A Sea of Discarded Burning Man Bikes Sep 12, 2017

I have no words for this. I’m completely floored!

  • People who attend Burning Man are wasteful?! Shocker.

    • I just had no idea there were THAT many bikes there.

      • johnjcoates

        I thought they kind of kept them for each year. So you pick one up from the pile next year and use it for the week and put it back into the pile. Still very wasteful, the whole thing is despite not leaving a trace. How much still is used for the week only and then just removed from the desert and thrown away? I have never been and will never go.

        • Matt O’Donnell

          The playa DESTROYS bikes. It’s the alkaline. People may have this plan, bring the bike back, throw it in the garage, then when they pull it out a year later it’s a rust pot.

          • Yeah and then they roll it into shops and complain about paying $100 for a new chain, chainring plus install and cleaning. Cheap bastards…

          • DopePedaler

            the same chain on the playa only sets you back a few healing crystals

          • Samuel Jackson

            Or a volunteer bike co-op half an hour before closing time the day before they ship out to burning man the following year.

            Ask me how I know.

          • Röbby Sanfranciskö

            LOL relatable content

      • boomforeal
  • Steve Jennings

    there would have to be some gold in there somewhere!

  • Somebody should come in with a few flatbeds, round em all up and take em to the scrap yard. Make a pretty penny on raw materials I’d imagine.

    • boomforeal

      you imagine wrong. i ran a non profile bicycle education and recycling workshop for a few years. we once received over 500 bicycles in a day at a community bike drive, about 100 of which were in such bad shape that they couldn’t be refurbished. volunteers and staff worked for a week to strip these down, saving the decent parts, separating rubber, plastic, metal, aluminum, etc. for recycling. this generated many boxes of tubes that were posted to an outfit in the kootenays that turned them into bags, and several trips to the dump, a rubber recycling facility and a metal recycler. the amount of $ received from the materials we recycled barely put a dent in the gas, staff time and overhead that went into stripping the bikes down and transporting them

      • AdamBike99

        Truth. Scrap yards don’t pay out unless the scrap is paired down to bare steel, aluminum, etc. A complete bike is a complete joke to those guys. And I understand why.

  • breed007

    Pack it in, pack it out?

    • Bil Thorne

      Pack it up, pack it in, let me begin
      I came to win, battle me that’s a sin

      • big Al


  • zebostoneleigh

    Someone forgot to read the rules.

    “Leave no trace. A bike is a BIG trace. Somehow it’s become a common myth (playa legend, perhaps?) that it’s perfectly acceptable to leave your bike behind upon striking your camp. Nothing could be further from the truth. If you pack it in, pack it out!”


  • mp

    How many thousand bikes are in that picture? Amazing.

  • boomforeal
  • robmcnamee

    I worked at a non-profit re-use center for 2 years when I first moved here to Eugene OR. We’d get maybe 50 “playa bikes” donated each year after this event. No one would ever buy them and they’d continue to rot until we recycled them. Mostly because it skeeved people out that naked buttholes were probably on the seats and wherever else at some point.

  • Doug Landers

    Utopian dump

  • Nathan Carballo

    Wait what??! Burning man is full of irresponsible people??? ;)

  • A good friend of mine scored a discarded custom Terry mixte when she wrenched at Burning Man last year…. bunch of dummies.

  • Sean Quill

    So, after the drugs wear off, “pay-it-forward” turns into “I’ll just buy a new one later man.”

  • ChicanoHoodPass

    just saw this update about the bikes at Burning Man:


    • Those bikes will need a ton of care to get them rolling again, but I guess, good on them.