Friday, 3 June 2016

Packing for Download Festival

So I'm sat here listening to my Babymetal Metal Resistance vinyl and it dawned on me that Download Festival is LESS THAN A WEEK AWAY! Best start getting my sh*t together then! I thought it would be a good idea to create a post on what to take!

I've only been to Download once before, and that was last year. I can honestly say that it changed my life! It helped influence what bands I listen to during the year; introduced me to new bands and it also helped me meet some new friends too! When I went last year I took everything I thought I'd need and it turned out that I took WAY too much and also forgot some essentials. So here are a few things that I think are necessary, based on my experience last year.

Because it's England, expect rain. Disposable ponchos are a great idea as they give you enough room to move and are pretty compact. I took them with me last year, but stupidly didn't take them into the main arena. It started pouring down just before Black Stone Cherry very appropriately opened with their song Rain Wizard. Me and my friend got soaked and I can honestly say it wasn't a pleasant experience for the rest of the day/night. So take rain cover and make sure to take it into the main arena with you!
NOT my photo, during Slipknot in 2015
And because you are likely to get soaked, then spare clothes are also a must! Just a few extras will be enough as you will be able to dry the others off in your tent! So make sure to take enough clothes for the length of time you're there. Make sure you're clothes are suitable too! Although you don't want to end up being wrapped up like a yeti, you also want to make sure that you will be warm enough in case it is a bit chilly!

Keeping on the subject of clothes, good footwear is needed too! Make sure to take some comfortable everyday shoes (that are suitable to walk on grass and mud) because you will be on your feet for the majority of the day, and painful footwear will make it difficult for you to enjoy yourself. You also need to make sure that you take a pair that are suitable to walk through mud and soggy bogs, because as the theme continues,.. rain ruins everything if you're not prepared! Wellies or Doc Martens are a good choice, I took my Docs last year and they were a savior! Pretty sure they still have a bit of Donington dust on them too...
Trusty Docs
The next obvious thing for a festival is... alcohol (as long as you're of age of course... pft)! Make sure you take enough for the weekend, but don't overdo it... there's no point spending £215 on a ticket (I know right...) if you can't remember half of what happened!

If you're drinking a lot of alcohol, you also need a lot of water and non-alcoholic drinks too! One of the most common problems found at festivals is that people get dehydrated. A combination of the alcohol and the fact that you're walking around a lot, and the sun (if it shows up) means that dehydration is easily possible and can cause lots of different problems. So keep your fluids up!

Depending on whether you want to buy food there will also help decide how much food and money you take. Festival food is expensive so if you don't take much food be prepared to fork out a couple of quid for a small bag of chips! I overdid it last year on the food, I took cereals and disposable BBQ's (gas stoves aren't allowed) and loads of tinned things but most of the time I ended up buying food there. By the end of it I ended up throwing away the BBQ's and giving away some of my unopened food just so I didn't have to carry it back. It's a long walk to the campsite so you really want to make sure that you don't over do it on the packing.

Washing is difficult at Download, I haven't tried the showers but I don't think I want to! I've found some great deodorant wipes that are designed to take to festivals. They're really cheap and do work well for a quick freshen up- I bought them from Home Bargains for about 39p! Dry shampoo is great too to stop your hair getting as gross as it could over the 5 days.

Sometimes it can get cold in the summer at night, especially when there are no clouds. This is why it's important to have a good sleeping bag or blanket. I took my summer sleeping bag last year, and it was so cold it made my feet numb! Me and my friend ended up SPOONING because we were both so cold. That's why this year I'm taking my onesie and a duvet.

And last main thing... DON'T FORGET YOUR TICKET!

So I hope this has helped a little bit! If you're more experienced at download than me then please feel free to let me know what to take or what not to bother with! Also, if you are going to Download this year let me know! I hope you have as much fun as I will!


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