Camping is not camping until the campfire is light. There is nothing better than roasting marshmallows on an open fire for children and creating the ultimate s’mores. Teaching a child how to build a campfire is an important skill for budding camping enthusiasts. Flame source, fire starters, kindling, and firewood are the essentials for creating a campfire.
Use a Flame Source to Start a Fire
Matches or a lighter are the basic flame source for starting a fire. However, creating fire from a flint strip is the most fun for kids. Buy a flint strip from a camping store and follow the instructions specific to the product. The Flint strip has magnesium on one side and the other side is the flint strip to create the spark for the fire.
The basic instructions are to shave the magnesium from the flint strip into a small pile. Best to shave the magnesium into a leaf or piece of aluminum foil. After a small pile of magnesium pile is created it is time to ignite the magnesium. Simply strike the flint side to create sparks. Once the sparks hit the magnesium it will create a flame. After the flame has begun, quickly add dry leaves, dryer lint, or paper to feed the fire.
Feed the Fire With a Fire Starter
After the flame source is created, feed the fire with a fire starter. The fire starter should light easily and burn well. Firestarters are needed to begin a fire before the kindling and larger pieces of wood are placed on the campfire. The absence of a fire starter creates more of a smoky fire rather than a beautiful roaring fire. As well, the absence of a fire starter creates frustration for the kids and parents making the campfire.
Before going on the family campfire make homemade fire starters with the kids. Firestarters can be bought but it is more fun melting wax and creating unique creations for the campfire.
Kindling Essential for a Campfire
Kindling is a must for the campfire to be successful. Kindling is small pieces of wood or twigs that burn quickly. If no kindling is available, simply split wood into kindling size pieces. Place the kindling in a criss-cross pattern around the fire starter.
Firestarter is in the center of the campfire. Place 4 strips horizontally in the campfire, with the next four pieces place vertically. Continue this pattern for four or five layers. The fire starter will begin to burn the kindling. As well, it is important for the kindling to be dry for a successful campfire.
Use Firewood to Create Roaring Campfire
Logs are the last part needed for a roaring campfire. After the kindling has been burning for several minutes place the logs in a criss-cross pattern on the kindling. Be sure to not smother the fire. The biggest mistake for beginners is placing the logs on prematurely. As well, split the logs if they are too big, otherwise, the fire will smoke rather than burn.
Teaching kids how to start a campfire is a fun and rewarding activity for families to do together. Campfires are a must for any camping experience and kids will enjoy starting a fire from scratch.