rock City (The Man) 40°47’11.04”N, 119°12’23.4”W
Gerlach 40°39’13.0″N 119°21’22.6″W
Empire 40°34’38.6″N 119°20’28.2″W

 

Runway Closures

Airport Closure

Airport closures will be announced on all the airport frequencies and via the Aviator-Announce email list. Airport staff will attempt to advise all traffic with an estimate of when to expect the runways to reopen. Please monitor your fuel situation and divert as necessary to comply with FAA fuel requirements 14 CFR 91.151.

For aircraft wishing to remain in the area until the airport is open, plan on entering the Scenic Pattern. Once the airport is reopened, all aircraft in the Scenic Pattern are required to comply with the procedures in the Scenic Transition.

Single Runway Operation

The airport may revert to single runway operations for operational needs. Announcement of amended procedures will be announced on all airport frequencies. All aircraft are to adhere to standard right of way rules stated in 14 CFR 91.113. Please note, aircraft that takeoff may generate a significant amount of dust in low wind conditions that will impair visibility for landing aircraft.

 

Ground Stops

Whenever the advisory tower announces a “Ground Stop”, all aircraft must stop motion of the aircraft while on the ground. Aircraft are permitted to land as long as they have a visual of the landing runway and determine it to be safe, but must stop immediately after exiting the runway.

 

Regardless of whether a Ground Stop is issued, any aircraft that encounters zero visibility due to dust must come to a complete stop and notify the Ground frequency immediately with a PIREP. If prolonged white out conditions are expected, plan on shutting down the engine and notifying the Ground of your location until visibility returns or airport staff can escort the aircraft back to the parking area with a “follow me.” Always stay with your aircraft when outside of the parking ramp.

Medevac Operations

Whenever medevac operations are announce, all aircraft must give way to the medevac aircraft. It is at the discretion of the tower to announce a Ground Stop to ensure medevac operations are given priority.

General Safety

Flying into 88NV for Burning Man presents a higher than normal risk. The following factors should be considered prior to flying to Burning Man and landing at 88NV.

  • Hypoxia
  • Dehydration
  • High Density Altitude
  • Degraded Depth Perception
  • Strong Gusting Winds
  • Turbulence due to High Temperatures
  • Sudden Storms
  • Sudden Whiteouts Due to Playa Dust
  • Uncontrolled Airspace
  • High Volume of Traffic
  • Disorientation Due to First-Time 88NV Users
  • Soft-Field Operations
  • Mountain Flying
  • Remote Location
  • Unreliable Cell & WiFi Service

 

Information on past accidents is useful for anticipating common risks and can be found on the following wiki page and searching the NTSB Registry for 88NV or Gerlach, NV.

 

If you see an aircraft operating unsafely or violating any of the rules in this advisory, in the interest of safety, please notify either the advisory tower or the safety supervisor on the ramp.

 

Preflight Planning Checklist

The following are the steps required to fly in to 88NV.

  • Familiarize Yourself with this Pilot Advisory
  • Register To Fly In (Registry In Development)
  • Complete the Online Pilot Training/Test (Test In Development)
  • Note Your “Pilot Code” Upon Test Completion
  • Print All 88NV Charts and Diagrams (Charts In Development)
  • Join the Aviator-Announce Email List for Updates Here.
  • Attend a Mandatory On-Playa Pilot Briefing Prior to Takeoff

 

The following must be onboard the aircraft upon arrival at 88NV:

  • Pilot Code (To be announced on arrivals and departures)
  • All Airport Diagrams and Charts
  • Pilot Certificate & Medical Certificate
  • Airworthiness Certificate, Registration, Operators Handbook, and W&B.
  • Event Ticket Or Will Call Ticket Confirmation
  • Work Access Pass (For early entry)
  • Airport Management Exception Form (If prior approval issue required)

 

The FAA will be in attendance at the event and will be performing Ramp Checks with a focus on weight and balance. To ensure you will not be penalized, you can review AOPA’s guidance on ramp checks here or the FAA’s Ramp Check Standards here.

Arrivals and Departures

 

88NV Radio Frequencies

Arrivals – 134.7

Initial contact to the airport should be done to “Black Rock Arrivals” on frequency 134.7 outside of 10 miles (approximately the distance of Gerlach). This announcement should include the following.

  • Tail Number or BxA Flight Number
  • “Inbound to Land,” “Scenic to Land,” or “Scenic & Go”
  • Pilot Code

The Arrivals radio operator will verify the code and advise, “You have permission to land,” as well as provide a weather report and active runway. Switch to the CTAF/Unicom frequency and begin position reporting.

Example:

A/C: Black Rock Arrivals, N12345, Scenic to Land with code XXXXXX.

BRA: N12345 you have permission to use 88NV. Runway 27L currently in use, moderate winds out of the SW, temperature 100°F, altimeter 29.92. Welcome home.

 

Any aircraft that lands without permission from the Black Rock Arrivals is considered in violation of the BLM Closure Order. Such aircraft will be viewed as trespassing on BLM land and may be subject to law enforcement action.

 

CTAF/Unicom – 122.9

Pilots shall self-announce on CTAF/Unicom to “Black Rock Traffic.” If addressing the advisory tower, pilots shall specifically address “Black Rock Unicom.” All position reports for non-controlled airports shall be standard unless otherwise advised in this advisory. Pilots intending to land are permitted to use their own discretion on how often to perform position reports depending on the congestion of the pattern and the radio frequency. Please keep radio transmissions brief and clear and do not tie up the frequencies. These position reports should include the following:

  • Callsign/Description – Color and distinctive feature (i.e. White High Wing). Larger aircraft announce make and model (i.e. Beech 1900).
  • Position
  • Altitude
  • Intentions

 

Examples:

A/C: Black Rock Unicom, white and blue high wing, 10 miles to the SW, 7000, scenic to land.

A/C: Black Rock Traffic, Beech 1900 entering on the 45, 6500 feet.

A/C: Black Rock Traffic, helicopter, short final breaking off for the helipad.

 

Unicom operators will attempt to keep radio calls to a minimum and only announce any significant changes to the operations such as runway closures or events pertaining to aircraft in the pattern. Upon request, Unicom will provide an estimate of number of aircraft in the traffic pattern or scenic pattern, runway in use, weather, and NOTAMs. If it is felt the Unicom operator is being too talkative or providing too much “instruction” on the radio, pilots have priority of the radio usage and are permitted to ask Unicom to “keep the chatter down.”

 

Note, the advisory tower has the authority to revoke any aircraft’s permission to land or use the airport if it is determined that a pilot is flying unsafely.

 

Ground – 118.35

After landing, contact “Black Rock Ground” immediately after exiting the runway to advise your taxi intentions and parking preferences (See Parking). The Ground operator will assign a parking spot if you are a first time arrival. BxA aircraft landing on 23L may defer a taxi call on the Ground frequency due to the short distance to the parking area and immediately contact BxA Ramp for parking instructions.

 

For GA aircraft that are outbound, contact “Black Rock Ground” either prior to startup or during taxi out and provide the following information and intentions.

  • Tail Number
  • Pilot Code
  • “Depart and Return,” “Final Departure,” or “Scenic Pattern”

 

The Ground operator will provide weather or NOTAMs and verify the pilot taking off has had their mandatory safety briefing.

As with any uncontrolled airport, taxiing position reports are not required but are highly encouraged depending on congestion on the radio.

BxA Ramp – 121.05

Aircraft registered with BxA are to contact “BxA Ramp” in lieu of Ground for parking instructions only. Taxi announcements shall still be on Ground. The BxA ramp operator will assign parking spots to inbound aircraft. BxA aircraft preparing to depart shall contact BxA Ramp for permission to start engines.

23L & 23R In Use

 

Approach From South

Fly over Empire, along the mountain ridge to the east, and intercept and follow the railroad tracks for the left downwind.

 

Approach from All Other Directions

Approach the city at 7000’ MSL. Remain outside of the polygon shaped city perimeter fence and circle clockwise. Exit the Scenic pattern between Point 3 & Point 4 and enter the traffic pattern via the Scenic Transition.

 

Scenic to Land

From over Empire, fly toward Point 1 and enter the Scenic Pattern at 7000’ MSL. Flights from the north and east may enter the Scenic Pattern at Point 2 or Point 3. Remain outside of the polygon shaped city perimeter fence and circle clockwise. Exit the Scenic pattern between Point 3 & Point 4 and enter the traffic pattern via the Scenic Transition.

 

Traffic Pattern

23L is designated for landings. 23R is designated for takeoffs. Enter the Traffic Pattern from a direct downwind coming from Empire or from the valley southeast of Frog Pond. Descend to the TPA by or abeam Frog Pond. Please be alert for converging traffic over Frog Pond.

  • Aircraft less than 120 knots shall fly left of the railroad tracks at 5000’ MSL.
  • Aircraft greater than 120 knots shall fly over or to the right of the railroad tracks at 5500’ MSL and extend the downwind until abeam Razorback Mountain. Descent from TPA should take place at the user defined waypoint Dalek (40°45’06.0″N 119°09’36.0″W).

Straight in landings on 23L are prohibited. If visual contact with the runway is lost on the base leg, turn to runway heading prior to flying over the perimeter fence and go-around if the runway is not reacquired.

 

Takeoff Procedure

Fly runway heading up to 5000’ MSL until two (2) miles prior to any turns or additional climbs.

 

Departure to the South

Fly direct to Gerlach at or below 7000’ MSL, then on course.

 

Departures to All Other Directions

Follow the Scenic Pattern Entry procedure and then on course as long as the aircraft remains outside of the perimeter fence.

 

5L & 5R In Use

 

Approach From the South

Pilots who are familiar with the geography and the pattern may fly direct to Gerlach and perform a straight in approach to 5L (approximately a ten mile final). If the pilot is unfamiliar or uncomfortable with this approach, they should fly over the eastern mountain ridge (highest peak 7115’ MSL) around Empire, and enter the right traffic pattern at Frog Pond or fly the “Scenic to Land.”

 

Approach from All Other Directions

Approach the city at 7000’ MSL, remain outside of the fenceline, circle clockwise until east of the city, then fly the Scenic Transition.

 

Scenic to Land

From over Gerlach, fly toward Point 1 and enter the Scenic Pattern at 7000’ MSL. Flights from the north and east may enter the Scenic Pattern at Point 2 or Point 3. Remain outside of the polygon shaped city perimeter fence and circle clockwise. Exit the Scenic pattern between Point 3 & Point 4 and enter the traffic pattern via the Scenic Transition.

 

Traffic Pattern

5L is designated for landings. 5R is designated for takeoffs. Enter the traffic pattern either on a ten mile final over Gerlach or at Frog Pond. Aircraft on downwind shall coordinate, on the CTAF, with aircraft on final to determine when to make a right base.

  • Aircraft less than 120 knots shall fly right of the railroad tracks at 5000’ MSL.
  • Aircraft greater than 120 knots shall fly over or to the left of the railroad tracks at 5500’ MSL.

 

Takeoff Procedure

Fly runway heading up to 5000’ MSL for two (2) miles then on course.

 

Departures to the South

Enter the right crosswind after three (3) miles for a downwind departure. Be at TPA or higher prior to Frog Pond. When able, exit the traffic pattern towards Empire then on course.

 

Departures to the North or East

Left turn to the north or straight out departure off of runway 5R is permitted after three (3) miles.

 

Go-Arounds

 

All go-arounds must follow the same procedures as any departing aircraft. It is the responsibility of the pilot performing the go-around to communicate intentions and maintain visual separation with any aircraft departing the other runway. The faster of the two aircraft shall perform standard overtaking rules stated in 14 CFR 91.113.

 

If a go-around is necessary due to losing visual of the runway, as may occur due to playa conditions, aviate, navigate, and communicate! Maintain your heading and climb to the 5000’ MSL until visibility is regained, then return to the traffic pattern. Aircraft that enter IMC conditions in the downwind are expected to maintain their last heading until visibility returns. If there is a concern for terrain avoidance, pilots may climb at their discretion as long as the intention is announce on the CTAF.

 

Landing

Soft field landing techniques are required on touchdown with close attention to airspeed and altitude (depth perception is degraded due to the environment).  Minimal braking should be used and no reverse thrust or beta.

 

The touchdown zone (the first 1000’ of runway) will become softer and more sand-like later in the week as landing frequency increases. Good technique for 88NV is to land long and avoid this area.

 

After touchdown and slowed to a safe taxi speed, turn off in between the black runway edge identifier cones. There is no designated taxiway turnoff so exiting the runway should be done as soon as practical to accommodate landing traffic.

 

Taxiing & Parking

There will be a row of orange cones designating a taxiway on both sides of the cones. Pilots must taxi on the right side of the cones to facilitate two way taxiing.

 

Announce Taxi Intentions

Upon clearing the runway, switch to the Ground frequency and announce taxi and parking intentions. First time arrivals shall request parking instructions on Ground.

 

BxA

BxA aircraft shall contact the BxA Ramp frequency for parking instructions (see below). BxA aircraft landing on 23L are not required to announce taxi intentions on Ground and may contact BxA Ramp immediately after exiting the runway. General aviation aircraft should not taxi into the BxA ramp area as this creates unnecessary dust.

 

Back Pressure

Good technique is to maintain back pressure on the yoke to prevent nose wheels from getting stuck in dunes of soft dust referred to as “playa serpents.”

 

Airport Diagram

Pilots must use the airport diagram to facilitate situational awareness.

 

Parking – General Aviation

 

Ground Frequency

All general aviation aircraft shall contact “Black Rock Ground” and advise the following regardless of first time arrival or a returning flight.

  • Tail Number
  • Position and Taxi Intentions
  • “Need a Parking Spot” or “Have a Parking Spot”
  • Your Parking Preference (First time arrivals)

Parking preferences are commonly any of the following:

  • Frequent Flights / Ride Gifting
  • Camping Next to the Plane
  • No Flying During the Event
  • Transient Parking

The Ground radio operator will require the above information to assign a parking spot. Providing short and complete transmissions help reduce frequency congestion.

 

A/C: Black Rock Ground, N12345, clear of 23L, taxi  for parking, need a parking spot, camping next to plane.

A/C: N12345, clear of 5L, returning scenic, taxi to transient parking.

 

Follow Me

After Ground assigns a parking spot, a Follow Me volunteer on bicycle will meet the aircraft upon nearing the general aviation ramp and marshall the aircraft to the assigned spot.

 

On the GA Ramp, expect to shut down in the taxiway row (do not pull directly into the parking spot). The Follow Me will assist in pushing the aircraft into the parking spot and advise any safety tips for tying down and setting up a tent if you wish to do so.

 

Transient Parking Ramp

If you are gifting rides, dropping-off, or picking-up passengers, park in the GA transient parking area. Depending on availability, an airport volunteer may assist with marshalling aircraft in the transient area. If it is clear no marshaler is present, the transient parking is considered at the pilot’s discretion facing into the wind. Do not park on a taxiway or near the terminal entrance.

 

Interceptors

After shutting down, an Interceptor volunteer will meet the plane to record your tail number, parking spot, and other information. They will verify that all aircraft occupants have a ticket or will call confirmation, and direct passengers to check in at the gate with Customs. Plan on checking into the gate prior to unloading all your cargo.

 

Do not leave the plane until met by an Interceptor. If no interceptor has arrived within fifteen minutes after shut down, proceed to the staff building located near the advisory tower and inform any staff member there that you are waiting for the Interceptor.

 

Luggage Carts

Luggage carts are available at the gate, outside the fence, for bringing cargo from the aircraft. Please unload your cargo at the gate for other to use. All luggage carts must be returned to the gate (please don’t take them to your camp). so others can use the carts. If you have trouble finding a luggage cart, ask a volunteer to assist you.

 

 

Parking – Burner Express Air

 

BxA Ramp Frequency

All charter aircraft shall contact BxA Operations for parking instructions in lieu of the Ground frequency. There will be dedicated ramp crew waiting to marshall aircraft into their assigned parking spots.

 

Passengers

All engines must be shut down when loading and unloading passengers. A ramp crew will meet passengers, escort them to the gate and remain with them until they successfully enter the event.

 

 

Taxi Out

 

GA Aircraft

Aircraft must be moved out of the parking spot and aligned with the ramp taxiway row before starting the engine to prevent dusting aircraft or people. Locate the Follow Me or other airport volunteer if assistance is needed.

 

Before starting or prior to taxi, contact “Black Rock Ground” with your tail number, pilot code and departure intentions as follows.

  • Scenic Pattern
  • Depart and Return
  • Final Departure

 

Final Departures

All aircraft will be responsible for their parking spot under Burning Man’s leave no trace policy. All garbage, tie downs, and moop must be removed and taken away in the plane. Advising Ground that you are a Final Departure allows airport staff to reassign your parking space.

 

BxA Aircraft

All aircraft must receive a signal from the BxA ramp crew that the aircraft is clear of all pedestrians and cleared to start. The aircraft shall contact the BxA Ramp frequency  to advise it is ready to start engines. All BxA aircraft must self announce taxi intentions on the Ground frequency.

Customs

Gate Processing

 

Ticketing Window (Box Office)

At this window, all participants will present their ticket or access their Will Call ticket. All participants must present a photo ID with their ticket. All participants entering the event shall pay a $60 airport usage fee (cash or credit). This fee is waived for airport volunteers who provide a printed copy of the Shiftboard shift to the volunteer staff at the window.

 

Customs Office

At the Customs Office, all pilots and their passengers who are camping at their plane will receive a Resident Wristband which will allow access to return to the GA ramp through the In/Out Gate. All event participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and receive information at the Customs Office about the event. First time Burners will be initiated by Greeters and you will be welcomed home!

 

Escorting Responsibilities

 

All passengers must be escorted by the pilot, or BxA representative, while outside the city fence until they pass through Customs and into the event. This is both for safety and accountability reasons.

 

When a passenger is waiting to have ticket issues resolved, the pilot, or BxA representative, is responsible for remaining with the passenger. If permission to enter the event is denied for any participant, the pilot or BxA representative is responsible for flying the passenger out of the airport.

 

Pilot Briefing

On-playa pilot briefings are mandatory for any pilot to take off from 88NV.

 

Schedule

Briefings are an hour long and are schedule at 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM while the airport is in operation. Location of the briefings will be determined by the briefer and posted at the In/Out Gate. Those needing immediate departure that do not plan on returning, find the Air Standards Safety Supervisor (ASSS) on the GA ramp for an abbreviated briefing.

 

Content

Pilot briefings will focus on the the airport rules and procedures, hazards and risks, and a Q&A. AOPA Wings credit will be available to pilots who attend a briefing.

 

Verification

Upon completion of the briefing, pilots will verify attendance with a sign-in sheet and receive a pilot wristband that will allow access through the In/Out Gate with passengers. The sign in sheet will be provided to the tower to verify departing aircraft have successfully completed the briefing.

 

Scenic Flights

One of the greatest gifts a person can receive is a flight around the city. For many people, flying in a small airplane is a unique experience, one that is often even more memorable and inspiring when it occurs at Burning Man. A big thank you in advance to any pilot who takes the time to gift someone a ride around the city!

 

 

Scenic Pattern Altitude (SPA)

 

  • 5,500’ MSL for aircraft less than 120 knots.
  • 6,000’ MSL for aircraft greater than 120 knots.
  • 7,000’ MSL for aircraft arriving from anywhere other than 88NV.

 

 

Scenic Reporting Points

 

Each point of the Black Rock City polygon boundaries are numbered. Position reports by pilots in the scenic pattern should be made at the following points.

 

 

  • Entering the Scenic Pattern (Usually Point 1)
  • Exiting the Scenic Pattern (Usually Between Point 3 and 4)
  • Point 5 (Additional Circuits or Departing the Scenic to the South)

 

 

For aircraft that exit the the Scenic Pattern between Point 3 and 4 for the Scenic Transition, it is mandatory to report the Frog Pond Entry (45⁰ Entry) prior to entering the traffic pattern.

 

 

Before Takeoff

 

Ride Wrangler

The airport helps facilitate event participants getting a gifted flights by directing them to the Ride Wrangler volunteer positioned near the pilot gate. They will maintain a list of passengers and work with pilots to accommodate seat and weight capacity. Off duty airport volunteers are given priority on the list. Pilots wishing to gift flights shall advise the Ride Wrangler of your availability and they will connect you with passengers.

 

Scenic Sentry

To assist with monitoring passenger movement through the In/Out Gate, it will be required to check-in with the Scenic Sentry volunteer while you are with your passengers. Temporary Wristbands will be assigned to your passenger which will allow their re-entry to the event. Pilots are required to check in with the Scenic Sentry after the flight to have the Temporary Wristbands removed.

 

Taxi

Upon contacting the Ground with your pilot code, tail number, and advising that you are a “scenic flight,” the Ground radio operator may require you to delay your departure for a few minutes if there is a significant number of aircraft in either or both patterns.

 

 

Scenic Pattern

 

Departing Runway 23R

Departing runway 23, fly runway heading and climb to approximately 4800’-5000’ MSL then a shallow right turn towards Point 1. Continue the climb to SPA.

 

Departing Runway 5R

Fly the upwind for two (2) miles and enter a right downwind while climbing to SPA. Once at SPA, turn direct for Point 5 and fly directly over the runways.

 

Flight Path

All aircraft shall have a clockwise pattern around the outside of the city perimeter fence. Always stay outside of the city perimeter fence. No overflight of the city is permitted. If doing additional loops around the Scenic Pattern, remain close to the perimeter fence at Point 4 and Point 5 and be alert for downwind traffic as well as traffic entering the scenic pattern.

 

23L/R In Use 5L/R In Use

 

Overtaking

Overtaking another aircraft at the same altitude should be avoided. Provided that two-way communication is established between the two aircraft, they are able to maintain visual separation, and no ground track goes over the city perimeter fence, overtaking is permissible at the pilot’s discretion.

 

 

Scenic Transition

 

The Scenic Transition refers to aircraft departing the Scenic Pattern and entering the Traffic Pattern. Aircraft shall exit the Scenic Pattern between Point 3 and Point 4, fly southeast around the east side of Razorback Mountain. Start descending from SPA to the TPA once east of Razorback. Once at TPA and in the Frog Pond Valley (SW side of Razorback), enter the traffic pattern at Frog Pond.

 

 

Scenic & Go (Arrive & Depart from Elsewhere)

 

Aircraft that wish to perform a scenic flight around the city and depart the area must do so in accordance with the rules of this advisory including registering, completing the online training and complying with all communication and routing procedures. Aircraft not planning to land at 88NV shall maintain no lower than 7,000’ MSL, remain outside of the polygon shaped city perimeter fence, and circle clockwise.

 

23L/R In Use

From over Empire, fly toward Point 1 and enter the Scenic Pattern at 7000’ MSL. Flights from the north and east may enter and exit the Scenic Pattern at Point 2 or Point 3. Southern departures should exit at Point 1 to the west for one (1) mile prior to turning south toward Gerlach.

 

5L/R In Use

From over Gerlach, fly toward Point 1 and enter the Scenic Pattern at 7000’ MSL. Flights from the north and east may enter and exit the Scenic Pattern at Point 2 or Point 3. Southern departures should exit at Point 5 toward Empire.

23L/R In Use 5L/R In Use

Ultralight

Other Operations

 

Ultralights are permitted and are subject to the same rules of this advisory unless stated in this section.

 

Modified Hours of Operations & Runway

All ultralights must originate from 88NV and are permitted to takeoff and land from sunrise to sunset. All takeoffs and landings must be done from the ultralight designated area.

 

Modified Scenic Pattern

Ultralights less than 70 mph are restricted to a modified Scenic Pattern. Fly below 5000’ MSL starting northwest of Point 5, clockwise to Point 3, and back.

 

Do not fly directly over the ranger station near Point 1 regardless of altitude. As a reminder, all aircraft including ultralights must stay outside the city fence.

 

Modified Communication Procedures

Ultralights are not required to have two-way communication but it is recommended that they do and announce all takeoffs and landings on CTAF. No call to Ramp Dog is required. Ultralights may utilize 122.75 as an Ultralight CTAF when in the Scenic Pattern.

 

Helicopters

Helicopter approaches are the same as all other aircraft but are required to sidestep over the runway, to land on one of the two helipads. The helipad to the northwest of Point 5 is for general aviation and the one east of Point 5 is for BxA helicopters Due to the surface conditions (a fine, dusty, alkali dry lake bed), hovering should be done at a minimum. Air taxiing should be done at no less than 50’ AGL and should not fly directly over any aircraft or people.

 

Skydiving

Skydiving is permitted at Black Rock City. All jumps must be done from aircraft originating out of 88NV. Anyone wishing to skydive at Burning Man must register with the Burning Sky theme camp. Click here to learn more.

 

Drones

All drone flying within the BLM closure order must take place within the city fence and requires prior approval. Click here to learn more.

 

Links & Downloads

 

Downloads

    • Pilot Advisory (pdf Format)
    • Airport Diagram
    • Ramp Diagram (General Aviation)
    • Arrival & Departure Chart – 23L/R
    • Traffic Pattern – 23L/R
    • Scenic Pattern – 23L/R
    • Arrival & Departure Chart – 5L/5R
    • Traffic Pattern – 5L/5R
    • Scenic Pattern – 5L/5R
    • DOWNLOAD ALL