How Long Does A Magic Mushroom Trip Last?

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How Long Does A Magic Mushroom Trip Last?

MushMagic takes a look at how long a magic mushroom trip lasts and what factors influence the experience. Make the most of your tripping experience with the knowledge from this handy guide!

HOW LONG DOES A MUSHROOM TRIP LAST?

How long does a mushroom trip last? Well. How long is a piece of string? There are a number of factors that influence the length and intensity of a mushroom trip.

SPECIES

The amount of psilocybin varies from species to species, with some being mild and others being very strong, and everything in between.

DOSAGE

Because strengths vary from species to species and quantities are different depending on body weight, doses vary to induce the same level of effects. 5 grams of one species may have the same effect as 1 gram of another. It is truly important to know the strength—or psilocybin content—of the mushrooms you plan to take. Commercially produced shroom kits purchased through a reputable purveyor of fine fungus should come with a recommended dosage. Wild shrooms on the other hand are a bit of a grab bag, and it is advised to start slow and work your way up from there.

FRESH VS DRIED AND AGED

Fresh mushrooms are not as powerful as dried mushrooms, simply because the psilocybin percentage in dried shrooms is higher. Also, strength can vary depending on how the shrooms have been dried. When slowly dried in a dehydrator, for example, they are stronger than when dried on a window sill, or with a hair dryer.

HOW ARE THEY TAKEN?

Mushrooms are ingested in a number of ways; traditionally, they are eaten whole. They may also be crushed into a powder and sprinkled on food, put into capsules, or brewed into a tea. Techies may also extract the pure psilocybin and dispose of the organic material entirely.

WHY DO SHROOMS MAKE YOU TRIP?

Magic mushrooms contain the compound psilocybin. Although not completely understood, it is known that psilocybin, when converted in the body to psilocin, affects the serotonin system of the brain. It also affects the serotonin system in the gut, which is why trips are accompanied by some nausea. But it is the effects on the brain that are the main reason for using magic mushrooms.

Psilocybin also interrupts and modifies connectivity in the brain. The altered connectivity is what the user experiences as a trip, and this varies depending on the amount taken. The modifications to the brain can be experienced as a pleasant feeling of wellbeing and positivity when small doses are taken, to a full-blown otherworldly, extracorporeal, existential flight of hyper reality when large doses are taken.

Back to the future

WHEN DOES IT START?

Mushrooms need to be digested before the effects begin. They are absorbed through the stomach and intestines, then the psilocybin is converted by the body (metabolised in the liver) into psilocin. Then the fun begins.

The initial effects of mushrooms will be felt within 20–40 minutes after consuming them. They announce themselves with gentle waves of euphoria, tracing of movement, and subtle changes in senses and perceptions. Some factors, like if you have eaten beforehand, can delay the onset, but things will certainly be underway within 2 hours.

JUST HOW LONG IS THAT PIECE OF STRING?

The main factors that influence the length and intensity of a trip are species and the quantity taken. As a general rule of thumb, a trip lasts for 3–8 hours and is usually well and truly over after 10–12. Some direct after effects may be felt for the next 24 hours, followed by a general feeling of happiness and wellbeing for a number of weeks.

The strength of a mushroom, therefore the amount of psilocybin consumed, is more related to the intensity of the trip than the length. A large dose of a powerful strain will bring on a more intense experience over the same general time frame. Effects increase in intensity as the hours pass and are at their peak at the 3–4 hour mark. From then on, things begin to mellow until equilibrium is reached again.

Then there is microdosing, where a small amount of between 0.1–0.5 grams is taken once every 3–4 days. With such low doses, a full trip is never experienced. This practice is becoming very popular, and there are many reports on the benefits of microdosing such as increased creativity, a sense of wellbeing, and connectedness with the self and others.

Here is a general guide using dried Psilocybe cubensis mushrooms as a base:

  • 0.1–0.5g dried mushrooms ≙ ~0.6–3.0mg psilocybin = microdose
  • 1.0g dried mushrooms ≙ ~6.0mg psilocybin = 6 hours; very mild
  • 1.5g dried mushrooms ≙ ~9.0mg psilocybin = 7 hours; mild
  • 3.0g dried mushrooms ≙ ~18.0mg psilocybin = 7.5 hours; medium intensity
  • 5.0g dried mushrooms ≙ ~30.0mg psilocybin = 8 hours; strong intensity

Truffle trip

WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF SHROOMS?

Again, that depends on the strength of the shroom and the quantity taken. At one end of the scale is microdosing. This is not really considered tripping, but rather seen as mood and creativity enhancement.

Beginning with a mild dose, here are some common features of tripping:

  • Clammy skin and sweating
  • Mild nausea
  • Visual changes where colours are more intense and seem to glow; surfaces appear to move and distort; general surroundings appear more acute and defined
  • Malfunction of short-term memory characterised by loss of train of thought and easy distraction
  • Distorted sound
  • Enhanced creativity
  • Euphoria, relaxation, and general elation
  • Uncontrollable giggling

With a larger dose, the same features will be experienced, but at the peak of the trip, things will be magnified and may include:

  • Time dilation or total disconnection from time
  • More profound visual distortions; objects may appear warped or curved; plain surfaces may appear to flow and swirl like fluid or appear kaleidoscopic
  • Hearing colours and seeing sounds or “synesthesia”
  • Disconnection from reality—either mild or severe
  • Loss of ego, where the boundary between observer and observed dissolves
  • Out-of-body experiences and connection with the Logos
  • Full-blown hallucinations; objects may speak; disconnection from the “real” world may occur

Depending on the individual and their experience, these things can be welcomed as enlightening and part of the trip. But they could also induce feelings of paranoia, fear, panic, and anxiety, and be the grounds for a “bad” trip.

Timewarp

A GENERAL NOTE ON PSYCHEDELICS

Naturally occurring substances like magic mushrooms, DMT in the form of ayahuasca or its analogues, mescaline, and many other natural psychedelics have been used by humans for thousands, if not tens of thousands of years. Neolithic cave paintings hint at the use of magic mushrooms by the painters, and countless aboriginal peoples have used psychedelics as sacraments. The modern era of chemistry adds LSD and MDMA to this psychedelic smorgasbord. Each in their own way can bring profound realisations about the human condition: how we relate to each other, nature, other creatures, and the universe at large.

They can also be unsafe if not respected. A sober tripping buddy is always advised in case things take a turn for the worse. Set and setting play an important role in the quality of the experience, and being in a positive frame of mind can keep bad trips at bay. People with a predisposition to schizophrenia or other mental disorders should not take psychedelics AT ALL.

The world of psychedelics is a fascinating and fun, profound, and playful place where you can learn a lot about yourself. Explore and play safely, and be sure of what you are taking.