"Toxic" Dust Storm Hits Burning Man, Causing Total Whiteout

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Tuesday, Sep 06, 2022 - 01:00 AM

The final weekend of Burning Man nearly ended earlier as visibility deteriorated to zero during a massive dust storm. 

On Saturday, Burning Man's official Twitter account tweeted the gates into the festival in Nevada's Black Rock Desert were closed "due to whiteout conditions." Event staff requested festivalgoers: 

"Do not drive. Vehicles are becoming stranded and lost on the playa." 

From a distance, the National Weather Service of Reno's stationary cameras captured the moment when dust rolled across the festival area, severely impacting visibility for the tens of thousands of people. 

A passenger on a commercial flight captured a clearer view of the dust storm affecting the festival. 

The dust storm was so big that a weather satellite spotted it. 

On the ground, festivalgoers looked miserable on the last weekend of the nine-day event. The San Francisco Standard pointed out that the dust in the area is full of "alkaline" and is "quite toxic." 

San Francisco Chronicle said the dust storm nearly "ruined the annual torching of a giant wooden effigy." But by late Saturday evening, the gates reopened, and around 2200 local time, the statue went up in flames. 

Toxic dust wasn't the only thing festivalgoers had to worry about -- daytime highs hit triple digits, sending some people home early.