Whether you’re interested in taking shrooms for the first time or have tripped dozens of times before, there’s always more to learn about how to navigate your way throughout the experience.
Stepping into a new adventure without being ready for it can lead to unexpected happenings, and that’s what you don’t want to attract while you’re tripping on the magic mushroom. Your first journey with this ancient tool should take place in a safe environment among the people who you trust and are familiar with. The following guidelines will shed light on all of your questions and concerns about the effect of this medicinal plant.
The key points that strongly affect the intensity of your trip are “Dosage”, “Mindset”, and “Setting”.
HOW DO YOU GET STARTED?
The following pointers are some tips to consider when preparing for your first magic mushroom trip:
- Choose your guide – A positive experience begins with choosing an experienced guide you trust and feel comfortable around. Taking magic mushrooms for the first time can be intimidating and overwhelming, so it’s best to go with a sitter who has been there before. They will help you maintain your connection to reality if you start to lose your grip.
- Choose an environment that is safe for you – You should take mushrooms in a place where you feel comfortable and relaxed. A peaceful experience will be more enjoyable than a risky one. If planning a trip in nature, check the weather beforehand and download an offline map to ensure you won’t get lost. You would feel cold under mushroom effects, and keeping yourself warm is important.
- Set your intention – Focusing on the reasons why you are taking mushrooms may help the energy and attention flow in the right direction. If you have a journal, you could write down your intention inside. Intentions can be like an anchor, creating a framework for the journey and providing something to return to for grounding when the seas get rough.
- Unplug – Plan your trip on a day when you don’t have work or family obligations, so you can fully disconnect from technology (read: turn off your phone). Receiving a call or text during your trip related to your day-to-day responsibilities may cause unnecessary distraction. However, depending on your preference, you might want to prepare a carefully curated music playlist to enhance the depth of your experience.
- Take a moment to check your emotional state – You should always check in with your emotional state, no matter how experienced you are. Taking well-rested and emotionally balanced shrooms makes you more likely to experience profound perceptual changes.
- Diet: What to eat – Fasting will increase the effect of shrooms because there won’t be anything in your stomach to compete for digestion; therefore, the onset time may occur faster. Magic mushrooms can bring nausea and even vomiting, so it’s best to fast for 4-8 hours pre-journey. If you are going to prepare with dietary changes before the trip, consider eating vegetarian food for at least one day before your journey. Indigenous cultures view this as a way to raise consciousness in preparation for the medical session.
- Drink water – Being hydrated is very important. Sipping on the water is not as hydrating as drinking it gradually for a few hours, so try to prepare ahead of time. Staying hydrated may fend off a headache after the journey. This kind of emotional work can be very draining and dehydrating to the body- sometimes more than physical exertion.
Now that we’ve covered how best to prepare for your trip, keep on reading to learn about the phases of the experience, the main effects, and the recommended dosage.
WHAT ARE THE PHASES YOU GO THROUGH?
The ONSET (the first 20-60 minutes of the trip)
Twenty minutes to an hour and a half after ingestion, the mushrooms should start to take effect. Commonly known as the “come up,” this is a period of change where you are entering into an entirely different state. It can be uncomfortable, so remember to breathe and focus on your intention without trying to control what’s happening. You could try working with affirmations such as let go, be open, and trust the process.
The PEAK (1-4 hours after dosing)
The period when the strongest subjective effects of the mushroom are usually experienced.
The peak typically lasts about 2-3 hours, depending on the type and potency of the mushroom.
The COMEDOWN (4-6 hours after dosing)
After the peak is “the comedown”. Depending on the aforementioned factors that impact the length of the peak, this period can last 2-4 hours or more. As the body metabolizes the psychedelic, the subjective effects become less intense. This may be a time of emotional catharsis, reflection, and processing of the experience internally or outwardly with your sitter, guide or therapist.
HOW DO YOU GET AFFECTED BY THE MAGIC OF SHROOMS?
The psychoactive and physical effects of magic mushrooms vary from person to person. That said, some generic experiences are associated with a typical mushroom journey. So what kind of effects should you expect?
The psychedelic effects may take 20 minutes to two hours to kick in, so patience is the key (especially if you are a first-time user). Once it takes effect, the feeling of euphoria, excitement, and boosted energy will arise. People have often described the feeling in awe of the world around them. The likelihood of this is higher if you’re tripping in nature.
Different people respond differently to hallucinogens. The hallucinations you experience can differ from mild to vivid, depending on the person. An adverse reaction may occur when you are in an unsafe environment or are around people you do not trust. Paranoia, anxiety, and panic may be exhibited as a result of these effects. An urge to vomit may arise in extreme situations.
Keep in mind that you can often return to a positive experience by changing your environment or moving away from the offending people. This is an excellent example of when you can benefit from having an experienced trip guide.
It’s now time to explore the duration of a shroom high – how long does a shroom high last, and how is this affected by mushroom type, consumption form, and dosage?
IS IT POSSIBLE TO BUILD A TOLERANCE TO THE EFFECTS OF SHROOMS?
Psilocybin tolerance is about how strongly you respond to the effects of shrooms. The term “tolerance” in health and medicine refers to your body’s response to a substance.
Shrooms are not considered to be addictive, nor do they cause compulsive use. One reason is that the intense experience, which can be physically and mentally challenging, may cause people using psilocybin to limit their frequency of use.
Another reason is that the human body quickly builds tolerance to psilocybin. People require much higher doses after only a few days of repeated use, making it extremely difficult to have any effect after more than four days of repeated usage.
You may be more familiar with building tolerance towards alcohol or opioid substances, as the people who use opioids will reach a point where they NEED to increase their dosage through to reach the same level of intoxication. The good news is that psilocybin tolerance is different than substances such as alcohol and opioids, the studies have proven a low potential for abuse and violent behaviors under the effect of psilocybin. Actually, the currently running psilocybin clinical trials have shown that psilocybin mushrooms are efficacious in treating alcohol, nicotine and opioid additions.
Rest assured no matter how far you push your tolerance it will only last for a short time. Even a small shroom break will get your tolerance back to where it used to be.
HOW LONG DOES A SHROOM HIGH LAST?
How long a shroom high lasts depends on several factors. From your age and body type to all the different types of mushrooms, dosage can play a big role in the duration of your trip.
Some contributing factors to the length of mushroom high are as below:
- The form you choose to consume (i.e., dried vs. fresh)
- Your mental/ emotional state when you take the shrooms
- What are your expectations for the trip?
- Your tolerance level
- Whether you’ve taken other substances at the same time or not
- If you are under the use of medication (like antidepressants and SSRIs)
It’s important to note that when people speak about their mushroom experience, they typically refer to the trip’s peak. Depending on the dose, this peak is usually 4-6 hours. There is a time leading up to the peak and a time after the shrooms have come down as part of the trip experience.
Shroom experiences can last between three and six hours. Remember, based on metabolism, this time can vary from individual to individual. In some cases, the afterglow effects of shrooms can last as long as a few weeks after the trip has ended, so it is often overlooked as part of the shroom’s high.
HOW IS TRIP LENGTH IMPACTED BY CONSUMPTION METHOD?
The answer to this question always depends on who you ask. Some experienced trippers might insist on eating dried shrooms, while others say taking them fresh is the only way to go. Ultimately, you are the one to decide which method is most enjoyable and effective for you.
The best method to take shrooms is to take them with chocolates or honey. Chocolate would be best, specially if you can weight and grind your mushroom properly and make your own chocolate bar.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN FRESH MUSHROOMS AND DRIED ONES?
There has been much debate about whether a mushroom trip lasts longer when it is fresh vs dried. Some trippers report a more intense trip when using fresh mushrooms. Depending on the dehydration method, it may oxidate the psilocin content in raw mushrooms , which may make them slightly less potent. However, fresh mushrooms lose their potency in a day or two after harvesting! Therefore, unless you grow your own mushrooms, the chance to have access to fresh mushrooms is usually low.
You should know that fresh mushrooms are about 10 times heavier than dry mushrooms. This weight difference is due to the water content in the mushroom texture. It means that for a typical Golden Teacher experience, if you aim to take 2 grams of dry mushrooms, it will be equivalent to 20 grams of fresh magic mushrooms.
Despite this, we strongly recommend that you do not experiment with mushrooms that grow in nature since they can be poisonous.
WAIT? CHECK OUT SHAFAA’S DRIED MAGIC MUSHROOMS
SHROOM TEA vs EATING
Shroom tea is a bit more pleasant to consume than dried mushrooms on its own and it is also much easier on the stomach. This is because the mushrooms are essentially cooked into extracts. Dried mushrooms make consumers nauseous because the raw chitin that makes up the fungi’s cell walls is notoriously difficult to digest. Ten to fifteen minutes of steeping in hot water breaks down chitin and other hard-to-digest compounds in mushrooms’ fruiting bodies.
Mushroom tea is also quite efficacious in bringing on a faster, more intense shroom trip. However, the trip’s duration tends to be marginally shorter. In consuming dried mushrooms, absorption and digestion simply take longer.
THE IMPORTANCE OF DOSAGE
Every person will experience their unique magic mushroom trip – even if you all use the same consumption method simultaneously. Why is this? Earlier, we identified some contributing factors affecting how long a shroom high lasts, but the dosage is the most important factor.
From microdosing to the “heroic” shrooms dosage, your trip can vary significantly from the next person. On average, first-time trippers are advised to consume either a microdose (0.1 to 0.5 grams) or a safe dose (1 to 2 grams). This will allow you to observe your reactions before deciding to increase your amount.
Doing the dosing right, will compensate for the set and setting, if they are not thoughtfully taken care of. For example if you are given mushrooms in a recreational setting, like a party, make sure to never go beyond 0.5 gram of dried mushrooms. The lower dose allows you to not get traumatized due to an unexpected intense experience.
Doses of 3 to 5 grams of mushrooms are only recommended to intermediate and advanced users. If you are a first timer, never opt in for a heroic first experience. This will not make an elevating experience for you and your body will react negatively to mushrooms the next times.
When you’re just starting your psilocybin journey, it’s best to start slowly. In the case of dry mushrooms, know that mushroom caps are way more potent than the stems. If you are taking them in other formats (capsules, tea or edibles), the ground mushrooms powder is homogenized, i.e. the potency of caps and stems are normalized.
Our best advice for any first timer who wants to start without a sitter is to start with half a gram dosage and sit in stillness. Half a gram allows the user to gauge her metabolism and the intensity of the experience. Then she can confidently gauge it up to 1.5 or 2 grams in the next trials.
THE FINAL WORD: DO NOT TAKE IT LIGHTLY!
For those of us with chronic, mental or physical health conditions, tripping on shrooms can be risky or at least require extra support before, during and after your psychedelic experience. It’s important to note that mushrooms are not recommended for everyone.
The main potential contradictions for psilocybin mushroom experiences include heart conditions, psychotic spectrum disorder, pregnancy and/or breastfeeding and medications that interact with serotonin receptors. If this applies to you or you have other medical conditions, you need to do more research or possibly consult a doctor on whether psilocybin can interfere with your meds or not.
All in all, a mushroom trip isn’t something to be taken lightly and you should prepare yourself with a plan like you would with any other journey. The shroom dosage, set and setting plus method of ingestion can all be customized for your own unique body.
Should you have any question, please let our team know or check out our Dosage Guideline!