Yopo Snuff – My First Encounter

Yopo snuff - article header image


I’ve recently had the opportunity to try Yopo snuff. It happened during my Psilohuasca retreat, the full account of which you can read here.

I have done a little research on Yopo. Yopo snuff is made from seeds of the Yopo tree (Anadenanthera peregrina) which is endemic to the Caribbean and South America. The main psychoactive components are DMT (N,N-dimethyltryptamine) and 5-methoxy-DMT. These are also found in other visionary plants including magic mushrooms.

The most common method of application is by insufflation i.e. a thin bamboo tube is used to blow a pinch of Yopo snuff into both nostrils.

Because this method requires inhaling of Yopo powder it allows the DMT to pass directly into the bloodstream which usually creates a stronger effect than when smoked.

The Ceremony

There was no formal ceremony set-up. The whole procedure took place on a blanket in the backyard of the house where the Psilohuasca ceremony was held.

Once the snuff was blown in I started to feel some burning in my nose and a bitter taste in my throat. I closed my eyes and held my breath in for a while. My eyes welled up with tears. I wiped the tears off and lay down. The Yopo journey began.

The effect came quickly. In less than 5 min I started to feel heaviness in my head and my entire body felt uneasy. I was feeling sick and nauseous and the sickness seemed to only increase in intensity.

My journey was accompanied with some drumming which must have put me in a trance-like state. Geometric patterns appeared before me. These weren’t the kind of patterns that a normal psychedelic experience is capable of creating since all colour was withdrawn from them and they looked rather dull.

My sickness culminated in throwing up. I jumped up and let the vomit out. Fortunately, a bucket was set up ready for me.

After I lay back the sickness started to gradually disappear and my visions changed too.

Yopo snuff - imageNow I was perceiving a tunnel made of silhouette hands and right in the center of this tunnel there was a silhouette of a person waving their hands in front of me. I was not able to see who this person was because their face and body were blurred out. All I could see was the circular movements of their hands.

The duration of my trip was 20 to 25 minutes and it felt relatively intense, especially at the beginning.


While I still have to decipher what the images with desaturated colour meant, in my opinion, Yopo definitely deserves attention therefore can be placed in line with other potent ethnobotanical healing technologies. Yopo got me interested and I will be trying it out again at the first opportunity.

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  1. Bailey James says:

    T’was that whom of which waiving to you your masculine or feminine counterpart, drawing you forth for life balance, a fresh demeanor and union with your true love?!.
    Thx again

    • Visionary Universe says:

      Interesting what you said. Some trips leave more questions than answers. For example, one trip still lives with me as if it was one hour ago. It’s only by facing every day situations that I’m able to answer some questions that that trip raised in me. It was my trip with DMT btw…

  2. Interesting to read about your experiences with shamanic power plants.
    I find my own experiences with these plants to be like opened doors to these other dimensions where i can go in my meditations.For me it is enough to visualize these mushrooms,and i get a slight buzz starting up.
    Thank you for sharing.

    • Visionary Universe says:

      Meditation is another method to reach higher dimensions. However, for me personally, visionary plants are the way to go to encounter those higher planes of existence.

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