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Utah Trip II: The Rainbow Gathering: A Trip Report

Rainbow 2014: A Thousand Secret Naturists Come Out to Play

Our destination was the annual national Rainbow Gathering at 9400 feet the Uinta National Forest. I hadn’t been to one since 1998 and this would be DF’s first. It is a gathering of 10 to 15 thousand people that set up an alternative community and live in nature for a period of time. It culminates in a huge circle where everyone prays for world peace. Afterward, the forest is cleaned and rejuvenated to its former self. It is left as though those thousands had never been there. There is a devout sense of Mother Nature. It has been going on since 1972, evolving out of that period’s hippie culture. Yep, it’s back to the sixties!

The National Forest Service and local authorities gather also. There are vicious claims of danger to surrounding communities, and the coming destruction by thousands of naked drug crazed street urchins, which are out to contaminate the local youth. The gathering is actually a peaceful lesson and experiment in anarchy and community. It is fascinating to see how it actually works and succeeds. A town of this size is set up in two weeks with plumbing infrastructure and kitchens that feed everyone for free. Many various social elements come together. For a week it thrives, and then, two weeks later, it is as though it was never there.

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