RV versus Tent --- Any suggestions????

Ideas, advice, tips, and tricks regarding shelter, shade, tents, and camping. Yes, this includes RV's too.
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nefarious
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RV versus Tent --- Any suggestions????

Post by nefarious » Wed Jan 05, 2005 9:24 am

Does anyone have any advice as to whether an RV is worth the cost, cuts the fun or is a good idea? Or is a tent just as good or Better?

Thank you!
Nefarious

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Ranger Genius
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Post by Ranger Genius » Wed Jan 05, 2005 9:31 am

Does anyone know whether you're more likely to get a serious response if you use large, colorful letters and clumsy sentence structureor if using normal text and reading through it before you hit submit works better or not?
Also, is one question mark really enough????
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Post by Ranger Genius » Wed Jan 05, 2005 9:34 am

Nefarious:

I've never camped in an RV, but I can tell you that I interact a lot less with neighbors who do. I think it feels a lot more like camping to a lot of them. There are those who enjoy it, but I don't think I would be one of them. If it's your first time, you should probably just take a tent. You'll feel much more as though you're a part of the experience that way. YMMV, however.
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stuart
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Post by stuart » Wed Jan 05, 2005 9:45 am

I have been a dedicated RVer. Although I may change my stripes this year.

Know that how you experience the event has to do with your attitude and not your means of conveyence. Also know that you will not want to use the shower or the toilet and will need to be draconian when it comes to keeping it shut up tight, keeping shoes out, etc..

a simple search on this board is likely to turn up massive debates full of useful and useless information regarding RVs at burning man.

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Post by MissNev » Wed Jan 05, 2005 11:09 am

Our camp has become rather large the past few years, and some of our campmates bring RVs. My dad, for one. He enjoys the convenience of having his own bathroom, shower and kitchen. I couldn't imagine Burning Man without my tent, but that's just me. Stuart is right; it's not your means of convenience that matters as much as your attitude. Your level of preparedness, regardless of whether you RV or tent, will make a huge difference.

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Post by safetythird » Wed Jan 05, 2005 11:34 am

If you already own an RV then that's the way to go. You'll have many conveniences that tents just don't have.

If you are thinking of renting an RV then I'd suggest you tent camp and decide how unbearable it is for you. I personally feel that it isn't worth $2k to rent one. Renting sucks for other reasons like tons of cleaning before return and very limited generator usage.

I own one, brought it last year and plan on bringing it again this year. Only you can decide which is better for you.

S3

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Post by dragonfly Jafe » Wed Jan 05, 2005 11:37 am

There has always been at least 1 RV in every camp I have been in at BM (though I have never brought one). I prefer to build a structure every year, it is part of the "BM experience" for me. Sort of a kind of Art. But others have different levels of skills, will endure more (or less), and have different needs. There is no "one correct answer" to your question. If you buy a tent, it could fail in the high winds (many do). If you build a structure, ditto (to a higher degree depending on your skills). If this happens, it really sucks. I have never seen an RV "fail" to provide shelter. (and in a severe dust storm, it is hard to beat an RV for comfort)

If you rent an RV, be very careful of how dirty it gets (there have been many past discussions on Eplaya that can be found with the search engine about this). Otherwise, you will not get your security deposit back AND give the Burningman event a bad reputation...Also be prepared for everyone and there cousin to want to use your RV to do (insert favorite illegal or private activity here).

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Re: RV versus Tent --- Any suggestions????

Post by Bob » Wed Jan 05, 2005 12:17 pm

nefarious wrote:Does anyone have any advice as to whether an RV is worth the cost, cuts the fun or is a good idea? Or is a tent just as good or Better?
Have you ever camped? If so, where and how?
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Post by 4caminos » Wed Jan 05, 2005 2:19 pm

I do a tent and van combo. The van is useful for crappy weather and for doing my illegal and private activities.

The tent is good for the food and gear.

4Caminos

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Ahemmmm....

Post by Rabbi Dali Rick » Wed Jan 05, 2005 6:35 pm

Did the tent Van thing as well. It has been great. I bought a huge tent last year for less than $60. I had an air bed that slept exceptionally well $49. This year I already have the tent and bed so my expenses are even less. We have two huge coolers one for everyday type stuff the other for longer term storage (read that as seldom opened). It all ends up being budget and personal choice. I have friends who came with an RV, and because it was so convient to hide away in the RV they missed half of the event, and mostly refused to put up with but the most mildest weather condidtions. Where's the fun in that?


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Post by YerNotDaBossOMe » Wed Jan 05, 2005 6:47 pm

I've owned four RVs over the years. I bought the last one just to take to Burning Man last year. I seldom hung out in it, but it was great to have a comfy bed free of playa dust, not to mention a shower, toilet, kitchen, fridge, freezer and air conditioning.
There...I said it and I'm glad!

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Post by Bob A » Wed Jan 05, 2005 8:44 pm

I rebuilt an old trailer last year and brought that,. about 14 feet long. I slapped some solar panels and batteries on it and it supplied my whole camp power. I only went into it to sleep and store my gear. Did all our cooking outside, shade structure etc. I did use the sink to clean a real greasy dish once, that was it. There was no bathroom or shower so I built an outside shower. I thought it was great having a place to sleep at night, with my bad back made me a much happier camper.

This year I just bought an old motorized RV to bring. Loved the trailer but the lousy mileage with my van killed me. Figured If I’m driving from the east coast, getting that kind of millage, I wanted something people could move around in and have fun. So the party camper II is born. Once we get out there the bathroom shower and AC gets locked up the first 2 will cost you a fortune to pump out, out there and the last will separate you from everyone.

Some people will tell you if you bring one, you will spend all your time in it ruining your experience, but that really depends on the person.

Bob A

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Post by regynalonglank » Thu Jan 06, 2005 1:23 am

some people in my camp had one, and i never went in it. not that i wouldn't, just never happened. they seemed to be in it a lot, and i didn't see them much other than meals really...in some ways it was like they weren't there...

i did the tent/van thing too. in the tent at first, retreated to the van after a few days...if i do the tent again i will bring one that is not open mesh at the top, you might as well just fill it with dust as soon as you get there, cuz if you can't zip it up to keep the dust out there's really no point!
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Post by Mister Jellyfish Mister » Thu Jan 06, 2005 8:41 am

Nefarious: Welcome. I see by your post count that your very first post was to start a new topic. Though we welcome your inquiry, you garner even more respectful replies if you use the search function first and read what has already been written. For example:

http://eplaya.burningman.org/viewtopic. ... te+trailer

Cheers!
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Here is my observation

Post by MrMullen » Thu Jan 06, 2005 9:31 am

If you have an RV, then take it to Burningman! Having all the stuff that comes with a RV makes Burningman, that much more fun (IMHO).

However, you will be a bit disconnected with other people since you have your own private chill and hangout space. This is either good or bad. I am a person who like everything in moderation, so having somewhere to flee is great for me, other people have complained that they don't see enough of the RV people.

Having a tent is not as bad as it sounds as long as you get a good size one. I have a "four man" tent, that ain't no four man tent and I felt a bit cramped at Burningman this year. Next time, I am getting one of those big ass 7 man tents or making a dome so I have some "breathing" room and storage space.

As for renting an RV, I would not do it for a couple of reasons. First, you are unlikely to get a rental RV for Burningman since many of the RV Rental places will not rent to you once they find out where you are going. The added expense is too much, as far as I am concerned. I can spend that money in better ways at Burningman.
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Post by mars » Thu Jan 06, 2005 11:38 am

I did the RV thing, and I loved it. I'm a real camper at heart, and no weather conditions can get me down, but I have a bad back now and I don't think I would be able to enjoy burningman if I had to sleep on the ground or even an air mattress--I'd be in too much pain. That said, I spend as little time in it as possible. Basically all I do is sleep in it and change clothes in it. To make this possible, we set up a "living room" outside the vehicle with rugs, chairs, tables, etc, and a kitchen, too. With everything outside, there is little reason to go in. Position the RV so that it blocks morning sun and afternoon wind and you will almost always have a pleasurable environment right outside your door.
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Post by vic » Fri Jan 07, 2005 5:57 am

There is a good RV advice thread in last years board.

Disadvantages of an RV -
Expensive to buy or rent
Harder to drive than a car
Burns three to five times more gas than a car
RVs are ugly and hard to tart-up for Burning Man
Lots of clean up time required after the event

Advantages of RV -
Creature comforts (already mentioned on this thread)
Easy and fast to set up, just park it.
No problem with the wind
With care, you will have much less dust than in a tent
Makes a good wind break for your camp
Lots of room for art, costumes, whatever
Easy storage of drinking water and waste water

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Little Trailers

Post by Mister Jellyfish Mister » Fri Jan 07, 2005 6:49 am

Now that I have a bigger camp trailer, I miss the ease and simplicity of my little 10 foot $400 beater. It was so easy to just hitch and go, even to a mid-size car. Of course, My wife would not join me because there was no bathroom or shower, another reason she does not go to the burn with me. That's OK. Daddy needs to let his freak flag fly.

When you think about it, you could buy one in Reno and store it there for $40/month. Pack your car to the gills and then redestribute your load when you get here and hitch up.

Handy tip: do what I did and sell it in to the guy in the bar on your return trip so you don't have to clean it. Do it all over again the following year! :D
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.........Come out with you hands up.......

Post by Rabbi Dali Rick » Fri Jan 07, 2005 7:39 am

Same here MJM. My wife refuses to go until the event matures enough to be held as a convention at one of the hotels in Las Vegas. She looks at the pictures with all the hoopla and costumes and such and all she can say is, "Ugh everyone is so dirty. How can they stand being that filthy."

corporatly,
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Post by Blonde Iguana » Fri Jan 07, 2005 12:24 pm

Nefarious, my tents and shade structure were both completely pulverized by the wind last year and I ended up sleeping in my truck and not having a decent shade area or chill space that would stay up for more than 15 minutes at a time. Of course, that probably had more to do with my complete lack of camping, building or securing skills than with the wind-resistant qualities of the gear. As I sat in my little heap of dust, snapped tent poles and torn gazebos gazing longingly at the RVs parked around me like shiny inviting day spas, I swore would only come back to Burning Man if it was within the secure walls of an RV. But now that I've bought my tickets for 2005, I'm starting to think "naaaaah." The whole collapsing ripping dust-choked experience is part of what my first Burning Man so memorable and unique, and I can't wait to bring another poor doomed tent out with me this year....
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Post by Natasha » Fri Jan 14, 2005 9:05 pm

Nefarious, 2004 was my first burn. I talked my husband into going, as I have been looking but not going for several years. We took our tent (a 3-4 man size) and bought a carport like structure. I found colorful full size sheets at thrift shops that I sewed string at the top. This way I was able to hang them from the carport structure to make sides for shade or privacy. The sides could be raise when the wind was high. This and some old carpet work well for us. We have a pickup truck with a topper where we kept much of our supplies parked partially under the end of the car port. This worked very well. A friendly neighbor with an RV with extra water provided a much needed shower. The people I met were great. What fun!
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Post by geekster » Fri Jan 14, 2005 10:06 pm

I was with a "hybrid" camp last year. Most everyone slept in tents but there was an RV for showers/kitchen facillities and nobody slept in the RV. The bedroom in the RV was available for anyone to use during day to chill, screw, whatever. The A/C proved useful when we had a couple of heat casualties during setup on Sunday and Monday.

We had plastic down on the interior carpet and had strict rules about going in. No shoes were allowed in the RV and everyone had a vinegar footbath before going inside. The onyl drawback was the number of people using the shower resulted in a lot of grey water to deal with. The toilet was taped shut, we used the porta potties and they did a pretty good job so black water wasn't an issue.

I would do it again with an RV to have the shower / fridge / stove options and a place to eat where dust doesn't get in your food but other than that, I would try to stay out of it.
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RV'n this year!

Post by Sharky » Wed Jan 19, 2005 11:21 am

Last year we hauled a couple of tents out to BRC along with a pvc pipe parachute dome. We ended up spending nearly all of our waking time out and about or in the dome. The time we stayed in the tent was "memorable".....as in covered with playa dust after the nightly wind storms. This year we bought a cheap, used, 10 foot travel trailer (at a fraction of what it would cost to rent an RV) and are remodeling the inside to use as crash space for sleeping, but will still live in the dome for the rest of the time out there. In fact, the trailer has sort of turned into our own little art world! I'd recommend tenting it at least once, just for the experience at least! I don't know if I could do the super sized taj majal model RV's like I saw last year, but a little gypsy trailer is sounding great for next year!
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Re: RV versus Tent --- Any suggestions????

Post by HughMungus » Tue Jan 25, 2005 6:24 pm

I'll have to disagree with what someone else said and say that if it's your first time, take an RV. If it's your first time and you don't know what weather challenges are facing you, you might be too miserable to enjoy things (think: tired and worn out from not being able to sleep because you were wet/trying to keep your tent from flying away all night/unable to cook anything/unable to clean yourself sufficiently/unable to sleep during the day in the tent because it's too hot). Do the camp/tent/shade structure thing the next time you go (and you can always hang out with your neighbors at theirs), ESPECIALLY if you're not an experienced camper.

If you do take an RV, try to get some others to go in with you to help with the cost. I don't know if I've been over-paying or what but I paid $3,000 last year for an RV. Ugh. I'm thinking about buying a used one (especially since we have to travel all the way from Texas).

Also, if anybody gives you shit about taking an RV, tell them to fuck off. Last year we made coffee for everyone around us, gave them a place to hide from the dust storms and even provdided shade for the neighbors on the shady side of our RV.
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Post by HughMungus » Tue Jan 25, 2005 6:36 pm

Bob A wrote:Once we get out there the bathroom shower and AC gets locked up the first 2 will cost you a fortune to pump out, out there and the last will separate you from everyone.

Bob A
Whenever we took an RV, we used the shower (sparingly becuase there was only so much water) but were able to provide showers for those who really needed them (i.e., five days in).

We never ran the AC unless we were sleeping during the day. Seems that it was fine with the windows open and the breeze. The only downside there, of course, is lots of dust...
It's what you make it.

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Post by HughMungus » Tue Jan 25, 2005 6:41 pm

Oh, and, Bob A, why not just dump your gray/black wather loads in Reno?I think we paid $5 for that.
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Post by HughMungus » Tue Jan 25, 2005 7:49 pm

FYI...

Speaking of special pricing for Burning Man, I just found an old link:

http://www.sierrarv.com/burningman.htm

There's another company, Cruise America, that I've rented with, also and I think they charge about the same.
It's what you make it.

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Post by HughMungus » Tue Jan 25, 2005 7:51 pm

And one more thing...notice that you can't return the RV on Sunday or Monday (due to Labor Day Weekend) so you're stuck with it until Tuesday...not good. I wonder if the way to go might be the passenger van/tent combo (if you're flying in). I'd assume you could return that on Sunday if you wanted to...
It's what you make it.

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