Camping out with friends and family can be a great way to strengthen relationships. You can root yourself to the earth’s natural components by building a campfire. It can be difficult to get it lit, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are some steps on How to build a campfire and how to maintain it.
- Stick matches or lighters with a long stem
- miniature camp shovel
- A water bottle
- Starters for fire
Step 1: Place your campfire
keep your campfire at least 3 metres (10 feet) away from anything that could catch fire, such as your tent or nearby trees. Ideally, the location will be wind-sheltered, but always maintain a safe distance from the environment and other people. To avoid flaming embers from falling down the slope, find a flat area to build your bonfire.
Step 2: Make your own fire bed
Use the specified fire pits at your campground at all times. Use a pre-existing fire bed wherever possible when wild camping. Naturally, there will be times when you have to improvise. You should place your fire bed on exposed ground, not grass (especially dead grass). If you can’t find a place like this, you can remove plant and grass matter or build a little platform out of earth with the help of hatchet and miniature shovel (always check local guidelines first). Make a big bed for your fire to spread out in since dry grass, branches, and plant matter can all be dangerous.
Step 3: Set up a rock ring
Creating a ring of rocks around the fire is an excellent idea to help control it. To allow some air to still circulate at the base of the fire, use dry boulders that are roughly the size of a clenched fist and spacing them apart.
Avoid building your fire up against big rocks or other objects since it will leave ugly markings. Additionally, keep in mind that pebbles that are damp or wet may spit moisture or even fracture when they heat up.
Step 4: Gather your tinder
Any highly dry, tiny particle that burns quickly is called “tinder.” To start your fire, look for small dried twigs, dried grass or leaves, or pine needles. If you prepare ahead of time, you can even use crumpled newspaper or dryer lint from your house. In the center of your fire ring, put your tinder. Wood chips or shavings, cardboard scraps or strips, candle wax, cotton balls, or a pre-made fire starter are additional choices for tinder. Your entire supply of tinder should be very thin and small enough to fit in your cupped palms, including any twigs or sticks (around the width of pencil lead).
Tinder: Every successful campfire begins with proper tinder. Tinder for a campfire should ignite easily and burn quickly. Dry leaves, grass, bark and wood shavings are all suitable materials. You’ll carry your own tinder, such as dryer lint, char cloth or firelighters, if you’re a wise camper.
Step 5: Build a fire
Depending on your demands, there are a variety of campfire building methods. Almost all of them begin with a lean-to or tepee-style fire lay.
Tepee: Build a tepee out of the kindling wood around and above the bundle of tinder that you placed in the centre of your fire bed. Leave a tiny opening for air and lighting.
Build this up gradually with kindling, then top it off with some of your smaller fuel wood. Try to keep the thicker ends of the fuel wood and kindling toward the bottom.
Create a lean-to: by driving a long piece of kindling at an angle of around 30 degrees into the ground. This will serve as your support stick. It may also be propped up against a larger wood
Before laying kindling on the support stick’s outside, bundle tinder and a few smaller pieces of kindling beneath it. Add a second layer
Step 6: Start your fire
To get the kindling and firewood on fire, start with the tinder. Continue adding kindling to the fire once the tinder ignites it to maintain and spread the flames. When the fire is big and stable enough to kindle larger pieces of wood, add more firewood. If the tinder won’t catch, use only matches, a lighter, or a little amount of lighter fluid for safety.
Leave space around the fire so that air may circulate as you add wood. When it’s possible, only use dry kindling and firewood (it burns easier and smokes less). Never spray lighter fluid, chemicals, or anything else onto embers or an open flame. This could cause burns, unexpected flare-ups, or the fire to spread. Avoid gasoline and other accelerants (chemicals that start roaring fires) in addition to lighter fluid since they can burn dangerously out of control.
Step 7: Build a fire and add fuel to it
Once the fire is lit, it’s time to add fuel to it. Various options are available to you based on your needs. Regardless of the technique you use, build your campfire gradually and steadily, moving your fuel from the smaller branches to the bigger logs.
Step 8: Put out the fire
This is the most depressing aspect of a campfire evening, but it’s also important. Plan ahead and begin putting out your fire at least 20 minutes before you want to crawl into your sleeping bag. Ideally, you have let the campfire to go out and is now quiet.
Sprinkle some water onto the fire bed and use a stick to stir the embers and ashes. By placing your hand back close to the fire, you may check its temperature. The fire is still too hot to leave if you can’t keep your hand there. Until it is safe to leave, keep adding water and stirring.
Step 9: Remove any traces of your fire
To lessen your impact on the environment, “leave no trace” of your fire. To make the area appear as natural as possible, scatter unburned wood and replace any utilised dirt where it was discovered. Ensure that your wood or coals are fully charred and reduced to dust before dispersing them over a sizable area away from your campground.
Any waste, such as leftover food from a campfire or trash from a burn, should be picked up and disposed of in accordance with the regulations of your campsite. Prior to starting the cleanup, let the fire cool and be fully out.
For your awareness
- Always create campfires in approved fire pits and fireplaces, far from combustible vegetation like grass or trees.
- Before lighting your campfire, keep a bucket, a shovel, and a source of water close at hand.
- Never remove a tree that is alive or dead; standing dead trees frequently contain wildlife.
- A fire must always be dealt to.