Ex-NASCAR star Danica Patrick escapes Burning Man ‘swamp’

Former NASCAR star Danica Patrick was among the thousands of people stuck over the weekend at the Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert.

Patrick posted an Instagram Story on Sunday to explain her predicament.

Danica Patrick posted on her Instagram Story about the Burning Man festival.

“Made it out. Stuck 3 times and it took 4 hours … but on pavement.

“The challenge from weather really helped show everyone’s true nature at BM and it was to step up and help each other. It is an alternate reality where everyone gives what they can and no money is exchanged,” Patrick continued.

“Too bad that couldn’t be our full reality but for now …. It’s one magical week in the desert. Or swamp this year.”

Danica Patrick posing for a photo.
Former NASCAR star Danica Patrick was among the thousands of people stuck over the weekend at the Burning Man festival.

The week-long celebration attracted almost 80,000 people, who gathered in the Black Rock Desert about 110 miles north of Reno.

But a late-summer storm turned the site into one gigantic pit, trapping tens of thousands in foot-deep mud with no working toilets.

Mud at Burning Man festival.
View of structures in the mud after heavy rain, during the Burning Man event, at the temporary desert settlement of Black Rock City, Nevada, U.S., September 2, 2023.

Rain has been wreaking havoc in the Southwest ever since Tropical Storm Hilary passed through late last month.

On Saturday, water began falling through the roof at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas during UNLV’s season opener.

Mud at Burning Man festival.
The Man structure, which is normally burned on Saturday night, looms over the Burning Man encampment after a severe rainstorm left tens of thousands of revelers attending the annual festival stranded in mud in Black Rock City, in the Nevada desert September 3, 2023.

Sadly, organizers closed the Burning Man festival to vehicles after one death was reported. Officials provided no details of the fatality.

President Joe Biden told reporters in Delaware on Sunday he is aware of the situation at Burning Man, including the death, and the White House is in touch with local officials.

Double rainbow at Burning Man festival.
Attendees look at a double rainbow over flooding on a desert plain on September 1, 2023, after heavy rains turned the annual Burning Man festival site in Nevada’s Black Rock desert into a mud pit.
AFP via Getty Images

The event began Aug. 27 and had been scheduled to end Monday, according to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, which oversees the Black Rock Desert, where the festival was held.

John Asselin, a spokesperson for the Bureau of Land Management, said he had seen “a steady stream” of vehicles leaving the festival site.

“People are getting out,” he said.

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