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Burning Man access is closed as heavy rains muddy the playa

Nobody can go in or out of Burning Man after heavy rainfall on Friday turned the desert floor of the playa into impassible, sticky mud, prompting the Festival’s organizers late last night to ask as many as 70,000 attendees to shelter in place (via SFGate). Organizers reposted a similar message to the Burning Man Traffic account on X (formerly Twitter) around 12PM ET today.

An estimated 6 inches of rain soaked the festival Friday, according to The Associated Press, citing the National Weather Service in Reno, and another quarter of a foot of rain could fall this evening into Sunday.

The Bureau of Land Management released a statement on Saturday saying festival officials and the Pershing County Sheriff’s Office “have closed ingress to the Burning Man event effective immediately and for the remainder of the event,” as quoted in the Reno Gazette Journal, and the bureau added that “more rain is expected over the next few days,” saying conditions weren’t expected to improve enough to allow for driving on the playa.

Journalist Scott Budman, who reports for NBC in the San Francisco Bay Area, posted a video filmed by Josh Keppel at Burning Man, showing the still-wet and muddy grounds and people walking through it:

User Ivoryringlord posted at 1PM PT, showing more cloud cover and discussing the conditions. He noted that it was beginning to rain again:

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