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Thread: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

  1. #1
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    I'm sick of continually reposting in all these peoples threads who are traveling and asking about the essentials, so here it is, my one last hoorah on helping people...

    First off, READ THIS

    http://www.coachella.com/forum/showt...Survival-Kit**

    Now once you make a kit having those items, and yes, don't be dumb, get a small bag together and make this kit with band aids, Advil, Benadryl, etc. etc. now we can move on. If you don't make the kit you'll likely forget an item or 2 and that's going to ruin you or cause extreme discomfort.

    other misc. items I'd bring not listed from the Survival kit-

    A power strip, if you go to a charging station having a power strip could be a lot easier to handle/manage your groups phone and also easier to keep an eye on, people have had their stuff stolen at charging stations, BE CAREFUL

    Zip ties - in case something breaks with your canopy, tent, anything really zip ties are essential and will most likely come in handy.

    What GEAR do you NEED? Here I have listed what many of us consider to be the essential items in car camping, you can find better deals than this but for those of you traveling I am listing Walmart items so you can buy them and use Site-to-Store pickup and just grab the items and head to the festival.

    This list is based off of a group of 4, plan accordingly if you have more/less, etc.

    Canopy - it's arguably the most difficult thing to get/bring while traveling but I believe (as well as many others on this board believe) it's the most important item of car camping. If you can't bring it or buy it, then you can't and you will have to make do without it but IT WILL HELP A LOT. There is no shade on the campgrounds and the sun is UP and SHINING and HOT starting at 6am.

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Ozark-Trai...ndingMethod=rr

    Tarp - for the canopy, you can use tarps to create extra shade so sleeping in or just chilling will be a lot more comfortable.

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Heavy-Duty...-x-10/16561634

    Sleeping bag - don't need anything fancy

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Ozark-Trai...Best%20Sellers

    Tent- It's nice but not really needed if you have a canopy you can sleep under it in a sleeping bag or cot and you will feel the nice breeze and get sleep w/o a tent, but if you want to "smush" "do sex" as the douchebags from Jersey Shore would say, a tent is pretty crucial for privacy.

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Wenzel-Alp...-Gold/13228636


    Chairs- you may not be at the campsite that much but you may be at it enough to want to sit on something above ground to relax

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Ozark-Trai...Chair/16386297

    Food and snacks- Defintely stock up on snacks, chips, trail mix, fruit and veggies. If you want real food though and to save A LOT of money over the weekend you'll need the next 2 items. Most items at the festival (inside/out) will cost you about $9-$15 an entree, that adds up quick. You're looking at about $120 on basic meals and if you're a big eater like me, it's really expensive.

    Cooler - With a decent cooler I suggest buying dry ice, Smart & Final has dry ice, also there is a dry ice place off the 10 freeway not too far from the festival that sells dry ice, I bought DI from them last year and it worked out good, if you are bringing food into the festival keeping them cold is essential and you do not want food poisoning.

    Here is a basic cooler that would work fine- http://www.walmart.com/ip/Igloo-Isla...ooler/16437961

    for those in california and/or traveling and not flying freeze all liquids like water, lemonade, gatorade, juice ahead of time and you'll have massive ice blocks, it will save you money in buying ice.

    Ps. if you're using dry ice- DO NOT TOUCH IT WITH YOUR HANDS and wrap it up in newspaper or a towel or something, it will keep it insulated and make it last all weekend long.

    Camp stove- Pretty obvious, if you have food you'll need to cook it, REMEMBER get a propane stove.

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Buffalo-To...Stove/17368377
    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Brinkmann-...Stove/15728638

    Propane Tanks - You can't get them online but they will have them in store, Walmart's have a 2 pack for like... 5 something, about $6 after tax, 2 tanks will last you all weekend long, (unless you have a massive group and you're always using it).

    2 Pack propane tank
    Cheaper than the Coleman

    Table - to cook on, and prep on, now DO NOT BUY THIS LINK, they have these tables in stores for 14.99 individually, and you will just need one.

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Cosco-26-P...-of-4/13269099

    NON-ESSENTIAL AMAZING ITEMS!

    Mister - http://www.coachella.com/forum/showt...l-Mist-Thread/

    Portable shower - http://www.walmart.com/ip/Coghlans-S...Shower/8586959 hang that from your Canopy, CAREFULLY and you can shower at the camp site, http://www.walmart.com/ip/Intex-Beac...-Pool/16521297 put that pool under the shower and it won't be all wet at your campsite.

    Kitchen - A kitchen set up is awesome. They have folding kitchens and you may want to look into some of the options.

    2013 UPDATE!

    One situation that has came up much worse than in previous years is the wind was much worse and the weather was much colder than usual. Lower your ez-ups when you leave for the day. If you do not plan on coming back or are not sure if your group will be around I suggest this. I was at camp when the winds really kicked up on day 1 and I saved our camp by lowering everything.

    I have to admit though, when it's cold at Coachella life is a lot more bearable and you can travel much lighter didn't even use my mister once last year.

    Rain Fly- if you do not have an ez-up over your tent or something covering your tent I would suggest making sure you have a rain fly and make sure you get a tarp to put under your tent.

    REMEMBER If the winds kick up, lower your ez up.

    I made it a habit that each day I left I lowered my ez up and never had any issues.


    2014 update!!!


    I would suggest picking up a smaller solar panel just for charging your phone. Everyone should have one at this point.

    I use this,

    http://www.amazon.com/FreeLoader-Pro.../dp/B002DMLKT8

    It works really well. Charges pretty fast and it's pretty durable.
    Last edited by Dustin da DnB Soulja; 03-24-2014 at 12:25 PM.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  2. #2
    Member alyssaf12's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Awesome. Thanks! You're wonderful for doing this!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Great post! Thanks

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    Member DirtyPistol's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Yeah pretty sweet post, thanks! After 5 Coachellas of staying in houses and shitty motels last year was my first time car camping and I absolutely loved it. My only complaint was my tent turning into an unbearable sweat lodge at 7am. Combined with late night partying I think I was only able to sleep about 10 hours in 3 nights combined... I plan on doing it again this year and by reading this and other posts it looks like a tarp attached to a canopy is the best way to get some shade for your tent as so you can sleep in. Anyone have any pictures to post of some of their tarp to canopy contraptions?

  5. #5
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Quote Originally Posted by DirtyPistol View Post
    Yeah pretty sweet post, thanks! After 5 Coachellas of staying in houses and shitty motels last year was my first time car camping and I absolutely loved it. My only complaint was my tent turning into an unbearable sweat lodge at 7am. Combined with late night partying I think I was only able to sleep about 10 hours in 3 nights combined... I plan on doing it again this year and by reading this and other posts it looks like a tarp attached to a canopy is the best way to get some shade for your tent as so you can sleep in. Anyone have any pictures to post of some of their tarp to canopy contraptions?
    I'll do a dry run within a month, that will have the canopy and the solar panels and my whole set up but zip ties man. I got reflective tarp from Harbor Freight, http://www.harborfreight.com/9-ft-6-...lin-30874.html use a 20% off coupon and do like 2-3 transactions (means you can use 3 20% off coupons) and zip tie the eye holes in the tarp to the canopy where need be.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  6. #6

    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Love this idea. Thanks Dustin. This is my 3rd Coachella and I always loved coming to one particular thread to pick up some camping tips. You even linked to the Survival Guide which I lurked hard before my first year. Thanks.

    Side Note:
    Anyone notice that the 2012 Festival Map is up now? I don't remember there being Car Camping behind Lake Eldorado the past two years. If I remember right, that area was reserved for parking. I myself am looking forward to making it into Lot 5 again.

  7. #7
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Den View Post
    Love this idea. Thanks Dustin. This is my 3rd Coachella and I always loved coming to one particular thread to pick up some camping tips. You even linked to the Survival Guide which I lurked hard before my first year. Thanks.

    Side Note:
    Anyone notice that the 2012 Festival Map is up now? I don't remember there being Car Camping behind Lake Eldorado the past two years. If I remember right, that area was reserved for parking. I myself am looking forward to making it into Lot 5 again.
    They added lot 7 as car camping.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

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    Member PrettyToneBK's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Finally... what has been said about camping hardware all over countless pages in one neat post. Thanks Dustin.
    Reee hee hee hee heallyyyyy?

  9. #9
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Quote Originally Posted by PrettyToneBK View Post
    Finally... what has been said about camping hardware all over countless pages in one neat post. Thanks Dustin.
    Yeah I was sick of us repeating ourselves CONSTANTLY and the past 2 years Car Camping has changed so I thought the original camping survival kit needed an update, hopefully this saves a lot of us from retyping everything.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  10. #10
    Member dcbell05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Dustin, thank you for putting this together! I remember HOW LONG I spent on the boards last year to find all the same info.

    Personally, we brought a lot of food that was pre-cooked and could be eaten cold to avoid having to cook. Things like sandwiches, including cold cuts, egg salad, peanut butter and jelly (make sure it's not in a glass bottle!). Cold pasta salad was good. And then we brough ingredients for fresh guac (Pico de Gallo, Avocados, blend of spices in a ziplock, and lime) and made fresh guac and chips. Then of course we brought a bunch of fresh fruit (apples, bananas, carrots, GRAPES- which cold, were' a HUGE hit) and alcohol fruit (vodka watermelon ice cold in the afternoon was AMAZING. Plus we shared with neighbors and made a ton of friends. We plan to add rum soaked Pineapple this year).

    Most of the time it was so hot, we didn't want to put too much effort into making food. I saw a few people making food, but it just seemed way too hot and too much effort. I DID get a Pink's hot dog one day and a gyro another day to try some of the food. That way we saved money, but got to try a couple different tents.

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    old school instinct's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    THIS POST SUCKS!! BUT OUTKAST 2013!!!!!!!!

    OUTKAST 2014
    it's finally happening

    Röyksopp, FC Kahuna, Télépopmusik, The Knife, RJD2, Futue Sound of London, The Avalanches, 808 State, Zero 7, Tycho, Mr. Scruff



  12. #12
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Quote Originally Posted by instinct View Post
    THIS POST SUCKS!! BUT OUTKAST 2013!!!!!!!!
    Shut up Greg, change your signature too.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

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    Member blackchango's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Thanks for putting all of this together dude !
    Quote Originally Posted by captncrzy View Post
    Is that written in some sort of underground rat language I'm not familiar with?

  14. #14
    old school SepaGroove's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    This is the most helpful thread I've seen on here thus far. Good job man. I'm not even camping this year either, but I'm going to tell my friends that are about this

  15. #15
    Member wstsidela's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    These Coleman LED string lights were the MVP in my camp last year. There were cheap, used one set of batteries all weekend, & gave off a great light. I'm bringing 4 or 5 this year.



    http://www.coleman.com/coleman/Colem...5#.TxsheoG7-So
    "Well, that's just like, you know... your opinion, man"

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    I'll never forget that first year of car camping. Fears of people twisted on LSD accidentally plowing through campsites. Who woulda thought a bunch of hippies could keep it together like we have.

  17. #17
    old school instinct's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    I've had it since 08 or 09.. changing the year every year.

    I've pretty much lost all hope on an Outkast reunion

    OUTKAST 2014
    it's finally happening

    Röyksopp, FC Kahuna, Télépopmusik, The Knife, RJD2, Futue Sound of London, The Avalanches, 808 State, Zero 7, Tycho, Mr. Scruff



  18. #18
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Quote Originally Posted by instinct View Post
    I've had it since 08 or 09.. changing the year every year.

    I've pretty much lost all hope on an Outkast reunion
    I just meant update the year and get rid of M83 who did get booked, ha. FSoL one day =(
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  19. #19
    Member KennKenna's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    This is great. Thanks so much.
    Friday
    Modest Mouse, Passion Pit, Of Monsters and Men, Earl Sweatshirt, Aesop Rock, The Neighborhood

    Saturday

    The XX, Phoenix, Grizzly Bear, Violent Femmes, Two Door Cinema Club


    Sunday

    Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Vampire Weekend, Grimes, Unicorn Kid, Wu-Tang Clan

  20. #20
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Glad you guys are getting help from this, I'll start adding more tips for people driving to the campsite, a lot of tips and tricks to make your camping experience that much better.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  21. #21
    Member Cactuskev's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Great post!

    I'll echo the food thing - simple and cool is the way to go, and prep as much as you can before you go.

    Here's a couple more small tips that worked for me:

    Get one of those magnetic keyholders that you can hide a key in, so you can lock your vehicle and leave the key with it. The you don't have to worry about losing your keys - plus the other people in your party can have access to the car if you get separated or they return to camp early.

    Have a couple lights handy and keep em in the same place before you head out each night, so when you stumble back to camp in the dark, you can find your way to more beer.

    Use two coolers - one for food and one for beers and mixers. In the food cooler, use frozen 2 liter bottles of water - keeps everything cool with out getting the food soggy, and you get cold water.

    The night before the fest, throw a bag of ice in the beer cooler to precool it. Just before you head out, empty that ice, fill the cooler with beers/drinks and then put fresh ice on top (since cold sinks).

    Carry the bare minimum of stuff in your wallet - ID, credit card and cash. The less you carry, the less you're bummin' if you lose it.

    Embrace the scene! The music and art and people are awesome, but the camping vibe is just as sweet! Don't get too caught up in the logistics of it all and forget to have a great time!

  22. #22
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Yeah use a cooler for a freezer that's being opened once in a while and cooler that's alwayss being open. Freeze waters, lemonade, food, pull them out in the morning, it will keep the cooler cold yet defrost. Had vodka lemonade ice slushies all weekend and it was great.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  23. #23

    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Has anyone ever tried an evaporative cooler before? Mister setups seem popular, and there is some discussion of hand-held coolers in the equipment deals thread. A full evaporative cooler like this one:

    http://www.amazon.com/SPT-SF-608R-Po...7266372&sr=8-1

    At 60W power, and suited to hot/dry climates, this seems doable with a deep-cycle batter and inverter.

  24. #24
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Quote Originally Posted by FelonyFruitFlinger View Post
    Has anyone ever tried an evaporative cooler before? Mister setups seem popular, and there is some discussion of hand-held coolers in the equipment deals thread. A full evaporative cooler like this one:

    http://www.amazon.com/SPT-SF-608R-Po...7266372&sr=8-1

    At 60W power, and suited to hot/dry climates, this seems doable with a deep-cycle batter and inverter.
    Massive hassle, not likely to work, might only cool right in front of the unit. Even in a tent it won't cool enough probably.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  25. #25

    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    I certainly wouldn't try putting it in my tent. It isn't small--I was thinking of putting it in a typical semi-enclosed canopy to provide a little relief during the morning heat. I may be bringing a deep-cycle battery and inverter anyways.

  26. #26
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Quote Originally Posted by FelonyFruitFlinger View Post
    I certainly wouldn't try putting it in my tent. It isn't small--I was thinking of putting it in a typical semi-enclosed canopy to provide a little relief during the morning heat. I may be bringing a deep-cycle battery and inverter anyways.
    I would just go with a mister, you're running a risk of hauling it for no reason, and spending that time and effort. My girlfriend and I were FREEZING all weekend under the mister. With the winds of Indio unless you're in a enclosed place the wind will probably blow away any cold air you get, but I dunno if it's in those Geodesic domes they use at Burning Man, it may work, but if it's not completely enclosed I dunno how it would work.
    Last edited by Dustin da DnB Soulja; 01-22-2012 at 07:50 PM.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  27. #27
    Coachella Junkie Mugwog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Get a fanny pack.

  28. #28

    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    We have always used a simple inverter to power lights/charge phones and it always works great and let's you have some nice lights other than those very bright spot lights they have on in the campgrounds (we used rope lights threaded underneath our canopy to light the night it works great). You don't need a 1000w inverter or anything just a simple 400w will do fine http://www.harborfreight.com/400-wat...ter-66814.html Run it off a deep cycle battery that costs $100 and can be recharged using this http://www.harborfreight.com/5-watt-...ger-41144.html which will put a slow float charge on it and keep it from running down. These batteries can last for 100's of recharge cycles if they aren't taken down too low so the cost is very low considering the advantages. Charges phones much faster than any charging station and gives you power for a lot of things without killing the car battery and having to run the engine constantly. Plus you make friends when they realize you have a charging station and some cool lights with good music playing at reasonable hours of course
    Coachella '10, '11, '12 (w2), '13 (w1), '14 (w1) and hopefully every one after

    "I was born with music inside me. Music was one of my parts. Like my ribs, my kidneys, my liver, my heart. Like my blood. It was a force already within me when I arrived on the scene. It was a necessity for me-like food or water."
    Ray Charles

  29. #29
    Member Dustin da DnB Soulja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    I use a solar set up that powers everything. Use a jump starter battery and use an inverter to use the solar set up directly.
    COACHELLA 2014

    DAFT PUNK,... Ronald Jenkees! Outkast!! Prodigy! Faithless! Underworld! London Elektricity! (live set) Future Sound of London! DJ Yoda (DVJ Set!) Dillinja and Lemon D w/ the Valve Soundsystem, Ed Solo & Deekline! Dizzee Rascal!

  30. #30

    Default Re: Coachella 2012 - The Essential Guide To Car Camping

    Also as far as food goes I like to do most of what has already been mentioned but few things I like that aren't mentioned:

    Pre-Cooked ribs - for those who want to have something really good for one day make some ribs and put them in vacuum seal bags and then just open them up and heat on the grill and add bbq sauce

    Fruit - cut up any type of fruit and freeze it before the fest and then you can eat it all festival long (I think grapes were mentioned which are my favorite, blueberries good too but give you blue fingers

    Veggies - Potatoes, onion and peppers for brats, etc also cut up before you leave to avoid trying to do it while you are under the influence of your drink/drug of choice

    Finding your campsite: they have street names which helps but when trying to direct your friends to your camp site a flag or some sort of marker usually does wonders. I own a large red metal fat tire beer sign that we mark our camp with along with our ASU flag so people can always find us. And yes we do bring fat tire in cans

    I'm sure I will think of some more stuff
    Coachella '10, '11, '12 (w2), '13 (w1), '14 (w1) and hopefully every one after

    "I was born with music inside me. Music was one of my parts. Like my ribs, my kidneys, my liver, my heart. Like my blood. It was a force already within me when I arrived on the scene. It was a necessity for me-like food or water."
    Ray Charles

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