Idiot's Guide to CHT hackbase

< RFC++ >

(Most applies to 🔗hackbase-type2 bases)

Hello idiot. Here is a guide about the very basics of life at a CHT Nomadic Hackbase, from one idiot to another. It's intended to be as concise as possible, covering only the most important practical considerations about living at camp.

To Know

CHT is a live-in hacklab, acting as a research project for post-capitalist lifestyle infrastructure typologies. In short, it is not a holiday camp. You will be expected to contribute to this research in whichever ways you can. The first thing you can do after reading this guide is to read the website. A number of people have spent a considerable amount of time compiling it, and almost any question you have, or aspect you'd like to learn about, has been comprehensively handled somewhere on the website. This guide is not a shortcut, it's just a nod in the right direction, and written in a style which hopefully even the most hardened idiot can follow. At the end of the guide will be a list of links to parts of the website which are relevant to each of the following sections.

Before You Travel

Essential Packing – Sleeping Bag, Suitable Clothing and Footwear, Head light  
In the winter months, night-time temperatures can drop to around 8°C in the hills. Rain also exists, albeit rare. Though in general the winter weather is pleasant throughout (14-20°C), do be prepared for the 'extremes'. There is a limited amount of tent space and sleeping mats, for about 10 people, but this can expand easily if necessary. The space has some extra windstoppers jackets (M/L sizes). Check availability beforehand. Hills are rocky. Night-time is dark.

Install mobile apps:
    OsmAnd, Telegram
The CHT group on Telegram is an invaluable for communication. OsmAnd (Open Street Maps) will allow you to both easily locate the camp and explore the surrounding area.

CHT is always looking to expand its collection of useful things, and often useful things are cheaper to buy where you are flying from (eg. mainland Europe) than on Lanzarote. This means you should check with somebody before you fly whether you can be useful and bring something. The cost of any purchase can be offset from your daily contributions. A comprehensive list is linked below.


Change your devices to local time.

Nomadic as it is at the moment, CHT's hackbase location isn't fixed. You will invariably find a near-precise location on the current subseason page (found at More details will usually be communicated with you on the days of your arrival.
but is mostly based in the North of Lanzarote (close to the towns of Arrieta and Haria), or closer to the Timanfaya national park (village of Mancha Blanca). Anyway, make sure to receive the GPS coordinates before you arrive. From the capital Arrecife, take lines 7 (to Haria or Arrieta) or 9 (to Arrieta). Exact timetables and stops can be found below. Last bus from Arrecife at 20:30. Cost €3.40. Alternatively, hitch-hike.

At Camp

Ok, you made it. You aren't as stupid as you look. Next, here are the most essential things to be aware of about living at camp.

    General Expectations and Responsibilities
Why are you here? Chilling in the sun? Probably not the best place for you. There are specific, ongoing projects at CHT. Some are technical, some are practical, some are theoretical/tactical. Some are daily tasks necessary for the smooth running of the camp (eg. cooking, supply runs), some are developmental in nature (installing hardware, improving infrastructure). People are expected to donate some part of each day to the ongoing development of CHT. This doesn't mean you can't enjoy a bit of sun, or fuck around doing nothing, or be a tourist, but just not all day, every day. You can check with other members which 🔗projects are active to join or start your own, but do something. Action is a key principle, as is sticking to your word. Each 'Sub-season' has its own page, and it is here that you can find a list of new and ongoing projects to join in with. Links below.  

You will be expected to respect the nature in which you are living and leave no trace. Every bit of waste should be collected, stored, and carried back down the hill.

    Typical Facilities
Every subseason is different. But, a general nomadic camp will comprise of a collection of tents, tarps, storage boxes, and equipment. Tents will mostly be for sleeping, but one tent will be designated 'The Lab', which will provide a storage and working area. In general one area will be singled out as a cooking area (fire). A basic shower will also be set up. You will pee and poo in the nature, away from camp, and a shovel will be provided in helping with the latter. There are a number of smaller & portable Solar Arrays, ~50W and providing ~200Wh each in a day. That's about 2-3 fully charged laptops, 5-6 phones and some music and lighting per day. This is sufficient, but also requires, especially with a larger group, that people use their energy carefully (eg. lower screen-brightness, turn off Wifi & Bluetooth if not in use, etc.).

In its current format, CHT requires some level of financial contribution from everybody who visits.
Living Costs – Food, Water, Travel to supermarket
Maintenance  Costs – The use, upkeep and replacement of breakable existing equipment eg. Tents & Batteries
Investment Costs – Extra contributions for the development of CHT infrastructure
You will be required to contribute a minimum of €10/day. Don't be under any other illusion, unless you have specifically discussed and fixed paying less with CHT. This covers your Living and Maintenance costs only. An investment contribution will be expected if you are in a position to give it. This is typically set at €4/day, though can be increased or decreased depending on your means. If you don't like the maths and think you could improve it, speak up immediately - maybe you can add to to the years of CHT experience? A comprehensive breakdown is linked below.

In general shopping is done on large scale supply missions to Arrecife due to the significant price difference between the supermarket in the capital and the local shops. Members at camp will be expected to participate. Generally, shopping is not done individually on a daily basis, with the exception of water, fresh bread and -some- fresh fruit. Water is one of the most important resources at camp, and as such, it is expected that every time a member leaves camp to a place with a shop, they return with 5 litres. Bread and fresh produce should be discussed separately. Food bought communally from Living contributions will go towards generally good value and healthy food. This will include food from a range of food groups. Detailed info is linked below. Of course, individuals are free to do their own personal shopping for things they intend to consume privately or share with the group, for example, alcohol or sweets, but these items will be paid for separately by the individual, having no part in the budget.

The transient nature of the camp will entail that there will always be a different mix of personalities. Sometimes this will be great, other times it will cause problems, especially with people living in such close proximity to each other. This might be further confounded by different people having different sleeping patterns/preferred working times, especially if one person is relying on another for some project work. Be aware of this and attempt to communicate. If you have a problem with something, say it. Don't just bottle it up. Maybe you will learn something, or get something done, or maybe you will realise someone is a dick, or that there is no way you can get along together, but at least you tried.

Leaving Camp
Make sure you have paid your contributions and have transferred all the digital stuff (photos, text, etc.). Say bye bye.


Alright idiot, we made it, and survived. Wasn't that fun? Or at least a bit interesting? Now go read the website. It will be worth the effort, and turn you into less of an idiot.

But, you may ask . . . 

    * When is the next camp?
    * What is it all about? and 🔗commonground
    * What else to pack? 🔗newcomers
    * What's the climate/weather like? 🔗lanzarote
    * Buses and Hitching? 🔗manual and local pages, like 🔗lanzarote and 🔗fuerteventura
    * Equipment at camp in detail? 🔗stuff
    * Why does it cost that much per day? 🔗subfinance
    * What do we eat? 🔗food
    * Who cooks? 🔗roles
    * What do I do at camp? 🔗projects, 🔗roles
    * Who does other stuff? What is there to be done? 🔗roles
    * What things should I bring from the mainland? 🔗ordering, 🔗stuff, 🔗resources-ship
    * I have a lot more ques.... 🔗faq and

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