HOW TO BUILD A SAFE CAMPFIRE
For some, a camping experience is incomplete without an open campfire. It’s where you cook your food, boil your water, and it also provides you warmth when the night becomes chilly. Campers need to be careful, though. If campfires aren’t constructed, used and extinguished properly, wildfires can start and cause significant damage to the environment. Read on to find out how to build a safe campfire.
IS IT SAFE AND ALLOWED?
As a responsible camper, you need to make sure if building a campfire in your campsite is safe and/or even allowed. You should check if there are fire restrictions in your campsite and region. If authorities have issued a fire ban, you’re not allowed to set up an open campfire.
You should also check the weather conditions of your campsite. If the area will be exposed to dry and extreme winds, it will be hazardous to build a campfire.
FIND A GOOD LOCATION
In finding a good and safe location for your fire pit, certain conditions must be met. First, the area must be cleared of long grass, branches, leaves and twigs that may be lying on the ground. You should stay away from trees, bushes and low-hanging branches. The area should also be protected from gusts of wind.
There should be at least 10 feet of distance between the campfire and your tents, chairs and other camping equipment. Campers should also keep anything that is flammable or gas-powered far away from the fire.
PREPARE THE SITE
Once the area is cleared, dig into the soil for the fire pit and create a border around it using large rocks. Don’t use a flammable liquid to start and maintain your fire. Instead, collect and use firewood. However, never cut down trees or branches. Fresh wood doesn’t burn and causes a lot of smoke. You may be also cutting down the homes of birds and other wildlife. Instead, use fallen dead wood to keep your fire going.
ALWAYS KEEP WATCH
Never leave your campfire unattended, especially if you have children and pets nearby. Someone should always be watching the fire pit. The fire is best kept small so that it’s easy to control and extinguish. Campers must have some water nearby in case there’s an emergency, and you need to put out the fire quickly.
Campers should extinguish the campfire before going to bed and before leaving the campsite. Even if there are no longer any flames, only leave if there are no more embers. To ensure that the campfire has been extinguished properly, pour a lot of water over the fire pit and wait until there’s no more hissing sound. Wait until everything has been burned to ash. If you don’t follow these precautions, you could be responsible for a wildfire. In short, ensure the fire is completely extinguished without a doubt using water and covering with soil.
Camping doesn’t feel the same without a campfire. Campfires are a crucial part of the overall experience. Just follow these reminders, so you won’t run into any fire-related emergencies. As responsible campers and nature lovers, we should do our part in keeping our surroundings and the environment safe.
Is there anything you can add? Please share your experience and advice below.