Being able to start a campfire is an important skill to have. Whether you are a serious hiker or enjoy the occasional camping trip, being able to start a campfire is something everyone should be able to do.
Materials for a Campfire
In order to build a campfire, you will need three main things: tinder, kindling, and wood logs. Tinder consists of small materials that ignite easily such as dry grass or shredded tree bark. Kindling are medium sized materials that will catch fire quickly such as small twigs or dry leaves. Wooden logs are large and will keep the fire going once it has caught flame from the kindling. Other things that will ignite easily are insect repellents, greasy snack foods, and dryer lint.
Building the Campfire
If you are hiking, it is important to understand if you are allowed to build a campfire or if they have designated spots in order to do so. Most trails will have set regulations. In the event of an emergency, such as being stranded or lost, you would build a fire regardless. Make sure you put a circle of rocks around the base of the fire to prevent it from spreading. Wind can easily distinguish a fire. Make sure you are setting your fire 3 to 6 inches inside the ground to prevent the wind from blowing it out.
Types of Campfires
There are two different go-to methods when it comes to building a campfire, the teepee method and the log cabin method. The tepee method is where you lean logs onto the kindling so they come to a point, as a teepee would. Leave an opening in the teepee so you can light the tinder from the bottom of it. The log cabin method is where you stack your logs in an alternating pattern around the center teepee that is protecting the kindling. The space between the logs will let air circulate throughout the fire. Both methods are a good way to ensure the fire will start.
Putting Out the Campfire
Knowing how to put out a campfire is important as well. Even small campfires can easily destroy a forest, especially when weather has been particularly dry or the fire is not completely put out. Never assume the fire will put itself out. Wind can easily reignite previous fires, even if just ashes are still burning. When you start a fire, make sure you have water or dirt to throw on top in the event that it starts to spread. Ideally, you should be soaking the campfire in order to ensure that it is cooled and no longer can burn.
These hints should help you understand how to start a campfire, as well as properly put one out. For more news on hunting, camping, fishing, and all things outdoor, visit Lawrence Bay Lodge’s blog.