Citation: specialkguy. "To the Nth Dimension and Back: An Experience with Ketamine (exp115244)". Erowid.org. Mar 31, 2021. erowid.org/exp/115244
To the Nth Dimension and Back on IV Ket
As I have quite extensive experience with this route of ingestion, and have found it very pleasurable, I thought I would share my experiences here. I and a couple of friends used IV ketamine around 15+ times in the space of a year, taking high doses to induce an immediate and powerful loss of self and visual trip, with subsequent moderate euphoria and sense of intimacy, warmth and pride.
Drug used: During the period that I and a couple of friends were using K in this way, we had access to sealed, medical-grade bottles of liquid K direct from a hospital. We would open these and inject directly (on occasion we also cooked some down into crystal K and snorted it).
Route of ingestion: we would usually take the K as an IV injection, which resulted in a very fast and intense onset (within 1-5 minutes) and half an hour to an hour of black-out as described below. Sometimes we would start off with an intramuscular (I'm) injection, which would result in similar experiences to those described below but a little less intense and slower to take effect.
Set: We were working in quite intense circumstances in a Middle Eastern country, meaning we were under a lot of stress and looking for ways to relax in a culture where it was difficult to drink, let alone access recreational drugs. We started using K in this way during quite a hedonistic period, when we were working hard all day and looking for any way we could to ‘let our hair down’ at night. We had to be careful as if our superiors or workmates had realised we were using recreational drugs we would have been in a lot of trouble, and we lived together in close quarters with these workmates. On the other hand we had a good small group of friends who all trusted one another a lot. The ‘taboo’ nature of what we were doing made the experience more enjoyable for me, sneaking around at night with a fast pulse, pretending to go to bed then getting back up, etc as we got ourselves set up for the trip to come.
I had previously used K nasally on occasion (c. 10 times) as a party drug, but never injected it before. My only previous IV experience was using crystal meth IV at a sex party. In terms of other hallucinogenics, I had used acid and 2C-B a few times each. I had very frequently used MDMA and cocaine (2-3 times weekly for several years), drank almost daily, and semi-regularly used crystal meth, GHB, speed, mephedrone, etc.
However, at the time of these experiences, due to the fact we were in the Middle East, I was drinking once a week or less and, less frequently still, using the slightly paltry selection of drugs mentioned below under combos.
Setting: there is a very fast onset, so we mostly tried to have a safe, secure setting with no possibility of being disturbed or inducing paranoia. We found ‘setting’ to be less important than it would be with some other hallucinogens, as despite the intense visuals and altered perception then the K pretty immediately took away our ability to perceive our surroundings which then slowly returned as the immediate effects wore off.
We found it was most important to have a mattress/pillows/duvet etc set up, allowing us to relax into a prone position as the K took effect. Due to the fast onset, we took care to have everything we might want in the hours ahead (music/water/cigarettes etc.) to hand as once the K has been injected there is not really any time to get up and fetch things. Also very important was having good music playing, as this ‘filtered through’ into the trip/k-hole much more than our physical surroundings would, and one song would seem to last for hours. Of course having a pleasant physical surrounding also helped to ensure a pleasant trip, and we would often use the K in a locked courtyard on a mattress below the stars. Once we were stuck outside having shot the K up when a rainstorm started, and this diminished our pleasure in the trip to some extent.
Dose: We would typically split a 250ml bottle between two people, so 125ml/person or around 2mg/kg, taken in one initial hit. This was perhaps ‘overkill’ but would reliably produce the black-out/k-hole experience described below within minutes. On occasion we would redose another 60-125ml once or twice at around t+2 to 3 hours as the effects wore off and ‘normal’ visuals and sense of self slowly returned, which would effectively repeat the same experience though more intensely again.
Conversely then on some occasions we would start off with a smaller dose (c.60ml/person), redosing at around this level, and/or start off with an IM injection. This would not result in a total blackout though we would still be pretty much incapable of standing/moving around.
On one occasion we mistakenly took 250ml/person in one go, and suffered no particular ill effects, though the trip was even heavier than normal and the aftermath somewhat groggier.
What follows is a description of a ‘typical’ trip, amalgamating a number of experiences which were pretty indistinguishable from one another, though with timings varying slightly depending on dosage etc.
T: 00:00 I and my friend each inject 125ml of ketamine intravaneously, taking care to allow the belt/tourniquet we have used to fall away.
T : 00.01-5 There is an almost immediate change in physical perceptions, as soft lines solidify and become geometric. Music and sounds are altered. I feel myself ‘freezing’ in place, and a warm sensation of ‘going under’ into another dimension rapidly onsets. This often feels like dropping out of the dimensions of the present world into a sort of ‘underworld’ in which everything has multiple forms, like if you looked at a tree and saw it in several dimensions or superpositions, all the trees it had been and was going to be. The song playing slows, warps and distorts.
(Sometimes the onset would all take place within a minute, but normally I would have enough time to smoke a cigarette before I started to be overwhelmed. In these opening minutes I would sometimes feel a certain degree of paranoia, worry I had screwed up the injection, etc., though I normally experience mild paranoia like this at the beginning of taking any drug.)
T : 00.05-30 Initially a total or almost total loss of self and awareness, with no perception of my own body or physical surroundings. Intense confusion and loss of selfhood and inviduality. Racing through the ‘underworld’ as though on a rollercoaster, through fractal dimensions. Powerful, complex Sense of flowing into surroundings and interconnectivity with the universe, time, etc. Hard to believe afterward that we’d only been there for half an hour or so. The same song or two echo through the trip, seeming to last for an age. There are overwhelming kinaesthetic effects, with self/surroundings/music/emotions all bafflingly warp into one another. As time goes on these effects begin to pulse in and out.
Emotionally these period was often overwhelming, normally quite euphoric, particularly if redosing. Sometimes there were unpleasant spells, a sense of darkness and emptiness behind me or swallowing me, as though I was being challenged to fall into this darkness. If I was able to fall back into it, I would feel ‘rewarded’, in the typical psychedic fashion of overcoming oneself/one’s ego. These ‘difficult’ periods were never enough to dominate the trip and the experience was ‘fine and interesting enough if a little repetitive’ through to ‘mindblowing’ on each occasion that I repeated.
Insofar as a perception of time remains, everything takes a very long time, and it would be very hard to believe, afterward, that we had only been lying there for half an hour.
T : 00.30-01.30 gradual emergence from this most intense phase, though these effects would sometimes return and go away again, pulsing in and out (in a strange way, like I could look to the left and feel almost normal and see everything pretty clearly then look to the right and be back on the rollercoaster racing through the underbelly of the world.) gradual return of sense of self. I would normally gradually piece together who I was, my name, where I was, my job, etc., and feel proud with each bit of information that I got back – the experience being less about the ego death than piecing the ego back together again afterwards. I would feel pleasant or euphoric, recalling who I was, feeling good about where I was, my friend, etc. Figures from our life at the time would somehow appear or be recalled to have appeared in the trip – there would be strong pleasant or unpleasant associations with a particular person, event or time etc., which we would then unpick. It slowly became possible to speak, though each word would initially come with some difficulty, as though underwater.
In general it was very difficult to do anything physically, roll a cigarette, change a song, prepare a second dose, etc., though as with other hallucinogenics this could be achieved with a degree of focus. It would initially be impossible to stand, though toward the end of this period I could get up and stagger away for a piss. Sometimes I would vomit around this point. Physically everything remains very ‘scattered’ and diffuse, things multiply and become fractal. During this period we would sometimes make out or have oral sex, though with quite a degree of difficulty/confusion – going down on my friend only to be lost among a baffling phalanx of limbs and genitalia. We would more often just embrace, and feel ourselves flowing in and out of one another. We would feel a warm sense of intimacy.
T: 1.30-4.00 our ability to speak, sense of self, etc. Would slowly return. We felt groggy, stupid, stoned, would struggle to describe to one another what we were saying in broken sentences that slowly made more sense, get lost telling simple anecdotes, etc. Visuals slowly returned to normal. We continued to enjoy listening to music, looking at the trees and sky. After good trips I would feel a sense of achievement/pride in myself for having ‘gone through’ the intense experience. During this period it became more simple to roll cigarettes, get up and walk away a bit for a piss, etc., though it still wouldn’t be possible to dance, for example. We would grow increasingly chatty, and enjoy holding one another and talking.
As noted above, sometimes we would redose at this point, particularly if we’d started off on a lower dose
sometimes we would redose at this point, particularly if we’d started off on a lower dose
. Normally though we would talk and listen to music until we got tired. Around t+4.00 to t+5.00 we would go off to bed if we had work the next day, managing to walk with a little difficulty, and still experiencing mild visuals. I would normally sleep without too much difficulty, if a little broken/restless.
Aftermath: one of the best things about using K in this way (as with snorting K) is that it has a very short half-life and pleasant afterglow, possibly with even some mild anti-depressant effects. We would regularly use in this way around midnight, go to bed around 4AM, and wake up for work at 8AM without too much difficulty. The next day we sometimes felt a little woozy/out of it, sometimes extra switched-on and able to work creatively and engage in conversations etc. with greater interest than normal.
Combinations: the effect of the K is powerful enough that it cut through most other substances we might have taken at the time – on various occasions this included alcohol, IV codeine, the muscle relaxant soma, and various benzodiazepenes. Being on any of these substances potentiated the experience to some extent, particularly in the sense of increasing confusion/disorientation/loss of self. Taking a dissasociative while also on substances like the benzos is probably inadvisable, but again we suffered no real ill effects from this.
Overall: I found using IV K to be always interesting, almost always quite or very pleasant, often euphoric and somtimes challenging way to spend an evening with a friend. The best euphoric effects were perhaps achieved when taking smaller doses (c.60ml/person) but redosing once or twice. There were sometimes ‘tough’ spells to the trip, but this contributed to the overall experience. It was often a very intimate bonding experience to go through with a friend/friends/lover.
If you are lucky enough to have access to medical-grade liquid K, I would suggest starting off with an IM injection to get a feel for this ROI before moving on to IV injection later that night or on another occasion. It would probably be advisable to have a trip sitter or take it in turns to inject (which wouldn’t be so annoying as the ‘blackout’ phase is only around half an hour or so). However we normally all shot up at the same time without any problems. The experience normally felt very ‘clean’ and our ability to use like this on a work night, go into the nth dimension, come back and be up and feeling good for breakfast at 8AM was always a source of amazement to us.
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