Burning Man: Don’t Have Sex in Your Tent. ~ Troy Dayton

Via Troy Dayton
on Aug 19, 2013
get elephant's newsletter
Love Beds photo by Spider Rick http://www.flickr.com/photos/spider/
Love Beds photo by Spider Rick http://www.flickr.com/photos/spider/

See also: 5 Ways to Maximize Personal Growth at Burning Man (or Anywhere). 

Hopefully, the following will happen to you this burn: You will have a moment with someone(s) that sends chills down your spine.

You’ll look deep into each other’s eyes and have one of those devouring kisses that begs for further action. Then, in the heat of anticipation, you need to decide where you will become animals with each other.

Don’t be a boring lover and take them back to your tent—that’s sooo “default world.”

My motivation in telling you this is that I’m trying to help you fulfill a likely fantasy of having the most memorable and adventurous sex of your life.

Regardless of where you are on the playa, numerous people within a block or two of you have spent months planning and creating the most romantic and sexy places…just for you. Their hard work and dedication will be for naught if those spaces remain empty while you are getting sweaty on a blowup mattress that makes a decidedly unsexy sound when it rubs up against the sides of your tent.

Think about it—you could pop your tent up in your living room and be in the exact same setting.


If this is true (which it is), why is there not usually a line of people waiting to hook-up in these amazingly sexy nooks and crannies?

1. Inertia/convention

In default world, when it’s time to hook up you generally just go back to one of the partners’ homes. Unlike Burning Man, the average city does not have sex palaces just waiting for strangers to hook up in them. This is one of the greatest unique gifts of Burning Man but you need to know its an option. That’s why I’m telling you.

2. Presumed need for privacy.

Even if you don’t need privacy, people often assume their partner does and since most people are just terrible about having frank conversations about needs and fantasies this question often doesn’t come up.

Inside the famed Orgy Dome

And, even outside your tent, privacy is still an option. There are places on the playa that have fully decked out private hotel-like yurts and numerous little private nooks made perfectly for your carnal pleasures.

Not sure if they are there this year, but Ashram Galactica is one of these places (although you need reservations at this one).

There are also lots of semi-private spaces. These are places where people can tell that someone is hooking up in there if they look at the right angle…but its not like getting jiggy on a stage.

Then there are places that are much more open, which for some has a particularly intensifying appeal.

Dome Sweet Dome photo by Littlewoo
Dome Sweet Dome photo by Littlewoo









3.  Not sure if it’s okay with the creator of the space.

Maybe you see that perfect place to hook up but its hard to tell if it’s for general use or just for people in that camp or even just for the people that made it. Generally speaking, I say go for it. Unless the space is buried deep off the public part of the camp and there are not a lot of personal items like someone would keep in their main sleeping space, chances are its been built for you to connect in.

If there are people around it that look like they are part of the camp, ask them. Too many desirable places like this are left empty because people are too shy to ask or just hop in.

Also, there are some camps that look like they have great places to hook up in but are explicitly non-sexual and are for cuddling or sleeping. Please be courteous of their intent.

4.  Lack of pre-planning.

Often these places are tucked away and hard to find on purpose. I make it a point to know of at least 4-6 places all over the playa where there are awesome places to hook up so that when the moment arises, we don’t have to start looking then.

There are a number of ways to do this:

1. Make it a point in your daily travels, particularly in the few blocks surrounding your camp, to find a places that you like. Introduce yourself to the camp leaders and ask what the story is with the space. On more than one occasion, the person told me it is not a public space but that they’d give me special permission use it if it was free when I wanted it.

2. Look in the “What Where When” and the camp list. Usually, if a camp is sex-themed, there will be places made to do it there. But I highly recommend checking it out before bringing someone there in the heat of the moment because a lot of these places, while sex-themed, are decidedly unsexy or are just not open for people at that time.

3. Mark these places on your Burner Map, so you can always see where the nearest sexy place is, should a situation arise where it’s needed.

Especially if you are using someone else’s space, make sure you have Leave No Trace Sex. That means putting a towel or jacket down if possible and not leaving wrappers, etc.

If someone can tell after you are gone that someone had sex there, then you have failed to leave no trace.

Should you decide to break the rules and have sex in open playa at night, please make sure you are very visible to anybody in a vehicle otherwise you could be run over.

Even if pain is your thing, there is no “safe word” for a couple thousand pound vehicle blaring dubstep at 2 am.

I hope you have the juiciest hottest sex of your life in a setting that is as grand and beautiful as the person(s) you are sharing it with.

Leave your hot stories of unique places you’ve hooked up at on the playa in the comments section.


Like elephant journal gets sexy on Facebook.

 Ed: Bryonie Wise


About Troy Dayton

Troy Dayton (T. Dazzl) – Co-founder of Burner Map. Blogger at Burner Love. CEO at The ArcView Group and board member of the Marijuana Policy Project. Formerly Director of Development at MAPS and Co-founder of Students for Sensible Drug Policy. Troy served on the leadership team at the Interchange Counseling Institute and is a graduate of the program. This is his 13th consecutive burn.


10 Responses to “Burning Man: Don’t Have Sex in Your Tent. ~ Troy Dayton”

  1. RON JACOBS says:

    Fuck YEAH!

  2. A says:

    Sounds ah-mazing! I’ll definitely try to go next year!

  3. Alina says:

    Yes! Hope I can make it next year!

  4. Cate says:

    You should begin this story with a PSA to USA A CONDOM! I believe you mention "wrappers" toward the bottom, and I am assuming you choose such a cute word for some personal reason, but adults are adults – use the C word and be upfront about the dangers of casual sex without condoms.

  5. Pocohontas says:

    Plus, I and 2 other camp mates can attest that you are more likely to get pregnant if you have sex in your tent 🙂

  6. Gigi-D L'Amour says:

    Extremely dangerous and bad advice. Public sex is illegal even a Burningman, all the normal laws are enforced and yes you can be arrested for public sex acts, and many people are every year. The LEO's take this very seriously because there are children at the even and any public act could be seen by a minor. The only good advice in this article was about going to the Orgy dome which is very reputable and they have taken great pains to make sure the space can not be seen from the outside.
    You do not want to have the souvenir you bring home from Burningman be sex offender conviction.

  7. Justin C says:

    I believe he actually meant wrappers, as in the wrappers that contain the condom… from my experience, condoms are somewhat of an expectation at Burning Man in the tents as they help contain fluids in a semi-public place… But really it all depends on which tent we're taking about.

  8. elephantjournal says:

    He says wrapper, etc. Sounds to me like condoms and their packaging for sure.

  9. pia says:

    So let me get this straight: even at Burningman somebody wants to tell us what we should want to do there, where and how?

  10. Zachariah says:

    Sex in public is still illegal, even at burning man. That should be noted, lest someone come home with a sex offense on their record.

    Condoms should be mentioned here more prominently than ‘wrappers’, lest someone come home with something else to go along with their sex offense.

    I just can’t even with the shared sex spaces with people I don’t know, or know where their body parts and fluids have been. Am I to trust they kept it all clean and are free of disease?

    Overall, I’m the opposite of impressed with this article, definitely dissappointed, and even slightly disgusted…. this coming from someone who is far from prude… just not… stupid.