Like the cities of old, Black Rock City is secured by a perimeter fence, and participants enter through a gate. You must have a ticket to enter Black Rock City. The Gate opens in early August for pre-event traffic (only people with early entry passes are allowed in prior to the first day of the event), then opens for all participants at 6pm on the Sunday prior to the Man Burn, and is open 24 hours a day throughout the event.
What To Expect At The Gate
Here’s a summary of the process:
- On your way to Burning Man, please drive safely and be considerate while passing through local towns. Speeding, parking on highway shoulders, and unsafe driving are safety hazards and could threaten the future of the event. We are guests in their community, so be extra courteous and obey the law.
- The Gate opens at 6pm on the Sunday prior to the Man Burn. Plan your arrival so that you show up at the Gate after opening. We cannot allow people who show up early to wait in town (see #1 above).
- During peak traffic periods we will be controlling traffic with highway flaggers along Hwy 447 before the Gerlach gas station. Past experience has shown that long lines at the gas station have caused unsafe conditions. Watch for signs and flaggers on the road; they are fellow Burning Man volunteers helping to make your arrival safer! Please fill up in Fernley/Wadsworth (or other areas) and help reduce the traffic backup in Gerlach.
- As you approach the Burning Man entrance from the highway, tune your radio to 95.1 FM for Gate Information Radio! We will be broadcasting up to date info about the entry process. Not sure why there is a backup or how to get to will call? Tune in!
- Drive no more than 5-10mph on Gate Road! We have volunteers working out there and the dust can make it hard for you to see them. Speeding also causes ruts in the road, and that’s a bummer for your suspension.
- We place signs along your approach to the Gate. They have helpful information, please read them.
- Stay in your vehicle. We cannot emphasize that enough. Don’t wander along the road looking for will call or exploring the desert. If you need to go to will call, your entire vehicle should go with you. Don’t risk losing your friends.
- About 1/4 mile before you reach the Gate you will come to a set of small kiosks we call the “Apex”. During busy times there will be Gate staff here to direct you. There is an empty zone just after the Apex that will allow vehicles in any lane to turn into the Will Call lot.
- Upon reaching the Gate your tickets will be torn and your car searched. Plan ahead for the search and know what items are prohibited.
- After completing the Gate process we will send you down the road to the Greeters, who will give you a map, answer your questions, and give you a hug if you’re lucky.
In-and-out passes are available at the gate for $20 per person. You must have your pass, and your ticket stub, to return to the event. If you need to leave to make a phone call or pick up some emergency sundries, we encourage you to use our Empire-Gerlach bus service.
What happens if you show up at the Gate with no ticket?
There will be no tickets sold at the event. In light of that, it’s more important than ever that our community knows and understands Burning Man’s Gate policy. Here’s what you need to know:
- There are no tickets for sale at the Gate. You will be turned away and not allowed entry if you show up without a ticket.
- If you are giving someone a ride to Burning Man, including ride shares and hitchhikers, please be sure they have a ticket or you may end up driving back to Reno to drop them off. Leaving them at the Gate or in Gerlach is not an option. Washoe County Sheriff will be watching out for people loitering in or around Gerlach.
- Harboring stowaways or assisting people sneaking in is as bad as sneaking in yourself. Any vehicle with stowaways or assisting people sneaking in will have the whole vehicle refused entry with no refund of tickets.
- Anyone caught trying to sneak in to the event or causing a disruption at the Gate or Box Office is subject to citation, fine, and arrest by the BLM.
Finally, we expect long lines coming into the event and going out during Exodus, so arriving or leaving at non-peak times — and exercising patience — is advised.
Volunteer For The Gate
To find out more about volunteering for the gate, click here.