Exploring the Smoke: The Unconventional Path of Consuming Mushrooms

Exploring the Smoke: The Unconventional Path of Consuming Mushrooms

Magic mushrooms, also called shrooms, have long been associated with their potent psychedelic effects, primarily due to the primary psychoactive compound, psilocybin. Traditionally consumed orally, either raw, dried, or brewed into a tea, these mushrooms have a rich history of use in spiritual and therapeutic contexts. However, the modern era of experimentation has seen a curious trend emerge: smoking mushrooms. This method raises numerous questions about efficacy, safety, and overall experience, including the duration and intensity of a mushroom trip when smoked.

Can You Smoke Mushrooms?

The intriguing question of whether mushrooms can be smoked is met with a nuanced answer: while it is physically possible, the advisability and efficacy of this method are debatable. Typically, this involves either incorporating dried mushrooms into a mix with tobacco or cannabis or smoking them on their own. Despite the physical possibility of smoking mushrooms, both expert opinions and anecdotal accounts converge on a critical consensus: smoking mushrooms is neither the most efficient nor the safest approach to consuming these psychedelic fungi.

This conclusion is grounded in a multifaceted understanding of how magic mushrooms impart their effects, and the potential risks and downsides that smoking them might entail. As we delve deeper into this subject, it becomes clear that while innovation in consumption methods can be intriguing, it also necessitates a careful consideration of the implications on both efficacy and safety.

How Long Does a Mushroom Trip Last?

The duration of a magic mushroom trip can vary widely depending on several factors, including the dose, individual physiology, the specific mushroom species, and the method of consumption. However, there is a general timeframe that most experiences fall into.

For most individuals, when magic mushrooms are consumed orally—either raw, dried, in a food preparation, or as a tea—the psychedelic effects typically begin within 20 to 40 minutes. The peak of the experience, where the effects are most intense, usually occurs around 2 to 3 hours after ingestion. The overall experience gradually tapers off, with the total duration of a trip lasting approximately 4 to 6 hours.

It's worth noting that these timelines can be influenced by various factors:

- Dosage: Higher doses can not only intensify the effects but may also prolong the experience.

- Individual Metabolism: People's bodies process substances differently, which can affect both the onset and duration of the trip.

- Mushroom Species: Different species of psychedelic mushrooms contain varying levels of psilocybin and psilocin, the compounds responsible for the psychedelic effects. For example, Psilocybe azurescens is known to be more potent than the more common Psilocybe cubensis.

- Method of Consumption: The way mushrooms are consumed can affect how quickly and effectively the body absorbs psilocybin. For instance, making a tea or using the "lemon tek" method (soaking the mushrooms in lemon juice before consumption) can lead to a faster onset of effects.

- Set and Setting: The environment and the individual's mindset can influence not only the quality of the trip but also the perception of time, which might make the experience feel longer or shorter.

It's important to approach the use of magic mushrooms with caution and respect for their potent effects. Ensure you're in a safe environment and consider having a sober, experienced sitter with you, especially if it's your first time or you're experimenting with a higher dose.

Effects of Smoking Shrooms

Dried Mushrooms In Hands For Smoking

The psychoactive effects of magic mushrooms primarily stem from psilocybin, which, when ingested orally, is converted to psilocin in the body, interacting with serotonin receptors and leading to altered perception. Smoking mushrooms might offer a quicker onset of effects due to direct absorption into the bloodstream through the lungs, but the heat from smoking can degrade psilocybin and other active compounds, potentially reducing the potency and altering the experience.

The duration of a typical mushroom trip ranges from 4 to 6 hours when ingested, but there is limited data on how long the effects last when smoked, with some reports suggesting a shorter and less intense experience.

Risks Involved in Smoking Mushrooms

The risks associated with smoking mushrooms extend beyond the potential for a less predictable psychedelic experience. These include general smoking risks such as lung irritation and the specific danger of inhaling mold spores. Additionally, the combustion of plant material can produce harmful by-products, irrespective of the psychoactive properties of the plant.

Cultivating your own magic mushrooms can mitigate some risks associated with their consumption, particularly when it comes to smoking them. By growing mushrooms yourself, you can ensure the quality and avoid the dangers of contaminants like mold spores, which are hazardous to inhale and can be present in poorly stored or low-quality dried mushrooms. Proper cultivation and storage practices can significantly reduce the risk of such contaminants.

However, it's important to understand that the act of smoking mushrooms itself carries inherent risks. The combustion of any organic material, including mushrooms, can irritate the lungs and produce harmful by-products. This is apart from the fact that the heat from combustion can degrade psilocybin, the active compound in magic mushrooms, potentially altering the intensity and nature of the psychedelic experience.

When it comes to consuming magic mushrooms, regardless of the method, there is always the potential for adverse effects. These can range from psychological distress during a "bad trip" to physical symptoms like nausea or increased blood pressure. The immediate onset and potentially unpredictable nature of effects when smoked might compound these risks.

For harm reduction, if one chooses to use magic mushrooms, it's advisable to start with low doses and ensure you're in a safe and comfortable environment. Having a sober sitter present can provide additional safety, offering support if the experience becomes challenging. It's crucial to approach the use of psychedelics with caution and respect for the powerful experiences they can induce.


Exploring the unconventional method of smoking magic mushrooms presents a blend of curiosity and caution. While physically possible, smoking mushrooms is not recommended due to the potential risks involved. If your curiosity leads you to try smoking shrooms, prioritize safety: make sure you're in a safe and controlled setting with high-quality mushrooms, begin with small doses, and think about having a sober companion to guide you through this unconventional method of consumption.

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