The primary time I went to Coachella was in 2013. I’ll always remember seeing a few of my favourite bands just like the Postal Service and Phoenix. Or the adrenaline rush of operating between Native Natives and Tegan & Sara and the stress of deciding if I ought to depart Wu-Tang Clan for Pink Scorching Chili Peppers. I’ll always remember my first golden hour, watching the solar set behind the mountains, the lights on the palm timber activate and the enormous roaming snail illuminate the grounds. Euphoric.
I’ll additionally always remember how this unbelievable weekend was nearly being ruined as a result of my greatest pal and I had been woefully unprepared for tenting within the desert. In all the pleasure main as much as the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Competition in Indio, Calif., I uncared for to analysis what we must always pack. We had our tent and pillows, however no sleeping luggage. We had our bathe caddy, however no towels. We didn’t carry an EZ-Up (that one was deadly).
Fortunately, I recovered and have camped on the competition yearly since (and have turn into a moderator of the Coachella subreddit). Alongside the way in which, I’ve picked up ideas and tips from the very best. With presale beginning Friday at 11 a.m. PT., right here’s an unofficial information to surviving tenting at Coachella.
What are my tenting choices?
Camp in your automobile ($149 + charges). Automobile tenting spots are 10 by 30 toes and you may have as many individuals tenting in your spot as you’ll be able to comfortably match. You want just one automobile camp cross per automobile and spots are good for the whole weekend. As soon as parked, your automobile stays in your spot for the whole weekend — there’s no driving out and in. You’ll be able to’t enter the spot with no automobile so you must both arrive along with your entire group or await folks to indicate up within the ready space previous safety.
You could have a standard passenger automobile, truck or van. (No bikes, RVs, trailers, motor houses, buses or U-Haul vans allowed — see the complete listing of accepted and banned automobiles on the Coachella web site).
Sure, camper vans are allowed! These are a handy means for folks coming from out of city to camp with out flying with a ton of substances. They arrive with a mattress, linens and small kitchenette with a range and mini-fridge. Make sure that the corporate removes any butane (the competition permits solely propane) and actual silverware (that has been confiscated by competition safety earlier than).
Camp in a tent ($149 + charges). Tent-only tenting spots are a 10-by-15-feet grass space and you may have as many individuals as you’ll be able to comfortably match. Every tent tenting spot comes with one in a single day parking spot to go away your automobile throughout the road.
Camp in a spot closest to the competition, a.okay.a. “most well-liked tenting” ($375 + charges). The primary 15 to twenty rows of the coveted Lot 8 are reserved for most well-liked tenting, placing you closest to the doorway of the competition. This selection offers you the liberty to reach everytime you’d like in the course of the day and be assured a spot towards the entrance of competition, which might save your toes by the top of the weekend.
There are different glamping choices (Lake Eldorado, Safari), however these are a lot pricier and infrequently embrace competition tickets. They don’t comply with the identical standards because the GA tenting areas, so I’ve restricted this text to these.
However what’s the distinction between automobile and tent tenting?
The one precise distinction we’ve discovered is that automobile tenting offers you entry to your automobile simply, whereas tent tenting doesn’t. You do camp individually, however everyone seems to be in the identical fundamental lot. Tent campers have entry to every little thing automobile campers do, and you may nonetheless hand around in the automobile tenting heaps.
How many individuals can comfortably slot in a automobile camp space?
Two folks with a mid-size automobile and a tent are my private most. I’ve tried it with three folks and it was … cramped.
Do I want a tenting cross to entry the campgrounds?
Nope. A competition wristband is the one factor required to be within the campgrounds.
Is a tent required?
No. You’ll be able to sleep in your automobile, outdoors beneath a cover, a hammock, or on the bottom behind your automobile. What you do in/along with your house is totally as much as you.
What’s the safety course of like?
First, make certain everybody in your automobile has a wristband, and your tenting cross is on show in your windshield. If you arrive on website, you’ll be directed into one among about 20 strains. If you get to the entrance, safety guards will ask you to step out of your automobile. They’ll verify your entire stuff. The strains are not often constant — your line might have safety opening suitcases, tent luggage and coolers or they’ll open your glove field and usher you onward.
Professional tip: I like to supply the safety guards water, soda or snack. They’re usually overworked, understaffed and underpaid. Kindness goes a great distance, particularly given how laborious they might make the start of your day.
What tenting facilities can be found?
The Basic Retailer: A big retailer in the midst of the grounds, promoting on a regular basis objects you might have forgotten — toiletries, tenting gear and bedding, snacks, ice and even a microwave.
A silent disco: The place the celebration folks go on the finish of the night time.
Actions Tent: The place the early birds flock to for daytime actions like dodgeball and yoga.
Charging stations and an web café: For these busy bees.
Requirements: Meals distributors, Port-o-potties, bathe trailers.
A shuttle: It takes you to Ralph’s, the closest grocery retailer.
What ought to I carry?
- A straight-legged EZ-Up. This isn’t a suggestion. This can be a necessity. You’ll completely remorse it for the remainder of your life in the event you don’t get an EZ-Up. I additionally use a cover wall (only one) for a bit privateness and to maintain the solar out.
- Plastic stakes (and a mallet) to stake down your EZ-Up. Metallic stakes will 100% be confiscated by safety.
- Frozen water bottles. Use them in your cooler in lieu of ice packs. They’ll hold your meals and drinks chilly, and once they soften, you’ll have chilly water. (Some folks swear by dry ice. I’ve by no means been capable of determine it out.) Additionally they promote luggage of ice across the campgrounds, both on the basic retailer, or by way of pickup vans driving across the website.
- A meals cooler and a beverage cooler. You’ll possible be opening the beverage one way over the meals one, so this could assist make your ice last more in at the very least one among them.
- Something that makes your camp really feel like residence. Deliver rugs, tapestries and inflatable furnishings. I take advantage of a ton of each photo voltaic and battery-powered string lights. Fancy lights make your camp fairly whereas additionally serving to you discover your campsite at the hours of darkness.
- Much more lights. Headlamps. Lanterns. Flashlights.
- A multi-tool. I additionally like zip ties, skinny rope and duct tape to safe issues and to have available in case of emergencies. Our camp bathe broke in a wind storm final yr and we duct taped it to all hell and it survived the weekend.
- A tenting bathe. However in the event you don’t carry one, attempt to bathe as early as humanly doable. Wherever round 7 a.m. is good. As soon as it hits 9 a.m., you’ll be ready some time out within the warmth.
- Ear plugs and a watch masks. These are essential. I simply added the attention masks final yr and holy shirtballs, that was a sport changer for sleeping in past the dreaded time when your tent turns into a sauna.
- A tank stuffed with fuel in the event you’re automobile tenting. Fill your automobile up simply earlier than getting in line to enter. You don’t know the way lengthy you’ll be in line for safety. So as to add: I’ll usually sit in my automobile within the morning and do my make-up within the air con (or simply to chill off, let’s be actual.) Don’t hold your keys within the ignition just for too lengthy. It’s very unhappy while you’re able to go residence Monday morning and your automobile gained’t begin. And produce jumper cables! Although in the event you overlook, AAA is on-site.
What’s top-of-the-line elements of tenting at Coachella?
Day Zero, or the Thursday earlier than the competition. It’s a complete temper. The grounds are electrical and power is at an all-time excessive as everybody mills round. I really like attending to the campgrounds as early as doable to soak up all of it. Some key issues to do that day are:
- A classic merch sale occurs round sundown close to the Silent Disco, the place merch from earlier years is bought at an enormous low cost.
- Sundown on the hill in Lot 4. Tons of of campers collect on this beloved landmark to observe our first sundown over the desert.