50,000 people made their way out to the desert of Nevada to the creation of Black Rock City for the Burning Man 2011 art and music festival themed passage of rites.
For the first time Burning Man has sold out - a vast change from its beginning 25 years ago, according to Burning Man's official website.
The origins of the festival stem from a beach fire created by Larry Harvey and Jerry James in Baker Beach, San Francisco. The fire turned into an annual event.
Let's build a statue and burn it, said Harvey on the simple intentions Burning Man began with.
In 1990, police attempted to block the burning of the ritual statue, dubbed burning man, due to the fire hazard. The event took a twist when participants decided to jump into vehicles and head for the dry lake bed of Black Rock, or the playa as it's called by participants. The conditions of the desert bring new challenges with white out conditions and intense heat.
Today, Burning Man has created an alternative culture based on ten principles. These principles include leaving no trace, decommodification, and radical inclusion.The society only exists for one week, before it vanishes. Participants must take out what they brought in. Decommodification means there are no corporations or advertisements inside of the city or promoting the events. Part of this is a gifting community where everyone joins together to share a talent or supplies.
Have a look at the first images from this year's event: