How To Survive Electric Forest | Top 10 Tips

May 10

Electric Forest is a magical experience unlike any other -- an eclectic festival set in a forest that focuses on experience and amazing LED visuals. It's honestly, our favorite festival that we've been to!​​​However, with over 50,000 people in attendance,  extreme climate conditions and a remote forest location going to Electric Forest is not as simple as just showing up and partying! 

So today, we've created a guide with our top 10 tips for surviving Electric Forest!

To make this super simple for our #TurkeyCrew, we've compiled all these tips in a simple free pdf checklist to help you as you plan your next trip to The Forest!! It also has a Electric Forest packing list included! Pick that up here!

Ok now let's jump right in!

#1 Check The Weather

There's a reason that Electric Forest states that their concert occurs rain or shine -- the weather in Michigan can change at any minute, especially during the summer.  1 minute it could be hot and sunny, the next it’s pouring buckets of rain with intense winds.

Before you leave for your trip, make sure you pack for multiple types of weather.   You will want to make sure you pack ponchos and other necessary rain items just in case. Many of these items can be found at the dollar store so don't worry you don’t need to spend too much.

While you are there check the app every morning so you know what to expect for that day. If you see the wind picking up (rain or no rain), take down your canopy and if you have anything else that can blow over fairly easy with excessive wind, take it down. If rain is coming, put all your belongings inside the car and/or tent.

That weather app is your partner in crime and will save your stuff.

While we were there a storm came in that literally destroyed a lot of campsites. We saw canopies completely broken apart and thrown on top of tents. Luckily, our area wasn’t quite as bad, but we did leave some luggage out and Heather’s tennis shoes got soaked (but we were prepared and had a spare pair). 

#2 Bring A Canopy

When it's not pouring rain, it can get pretty hot in Rothbury so putting a canopy over your tent will help keep you cool. Trust us, it sucks waking up on the morning after a whole night of partying just because it's so hot and your soaked in sweat!

A canopy is also perfect for keeping you cool during the day while hanging out with your tribe. Or if you just want to take a nap in the middle of the day! 

Unfortunately, we didn't bring a canopy to Electric Forest, so we had to get creative (a.k.a. we Macgyvered the shit outta it)  and ended up making a make-shift canopy by laying a blanket across two cars and trying to take a nap underneath it. While this worked out pretty well, there wasn’t a whole lot of room so Heather decided to sit in the back of the car and get drunk while everyone else napped! #YOLO

For the blankets, make sure they are thick, dark, and big enough to fit everyone. If you only have 1 car, you can always ask your neighbor because people are pretty nice at Electric Forest. Or a lot of festival goers are into trading so you can offer something in exchange.

Moral of story: save yourself the trouble and just bring a canopy.

#3 Stay Clean

Honestly, wet wipes are your best friend at any type of rave or camping event, so they are definitely a must have at Electric Forest! You can't escape the dust and it will drive you insane lol!

And, trust us, they're so damn useful! Whether it's cleaning your hands after using the porter-potties or wiping yourself off after a full night of dancing in the forest before you go to sleep. 

Solar showers are another absolute must-have for Electric Forest -- or any other camping festival that actually charges you to take showers!

Electric Forest charges $10/shower!!! That's $40/person for 4 days! #Insanity

There's A LOT of other more important festival essentials that we could have bought with that $40/person! If you know what we mean 😉

Like food .....geez you guys have such an illegal mind!

Since we're all about #BallinOnABudget, we decided to get creative and bypass the outrageous $10/shower charge by going to the local Walmart in Rothbury and picking up a portable solar heated shower for $8 instead. If you want don't feel like driving 40 minutes to the nearest Walmart, you can pick one up on Amazon here.

Since Electric Forest actually provides free water at the fountain stations, it's very easy to fill up the solar shower there. In fact, we were too lazy to walk and just decided to drive over to the water fountains and set up our portable solar shower and take a shower right then and there!  

With our bathing suits on!!! Geez you guys, what type of women do you think we are!?

It’s sounds strange, but when your camping anything goes.

Pro Tip

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    If you don't want to drive to the water fountains, an easier way to carry the solar shower (after it's filled it can get pretty heavy) is to put it on a tower and have 2 people hold onto each end of the towel so you can carry it back to your campsite.

#4 Eat Like A Boss

Having a grill at your campsite is so lux and, if you haven't noticed already, this entire survival guide is basically showing you how to be bougie on a budget -- a.k.a. glamping your ass off!

Since we wanted to be fancy AF out there in the forest, a grill was a must-have because we wanted to roast sausages and veggies while drinking cocktails.

Yup, we got it like that 😉

Although we aren't opposed to busting out a charcuterie every now and again, we'll take grilled food over cold peanut butter sandwiches any day!

However, take it from us, you're not allowed to bring charcoal grills into the Electric Forest camping area. They will take it away from you -- a fact we had to learn the hard way -- so don't make our mistake and bring a propane grill.

Since our disposable charcoal grill was confiscated at the camp security check-in, we had to get creative by asking our neighbors if we could do a trade -- use of their grill for use of our solar shower. #FestivalLife

#5 Make It Rain

Whether it's buying food, ice or even a shower, bringing cash is a must at Electric Forest!

Although trading, as we mentioned before, is another form of payment that you can use between other campsites, you'll need cash if you want to purchase something from an official designated Electric Forest store -- like when it's hot as balls and you need some ice for your cocktails (haha see what we did right there?).

The cost of a large bag of ice is $10, but it's more convenient than driving 40 minutes to the "local" Walmart to get it!

#6 Lather It Up

As we’ve mentioned way too many times so far, it gets hot at Electric Forest -- especially when you're partying all day in the sun!

We’re from California, so anything past 80 degrees is torture! It’s about 90-100 degrees with some humidity at the Forest in June, so sunscreen is definitely something you don’t want to forget (unless you liked being cooked alive)

Save the sun burn and grab the sunscreen

#7 Rest In Style

Let's face it, sometimes you just need a nap! And what point is partying in the forest if you can't string up your hammock between 2 trees and take a little break right?

Although Electric Forest is a camping festival, when you're partying the last thing you want to do is walk ALL THE WAY back to your campsite just to rest for a few minutes. So why not pull up to a tree and watch the set of your fav dj in style?

Hammocks are hugely popular at Electric Forest -- you'll see them lining the trees everywhere inside the event. The best part is that you don't have to carry it with you everywhere you go -- instead, just pick a couple trees, set it up and come back to it whenever you need it!

Not into hammocks, don't worry we got you Turkeys! We got you!

Another great alternative is an air seater -- essentially a portable inflatable chair. We're sure you've seen a video about how they work: you literally just run around to fill it with air and then fold it up to tighten it. Then, just set it down and sit. It compresses and packs up easily so it can go with you anywhere during the event without much work. 

Ok, well getting the air in it is easier said than done, but it fits a couple people and is way more lux and comfortable than sitting on the ground.

#8 Bring Rain Boots

By now, you've picked up that Rothbury, Michigan can have some pretty erratic weather. While we've mostly focused on how to prepare yourself for the heat, when the weather takes a turn for crazy town you’re going to want to pull out those rain boots!

It can get pretty muddy out there! We're talking about falling in the mud during the beginning of the film Bridget Jones Baby type of mud! (Haven't seen that yet, catch that clip here)

Remember you are in a forest full of dirt, so that rain will turn hard packed dirt into mud real quick so tennis shoes are just not going to cut it. Having those rain boots will make things less wet and dirty and in the end make your life that much happier while dancing hard to some awesome tunes.

#9 Stay Hydrated & Fed

This should be pretty obvious, but many times we underestimate just how much we really need.

There is a lot of walking, dancing, and running about chasing fairies so you need to keep yourself energized. Make sure you have enough snack foods for each day.  

We recommend bringing a water backpack and continuously filling it at the designated water filling stations at the event and bringing some snacks as well!

On the first day, a trip to Walmart to pick up your festival essentials is super necessary. Your shopping list should include: 

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    Quick and easy breakfast items. We recommend bagels and cream cheese or fruit because it's easy to store.
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    Sandwich Ingredients. Buy enough so that each person can have 1-2 sandwiches per day.
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    Sausages and/or hotdogs that are easy to cook.
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    Pre-chopped vegetables (like zucchini and bell peppers). It can be a pain to chop it yourself, so if you don’t want to do that you can buy a package of the pre-chopped ones and throw it on the grill.
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    Disposable ice chest. As mentioned above you will need ice and having this will come in handy not only to keep your food cool, but also for making those drinks nice and crisp!
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    Ice. Buy enough to fill the ice chest, usually 2 or 3 bags.
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    Any items from the main list above that you don’t have, we recommend buying as well -- like toilet paper because, trust us, that shit is gold while camping!

Above all else, remember to STAY HYDRATED!!! The amount of water you should have is 2 jugs per person for the whole weekend. Or better yet, just buy a couple jugs and fill them up when you need more at the water stations. Free-R-Us!!!

For the festival, we recommend picking up a camel backpack, so you can refill at the free refill stations while also having your hands free as you dance!

With the level of shenanigans that happens at this event, trust us, you will need as much water as you can get!

#10 Get Enough Sleep

You can try and go 4 nights without sleeping, but we wouldn’t recommend it -- you won’t remember much and just feel crazy the whole time. At an event like this it can be pretty difficult to get enough sleep because people are all around you and the music plays until 3am, but it can be done -- a.k.a. party all night and sleep all day #YOLO.

Some days are easier than others to get enough sleep and some days you'll be tempted by organized daytime activities, like group yoga or crafts, but just pick and choose the ones you want to go to and use the rest of the time to catch up on your sleep. 

If you’re having trouble sleeping, you could take a couple melatonin pills to help you get a deeper sleep (they're completely natural)

Ok Turkeys, we hope you liked these tips and we can't wait to hear all your Electric Forest stories!! Leave us a comment below about what you are most excited about seeing in the forest!

And if you have any of your own Electric Forest survival tips that we didn't list here, let us know too! We would LOVE to hear about it!

Heading to the forest? Be sure to download your free copy of our Ultimate Electric Forest Survival Checklist that has all of these tips listed in a convenient pdf as well as a quick packing list -- perfect for checking off as you're packing!

Later we'll be deep diving into our other Electric Forest tips like:  Top 5 Tips For How To Save Money and 5 Things You'll Love and Hate About Electric Forest! So definitely stay tuned for that!

Till net time Turkey Crew! Peace Out!

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