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# <a name="Information on the Black Rock De"></a> Information on the Black Rock Desert (BRD)

<div>
  <center>[[BlackRockLogistics/IMG_1881.JPG]]<br><font size="-1"> <em>Moonset at sunrise in the Black Rock Desert</em> </font></center>
</div>

### <a name="Transportation Notes:"></a> Transportation Notes:

- **Distance:** The Black Rock Desert is about almost exactly 500 miles and thus a 12 hour drive from Portland. It's a nice drive through central and southeastern Oregon, but it's a long one. Make sure your car can handle the long trip, the high heat and the amazing amount of fine, gray dust. Note that you'll be driving off of the highway and directly onto the dry lake bed, called the "playa": we've had a Porsche 911 make it over the playa but you do want to be careful about low riding cars ([more driving info](http://www.rimworld.com/balls/precautions.html)). We'll eventually post maps and detailed directions from Portland here (here are the [directions we used in 1999?](http://psas.pdx.edu/psas/Schedule/Maps/B.R.%20directions/BRdirections.html)), but here's [some directions](http://www.rimworld.com/balls/road.html) for right around the playa.
- **Altitude:** The Black Rock Desert is almost exactly 4000 ft. above sea level. On the way there, there are four mountain passes to navigate:
  - Willamette Pass summit crossing the Cascade Range, on Hwy 58 between Oakridge and Crescent.
  - A gentle pass between Klamath Falls and Alturas
  - A 6100' pass crossing the Warner Range between Alturas and Cedarville. These are impressive mountains.
  - A pass between the California/Nevada border and Gerlach crossing the Hays Canyon Range.
- **Ag Inspection:** There are agricultural inspections upon entry to California, between Klamath Falls and Alturas, and between Alturas and Cedarville.
- **GPS coordinates:**
  - **Turnoff:** the turnoff from the road onto the Playa (note, this is the second such entry area, and is the second driveway on the second entry area):
    - N 40° 46.571'
    - W 119° 15.823'
  - **2002 camp:** our encampment on the flight line:
    - N 40° 48.674'
    - W 119° 07.302'
  - **2004 Launch site coordinates:**

<div>
  <center>[[N 40&deg; 48.741&#39; W 119&deg; 07.335&#39;|BlackRockLogistics/GPS.jpg]]<br>
  </center>
</div>

- **The Reno Alternative:** The BRD is only 2.5 hours north of Reno, NV by car. For some people unable to make the 12 hour drive, consider flying into Reno, renting a car, and driving up to the BRD. We may also be able to arrange a pickup from the Reno airport if there are enough people coming in at the right times. According to some of our members, though: including the driving to the airport, getting through security, flying to Reno, driving up to the BRD, etc... could take you up to 8 hours! So be careful you get good flights, else you might as well have driven ;)

### <a name="Environment Notes:"></a> Environment Notes:

- **Temperature:** The BRD is a beautiful but nasty place. It's going to be very, very hot and sunny during the day and very chilly at night. See the ["BALLS 2002"](http://www.ahpra.org/b2k.html) site for more information, but you'll need everything from tents to your own water. AHPRA will be providing `portapotties,` but little else.
- **Dust Storms:** [Whiteouts](http://images.burningman.com/index.cgi?image=10681) frequently occur where visibility drops to 10 feet as winds blow the alkaline, gritty dust around. We did not have them in 2002 but they happened daily during Burning Man in August 2003. This is a respiratory hazard. Bring a good-fitting dust mask and goggles for eye protection, or at least a bandana. Plan on a day cleaning your equipment when you get home. Bring plastic baggies for precious equipment.
- **Playa Foot:** The alkaline dust of the dry lake bed can cause many folks to experience painful blistering of the feet. Don't go barefoot or sandals only: plan on wearing socks and shoes. Wash and dry your feet at night, recoat with Dr. Bronner's soap and put socks on before sleeping, and you won't get it.
- **Motel Option:** The closest "place" to the BRD is the town of Gerlach, NV, which is right on the edge of the playa. There is no cell phone coverage, but there is a small motel called "Bruno's" (775-557-2220). If you don't want to camp, get your reservations ASAP since it'll fill up fairly fast.
- **Communications:** Cell phones didn't work there as of September 2002. We're not sure if they do now... but please don't count on it! We'll be using amateur band radios again this year (146.43MHz) for long distance communication, as well as FRS ("Family Radio Service") radios for short distance stuff. We'd love to get an internet connection, e.g. Starband, but that means someone has to bring their starband equipment and know how to set it up.
- **Port-o-potties:** are provided by the AHPRA... but that's it! There's nothing else there. So you'll either have to drive back to Gerhlach for a hotel, rent an RV from Reno, or set up camp at the launch (which is what most people do)

### <a name="Registration Fee:"></a> Registration Fee:

There will be a registration fee per person. It's usually $40 for pre-registration, and $60 onsite. We'll be registering as a group - which may get us a discount - so please try and register with us instead of individually.

### <a name="Things to think about bringing:"></a> Things to think about bringing:

- Put everything in plastic bags to keep out dust.
- Lawn chairs to look up at all the rockets spiraling out of control.
- Spray bottles
- Hats, bandanas, SUNSCREEN, sunscreen lip balm
- Lots and lots of water (gallon or more per day)
- Good healthy snacky foods - there's too much to do, no time to eat ;)
- Bring FRS, CBs and 2m (146.43MHz) radios
- Bicycles (but plan on wear from alkaline, gritty dust)
- GPS's in order to find the final launch site on the playa (dry lake bed)
- Shoes &amp; Socks
- [Dust mask](http://images.burningman.com/index.cgi?image=10681) or bandana, and goggles
- Flashlights, lanterns, floodlights, etc.
- Umbrella (portable shade)
- [More ideas](http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/the_desert.html)

### <a name="Rent an RV"></a> Rent an RV

Some folks had great luck flying into Reno and renting an RV. [[KeithPackard]] and [[BartMassey]] found a really good place: Reno Tahoe RV Rentals: 775 324 7368. They got a 2001 25' class C Winnebago for $135/day with a #350 damage deposit (returned by check). They may need a binder for insurance. (fax) 775 322 8110. Apparently they may also deliver/pickup the RV from the car rental area in the airport.

Some RV places are wise to the damage of the Black Rock Desert and if you are going there may give you a steeper rate and higher cleaning deposit.

### <a name="Second Opinions"></a> Second Opinions

Other Web-based resources to consider whilst planning your part of the Black Rock excursion:

<dl>
  <dt><a href="http://www.kluft.com/~ikluft/blackrock/" target="_top">Ian&#39;s Black Rock Pages</a></dt>
  <dd>Not our [[Main/IanOsgood]], just some other guy who appears to have spent his share of time in the Black Rock Desert. Lots of good info, especially for first-timers, including a nifty <a href="http://www.kluft.com/~ikluft/blackrock/br-checklist.html" target="_top">camping check-list</a>. </dd>
  <dt><a href="http://cleardarksky.com/c/BlackRockDNVkey.html?1" target="_top">Black Rock Desert Clear Sky Clock</a></dt>
  <dd>A really nifty page some dude put together that takes weather forecast data from a group of Canadian scientists (&quot;Canadians, Australians, what&#39;s the difference?&quot;) and creates a handy-dandy table predicting sky conditions for the next two days. Useful if you&#39;re the type that likes to look up a lot. Not really logistics-related, but interesting nonetheless. (There&#39;s also a forecast for <a href="http://cleardarksky.com/c/PortORkey.html?1" target="_top">Portland</a>.) </dd>
</dl>