Campfire Tips

  1. Gather Your Wood Like a Lumberjack:
    Start by collecting three types of wood – tinder, kindling, and fuel. Tinder is the fine stuff like dry leaves or pine straw. Kindling is small twigs and branches, while fuel is the larger logs that will keep your fire burning bright. Only use materials that are already on the ground! Never cut down trees for your fire. 
  1. The Teepee Technique:
    Arrange your tinder in the center in the shape of a teepee. As you add kindling around it, make sure to leave an opening on the side where the wind is blowing – you’re not trying to smoke out the entire forest, after all. 
  1. The Log Cabin Construction:
    For a more robust fire, build a log cabin. Place two larger pieces of fuel parallel to each other, add two more on top perpendicular to the first two, and keep alternating. Leave some space for air circulation between the logs. 
  1. The Lean-To Lean-In:
    This method is perfect for windy conditions. Drive a long piece of kindling into the ground at a slight angle, stack your tinder against it, and lean kindling and small fuel against the support. Light the tinder from the windward side, and watch the flames dance. 
  1. The Star Technique:
    If you want a fire that burns long and steady, try the star technique. Arrange your fuel logs in a star shape with the tinder in the center. As the fire progresses, push the logs toward the center to maintain the flame. 
  1. Mind Your Firestarter:
    Whether you prefer matches, a lighter, or a magnesium fire starter, make sure it’s reliable. There’s nothing worse than a damp match sabotaging your fire-starting ambitions. 
  1. Be Patient:
    Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is a perfect campfire. Take your time, be patient, and let the flames do their slow, mesmerizing dance. 
  1. Safety First, Last, and Always:
    Keep a bucket of water or sand nearby, just in case. We’re building fires, not playing with matches, so be responsible and mindful of your surroundings. Move dry leaves and kindling away from your firepit. And if you have kids with you, teach them and demonstrate good fire safety. 
  1. Always Stand Watch:
    Never leave your fire unattended. If it’s burning, someone should be in your campsite at all times. Your fire is your responsibility. 
  1. Make Sure Your Fire is Out:
    When you’re done reveling in the warmth and glow of your campfire, take extra steps to make sure it’s out. Add water to the ashes, use a shovel or log to swirl everything around, and repeat. Fires can continue to smolder beneath the surface, and even relight itself after you’ve left.