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How to Make a Campfire

How to Make a Campfire

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When making a campfire, you have to be mindful about where you place it, what type of wood you need, and a few other elements. It can be a difficult task for those who are not familiar with what to do.

Because of that, 5-Minute Crafts has put a guide together on how to safely and properly make your own campfire.

1. Find a place for your campfire.

You’ll need an adequate and safe place to start your campfire.

  • First, check if there’s a designated area for fires.
  • Check if there are existing fire rings you can use.
  • If there aren’t any fire rings around, find a place with bare earth to start your fire.
  • Make sure there isn’t any grass, even if it’s dead, on the place of your choosing.
  • If you don’t find an adequate site with bare earth, make your own by digging and raking the ground.
  • Create a dirt platform on the center of the site, and make sure it’s at least 3 or 4 inches thick.

2. Gather some wood.

You’ll need 3 different types of wood. Tinder, kindling, and fuelwood.

1. Tinder is used to start the fire, as it is extremely flammable.

  • Find small twigs, dry leaves, grass, and needles.

2. Kindling is used to help the flames grow.

  • Sticks smaller than 1 inch are usually good for this.

3. Fuelwood is used to keep your fire going.

  • Any larger piece of wood will do here. Think of branches about 4 inches wide.

Important: Stack the wood you’re not using yet upwind from your campfire.

3. Start laying the fire.

There are 4 ways you can start laying your fire:

  • Teepee: Lay the kindling as if you were building a tent.
  • Lean to: Here, we also make a tent, but a different kind. Start by sticking pieces of kindling over the tinder, firm onto the ground, at around a 30º angle. Make sure the ends of the sticks are pointing toward the wind.
  • Cross: Stack the kindling on top of each other with a crisscross method.
  • Log cabin: Make a pile of tinder, then surround it with kindling branches at a right angle. Picture a small box cabin. That’s what you’re going for. Top it off with kindling.

4. Lighting the campfire.

  • Use a match or a lighter to start burning the tinder.
  • Blow gently on the flame to help it spread within the campfire.
  • Add fuelwood as you go to keep the fire going.
  • Be careful to not smother the structure you’ve built when adding more fuelwood.

5. Extinguishing the flames.

  • Let the wood burn completely to ash.
  • If you don’t have time to wait for this, pour water on top of the campfire, making sure to extinguish all the burning embers.
  • If you don’t have water, throwing dirt or sand on top of the campfire also works.
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