How To Start A Camp Fire
Knowing how to start a campfire involves following a few basic rules for safety and effectiveness. There are several types of camp fire styles with the teepee being the most popular method.
To build a campfire, you'll need:
- Garden trowel, spade and square shovel.
- Kindling (dry twigs, small pieces of wood)
- Dry logs
- Firestarters or newspaper (optional)
- Long matches
- Create a fire pit if a fire ring is not provided. Dig a shallow pit with the spade or trowel. and surround it with large rocks. Clear away twigs, wood or flammable items or you'll have a fire spreading through the area. Use the square shovel to clear the area around the pit down to the dirt, about three to five feet all around the pit. If camping, clear the area around your tent, as well.
- Stack your kindling in the center of the pit. You can put a firestarter or slightly crumpled newspaper here as well.
- Create a tepee by standing small- to medium-sized logs vertically around the kindling. Lean the tops of the logs together to form what looks like a tepee. The logs will balance on each other, so you may need a little patience in getting them all to stand. Don't smother your fire by making a tight tepee, your fire needs oxygen to survive so make sure it gets some.
- Light the kindling in the middle using a long match. You can also use a lighter or short match, but a long match eases the process.
- Tend your fire. You may need to add more kindling to keep it going and you'll need to add more logs as they burn down. Once the fire is going, add some bigger logs.
Keep all flammable items upwind of the fire. If camping, make sure your tent is far away from the fire. To avoid a heavily smoking fire, don't use leaves or pine needles in your kindling. Enjoy your fire, but be responsible. When you are done with your fire, douse it with water or smother it with soil. Never leave a fire burning unattended.