Fire Building Techniques
Starting Your Campfire
Getting Started - Tinder - Kindling - Fuel
Tinder must be easily lit with a lighter, match, or spark and must be
100% dry. We suggest dry pine needles, dry grass, or pine cones.
Kindling is usually anything smaller than a pencil. Look for small, dead, twigs on the ground but never deface a living tree or
shrub to build your fire.
Fuel is dry, dead fall wood, no larger than the size of your wrist or
lower leg. Again, do not cut fresh timber for any
fire! Green wood does not burn. No wood brought on to camp properties please.
Lighting that Flame
You've collected your fire starting materials, now what?
Pile them on and hope a fire starts? No, of course not!
should start a fire first by igniting the tinder bundle. Once this
starts smoking, add kindling a little at a time until it's burning
well, then, add your fuel (dry wood) a little at a time.
starting a fire without matches? Yes, there are techniques for
that too! They include using flint and steel, a magnifying lens, or friction.
Mastering one would be great, all three even better. You can find
specifics on any of the resources listed below or using the wide world of Google and YouTube.
Put your fire completely out! Douse your flames with water
or cover with snow. As Smokey the Bear
says, "Only you can prevent forest fires."
We appreciate your efforts in completely putting out fires and leading with a leave no trace attitude.
3 Great Resources:
- The BSA Field Handbook has some pages on Fire Building
- Baden Powell's 1st Edition Field Handbook
- Camp Lore and Wood Crafts by Dan Beard