Last year I did a series of posts on what to pack, what to wear and which bands not to miss. I aim to do more of the same this year. There are a whole lot of Capetonians heading up North for their first attempt at conquering the Koppi this year, and I wouldn't want them fretting about how to get their braaipacks up when every seasoned Oppikoppi festival goer knows not to take any food.
What to pack for Oppikoppi
I'm sure you're well aware of this, but cellphones really can be quite useful. Not only can you use them to phone your mom when you're missing her, but they also comes in handy when wanting to Instagram artistic pictures of the leafless trees around Oppikoppi. More importantly, you can use your phone to download the Cuervo App (coming soon) which will help you navigate the stages, check out the line up, pin your tent so you can find it on your way back in the dark (you have no idea how useful that is going to be) and send pins to your friends so they can find you too.
It gets really cold at night. Pack enough warm stuff. And then pack one more warm thing. The highveld nights can be bitter and you don't want to have to drink yourself into a tequila-induced stupor just to be able to survive the cold. On second thoughts...
The days are warm. Sometimes, they can even be quite hot. Don't be loco and bring your beach wear though, as the terrain is harsh: dusty, dry, dusty, thorny, limited grass to sit on, dusty, no grass anywhere near your tent etc. Pack stuff that can survive the elements.
You know those shoes you love? Those loafers you bought in Italy that time on Contiki? Don't bring those. (Read above) Bring the pair that you bought at Mr Price last winter and have worn every day since then. The pair that is probably not going to last to another season.
You can take alcohol into the stage area (thank goodness for this) but it needs to be in a plastic bottle. Actually bring two. That way when I lose mine 3 hours into day one I can "forever borrow" your backup.
You know when you've had 17 tequilas and 2 hours sleep and then you step out of your tent and your corneas start to dissolve into placenta and leak out of the corners of your slitty eyes? Bring sunglasses.
Many Many Hairbands & Bobby Pins
Your hair might stay shiny and clean for the whole festival. But I doubt it. Once 20 000 people have kicked up around 4 hours of dust, your hair starts to look like it could use a little wash. Unfortunately, human/shower ratio is around 6000:1 so... hairbands. Hairbands and bobby pins.
Industrial pack. I don't know if you've heard: It's dusty.
The dust, people! You cannot sit on the ground around your camp site. You just cannot. Besides the dust, there are thorns and sticks and broken glass hiding under more dust. Bring a little camping chair.
5 liter Bottle Of Water
Many people, few water points. It's easiest to just brush your teeth at your campsite. It's totally fine. Everyone does it. Just make sure your spit in the bushes.
What To Leave At Home
Your Blow Up Mattress
Blow up mattresses are the number one cause of divorce amongst couples who camp and those who attend festivals. They kill relationships. Rather bring a little foam one. Or sleep on the ground. It's where you'll end up at 4am when your mattress has deflated anyway.
There is so much good festival food at Oppikoppi. Your campsite could be hundreds of metres away from the stage area, all the way out in Mordor and I promise you, you will not feel like braving the walk for a ham and cheese roll from the cooler box in the boot of your car when the burger man is smiling in your direction around lunch time.
Everything now works on card at Oppikoppi. Read all about it here.
Not really. Apparently, if you arrive with a bottle of Cuervo, you even get a free gift. Jose Cuervo goes all out for Oppikoppi. Imagine Cuervo jacuzzi's, fountains, sprinklers...figuratively. Literally though, there is a Cuervo Deck, various Cuervo bars and lots of promotions to look forward to. There will be a lot of tequila. But bring yours anyway. For breakfast.