Camp Soft Landing

Providing a comfortable setting for visionary discussion and tea service amongst the mayhem of Black Rock City

Hello, Camp Soft Landing Campers!

This is an exciting newsletter! We’ve developed a lot of awesome opportunities for all of you to participate. We’re also rolling out more affordable than ever dues options. Most exciting (to me), we are cultivating a fantastic interlocking interconnected interwoven dizzyingly simple leadership team that you can grow to be a part of, step back from, return to, and innovate upon. Collaboration is fertile, and we want each and every Camp Soft Landing member to be invested in the well-being of your campmates, the smooth functioning of the camp, and the various opportunities to step up and step back from meaningful ways to contribute to this enriching community.

 As we’ve been coordinating like a busy beehive to bring all this content together, we’ve reflected on what a special community Camp Soft Landing is. We provide very modest amenities to our campers on a radically small budget. We work to minimize our environmental footprint in thoughtful, balanced ways. Our camp dues and other contributions go toward our service-focused gifts to the playa. We are a group who gather each year to provide a thoughtful and innovative speaker series and a truly unique 24-hour teahouse in Black Rock City. We strive for cooperation and transparency, creativity and self-reliance.

Thank you all for being a part of this project. We are honored and inspired to share Camp Soft Landing with you in 2017, and for many years to come.

CSL Pods for 2017

These are some of the pods already confirmed for Camp Soft Landing in 2017:

  • Camp Now
  • Palenque Norte
  • Full Circle Teahouse
  • Dust Hazard
  • Members of Roko’s Basilica return (new pod name TBA)
  • Kitchen Love Pod

If you’d like to lead a pod, please contact us at We’ll get you set up with just the right amount of space and the resources you need for a smooth, enjoyable burn. Pod leaders are responsible for placement of their pod members within the space allotted to them by camp, and for mediation of conflicts within their pod.

Box Truck for Camper Gear

New this year, you’ll be able to buy space for your gear on a box truck leaving from Oakland for Black Rock City on the evening of Friday, August 25. Items will return to Oakland by Wednesday, September 4. Depending on interest, it will be $25-50 roundtrip for each item of 10’ of length + girth. That is, a 2’x2’x2’ cube, or something that is 4’x1’x2’, etc. Items must be dropped off at a TBA location in Oakland between Wednesday, August 23, and the morning of Friday, August 25, and similarly picked up between Wednesday, September 6, and the evening of Friday, September 8. We will offer an option for you to ship items to us, so long as you also provide a return shipping label. Anything not dropped off on time will miss its nonrefundable ride, and anything not picked up in time will be considered a ground score.

The intent behind this is that increasingly many Camp Soft Landing campers are carpooling or taking the Burner Express to the playa. This is awesome! But it means that it’s harder to bring in all the gear you need to Black Rock City, especially since Camp Soft Landing doesn’t provide (much) shade or a meal plan.

At this point, we’re merely providing a form on which you can express your interest. If enough folks express interest, we’ll set up a payment option on the dues page (linked later in this email).

That said, please do fill out the interest form if you’d like to utilize the box truck for camper gear.

 Participation Opportunities

NB: You’ll also find all this info during the checkout process for your dues.

Camp mayor for the day: NB: One day as camp mayor counts as three shifts toward your dues! Friday, Saturday, and Sunday count as four. In this role, you stick around camp most of the day. You'll be the primary person in charge of the electrical and propane systems (we'll teach you everything you need to know.) Along with the teahouse kitchen crew, you'll ensure that the community kitchen and shower stay clean and organized. You'll answer questions campers might have, receive any fuel or water deliveries scheduled for that day, and other tasks needed for the smooth operation of the camp. You'll also be, as suits your level of experience and comfort, available for helping pod leaders with mediation and dispute resolution. Detailed task descriptions can be found here. Camp mayors work with the camp coordinators Stephen, Starfox, and Tryp.

Palenque Norte: The Palenque Norte Speaker series will run Tuesday-Friday, featuring a variety of illustrious, weird, and insightful speakers from psychedelia, technology, social justice, community building, politics, and other fields. This year we’ll also be featuring music in the evening. Volunteers for Palenque Norte will help with recording and audio/visual tech, and with fluffing and emceeing for the speakers, DJs, and musicians. This is a wonderful opportunity to catch all the speakers on a day you're interested in! Brad and Frank lead this project.

Full Circle Teahouse: NB: The midnight to 6 am tea shift counts as two shifts toward your shift commitment! The Full Circle Teahouse offers 24-hour gongfu-inspired tea service Sunday, August 27, through Monday, September 4. Servers share tea and empathy during six-hour shifts. Runners wash cups and teapots, refill jars of herbs and tea, carry water, and tidy. Annie, Felix, Nikkia, and Starfox lead this project. Detailed info about the teahouse here.

Teahouse Kitchen: A new pod has formed this year, focused on making Camp Soft Landing's modest amenities as awesome as they can be for all our camp members. The greywater and camp shower attendants will help to ensure that all campers know how to wisely engage with these resources. The kitchen queen will remind people to be tidy and facilitate community interaction in the kitchen and dining areas. Detailed info about the kitchen here.

Load / build / strike / unload: Final preparations will commence in Oakland on Saturday, August 19, and continue through loading in Reno until we reach the playa on Monday, August 21. Build will take place in Black Rock City Monday, August 21 through Saturday, August 26. Strike will begin on Sunday, September 3, and will finish with a thorough MOOP sweep in the early afternoon on Tuesday, September 5. Unload will begin in Reno on Tuesday, September 5 and wrap up in Oakland on Thursday, September 7. Helping with the entire load, strike, or unload will get you a refund on your camp dues of up to $100, to be issued after the event. Unless you are leading a particular part of build, any amount of participation in build will only count as one shift; this is because build is a particularly awesome time to be on playa and we just don't have to incentivize it that much. Each single day of load, strike, and unload count as one shift toward your dues. Fifi and Starfox are coordinating load, build, strike, and unload.

Off-playa preparations: We need lots of help with gear preparation, infrastructure creation, and administrative management of Camp Soft Landing. Please use this form to tell us about how you'd like to help with these off-playa opportunities, or email us at We're creating a less centralized, more sustainable admin and leadership structure for Camp Soft Landing, The Full Circle Teahouse, and Palenque Norte. If you'd like to be involved regularly in any or all of these projects, please let us know in what capacity -- large, small, in between, or parts unknown -- and we'll find the right way to fit all the pieces together.


Starfox, Tryp, Fifi, Stephen, Brad, Frank, Annie, and the rest of the team are proud to be working toward realizing the dream of making Camp Soft Landing a sustainable place for comfort, rejuvenation, and exploration in Black Rock City for years to come. Thank you so much for being an irreplaceable part of this community. You are loved and valued.

Dues for 2017

The moment you’ve all been waiting for! Including the return of early bird dues discount, to encourage you to commit to paying your dues early :)

  • 1 camp participation shift and $380

  • 3 camp participation shifts and $180

  • 5 camp participation shifts and $80

+ $50 early bird discount (through July 15!!!)

+ Refund up to $100 for staying through strike

Pay your dues here!

Full refunds will be available upon request until August 10. No refunds will be issued after that date, except for extenuating circumstances.

So what do these dues pay for?

Camp Soft Landing has ongoing costs such as:

  • Storage and transportation of camp gear
  • Food for build and strike crew
  • Comp tickets for up to four outstanding contributors to camp each year (part of the ongoing effort to make CSL a sustainable project for years to come)
  • Decor, lighting, and equipment for the teahouse and Palenque Norte
  • Water and tea for the teahouse
  • Electricity and water for the teahouse, power for Palenque Norte, propane and electricity for the community kitchen
  • A charging station for camp electronics

Improvements to infrastructure. This year we’ll be improving:

  • Shade for campers in the teahouse pod
  • Community kitchen infrastructure and ambiance
  • Shower system
  • Palenque Norte A/V system upgrades
  • Electrical and hot water system
  • Teahouse structure and furniture

Things your dues DON’T pay for (at least this year!):

  • Camper greywater (the greywater evaporation system seems to function best when it primarily serves the teahouse)
  • Food during the week of the burn
  • Money in the pocket of anyone

A detailed camp budget will be sent out in the coming weeks.

Not to cause panic, but interest in joining CSL has been running higher than ever before (by a factor of 3x). Due to the area we requested from Placement, we will have to cap membership at 200, so please sign up and pay your dues as soon as possible to guarantee your space with us.

Thank you!

That’s all we’ve got for now. As always, please direct your questions to

Looking forward to an extraordinary summer getting all our resources and projects organized, and an unforgettable burn.

All our best,

Starfox, Tryp, and the entire lead team

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