It’s not easy to explain the exhilaration of skydiving, unless perhaps you’ve done it. Free falling from the roof of an open sky is a hard feeling to pinpoint, but surely you can’t help but wonder what it feels like.
I’m sure you’ve heard a mushroom trip story from someone at least once in your life. From watching stars dance in a vibrant lunar disco to witnessing house cats grow angel wings, the possibilities are truly endless when it comes to psychedelic telltales.
All this to say, there are understandable bounds of curiosity when it comes to the colorful, mystical fungus that holds this world in a state of peculiar optimism… Single-handedly confirming that magic could be conveniently activated by human ingestion.
There are little to no definitive words that can outright put you in the unique state that a mushroom trip can, but from what we do know, we can break down the most common trip stages into key parts.
Part One: Onset (20 Minutes to 1< Hour Mark)
The onset stage is when a person can begin to feel the effects of mushrooms in mild to moderate sensations. Things such as enhanced sensitivity to light, attention to detail, and/or feeling easily entertained are some examples of what can be experienced.
Nausea tends to be most common in this timeframe, though it does not affect everyone the same. You can try to avoid onset nausea by staying hydrated, and by not consuming mushrooms on an empty stomach, nor an overly full one.
Nausea/feelings of anxiousness in the onset stage can also be attributed to high levels of anticipation, especially if it is a first time experience. Allowing the time to pass like it normally would by engaging in an activity like drawing or dancing can take the pressure off. It helps to not pay too much mind to the “Am I getting high yet?” thoughts.
Part Two: Come Up / Body High (1 Hour Mark)
“Coming up” is where the mushrooms will slowly begin to work their magic. In this stage colors may begin to fluctuate in brightness/saturation and appear more defined, and sounds may become more prominent as you begin to experience mild entheogenic effects.
One defining attribute of the come up stage is the body high that comes with it. Imagine that the trip starts in the body before meeting the mind, which for many individuals is a very euphoric, fuzzy, enjoyable feeling.
With that said, some people will experience body highs differently. “Body load” is a term used to describe a feeling of physical weight enhanced by the come up stage, which for some can feel less pleasant. Although the feeling of a heavy body high can be uncomfortable for some, the sensation is rather temporary and should lighten within an hour or so. Deep breathing techniques and calming music can help lighten the load and make these sensations easier to digest if needed.
Part Three: Psychedelic Phase (Around 2 Hour Mark)
May the colors begin! The psychedelic phase is when you can start to embrace some of the more commonly noted aspects of psychedelics such as visuals, auditory shifts, changes in depth perception, etc.
Many can begin to notice a pulsing type movement in their surroundings at the start of this stage, where it almost appears that the carpet or sky is breathing. Hallucinations will likely begin in this stage, with a prominent variance in color and movement. You may also feel a need to indulge in some irresistible laughter, just because.
Part Four: The Peak (2 Hour to 3 Hour Mark)
“Peaking” is a term used to reference being at the highest point of a trip, as hallucinations will be the most prominent in this stage. Things like exaggerated colors, surrounding movement, and spiritual inclinations may begin to show forth when peaking. Sound fluctuations or distortions may also become more prominent in this stage.
Experiencing ego-dissolution is most likely to take place while peaking, which is a common effect attributed to spiritual revelations and other personal epiphanies relating to psychedelic use.
The peak stage for some can also be very light-hearted, playful and fun! Centered around feelings of joy and a zest for life type energy.
Peak time varies from person to person, but is most common in the second or third hour of a trip.
Part Five: Come Down (5 to 6 Hour Mark)
“Coming down” is the gradual act of mushrooms wearing off. At this point, effects will wear off and become less noticeable.
During the come down process there is often a sense of mental exhaustion due to several hours of stimulation, but is often accompanied by a state of peace and overall ease – A.K.A. best sleep ever.
Coming down takes place at the end of a trip, normally around hour 5 to 6.
Part Six: Afterglow (Following Day)
Unlike an alcohol hangover, the morning after tripping can be accompanied by a euphoric, glow type feeling as the effects linger and even after the mushrooms have completely worn off.
Mushroom’s ability to leave you feeling refreshed and enlightened after they have left your system is a particular feeling that separates them from other substances.
This afterglow stage can really showcase the impact magic mushrooms have on our mental space. It is a great time to start writing things down or, if you journalled during your trip, to continue your journal entries. This stage can leave individuals feeling insightful and reflective, which can last anywhere from a couple hours after a trip, to several days after the fact.
How someone will react to a mushroom trip can rely on many different factors, such as: mental health, dosage, lifestyle, age, mindset, surroundings, and more. Due to these factors, it is necessary to take into account that there are precautions that should be acknowledged in order to best prioritize a positive trip experience.
If you are preparing for your first trip, it’s good to retain the mindset that not only do we react to mushrooms, but mushrooms may react to us as well. Meaning although mushrooms can be incredibly impactful in guiding us through certain obstacles, it is good to assess your current mental state before going into it.
When we are in a state of excessive stress or anxiety, it becomes more challenging to fully submerge in the trip, which at times may result in adverse effects. The more at ease we become prior to a trip, the more susceptible we are to positive psychedelic experiences. For some, microdosing smaller amounts of mushrooms in a structured manner instead can help ease stress levels while also allowing the body to grow some comradery with the mushrooms.
A mushroom trip can be incredibly enjoyable, and bring a whole lot of treasure from the lessons they bring when proper precautions are taken.
At the end of it all, you don’t need to jump from a plane to know how the sky feels. You also don’t need to consume a bunch of mushrooms to gain spiritual enlightenment, which is why you should always move at your own comfortable pace. If you ever want to take the plunge though, we are always here to make sure you land safely.