Gotta Keep Warm
I love camping more than the average person, but it is truly shocking to me how many people are unable to build a campfire in the woods. But aside from being just able to build one, there are reasons why I believe that everyone should be able to make one in case of an emergency or near your camping site at night. It’s a step by step process that is not as difficult as you may think, and my mission now is to give you the guidelines for building a fire that keeps you warm.
Camping is one of my favorite things to do with friends as I love being at one with nature and seeing creatures that live outside the city limits. Even just a drive through the woods sometimes can do me a world of good, but nothing beats a weekend camping with friends over a weekend. Luckily for me, most times when I go camping, there are more than enough people in the group that can start a fire. But there have been a few times that I have been the only one able to, and it began to boggle my mind since so many of my friends love to camp. I figured that it would be easy to build one and that a ton of information would be available in books or a website. But in reality, you probably should have someone teach you how to make one and go through the trial and error of it all before you fully learn how to make one properly.
One of the cornerstones to building a proper fire is having adequate airflow to build the fire in stages using the proper amounts of fuel. If you have not grasped these key elements yet, you should not start. To get started, it is important to learn how fires actually start, as there are several ways to get one going using various types of wood and techniques from cultures throughout the world.
Fires are chemical reactions that make light and heat, sometimes with smoke. The combination of two chemicals trading electrons leaves a bit of excess energy to get rid of. To start, you will need an oxidizer and fuel for a campfire, with the air functioning as an oxidizer, and the wood as fuel. There’s more to it, of course, For example, if the wood is left in the air and nothing is added, it will not just catch fire. There are also other combinations that can be used like glycerine and potassium permanganate to start a fire.
Starting a fire on a rock is fairly difficult as the reaction needs a specific amount of heat in order to get started. A few of the fuel/oxidizer combinations react to temperature more than others. As evaporation needs energy, the wood you use should be as dry as possible for efficiency. Wet wood is not the best way of getting wood to burn as the energy ends up creating steam instead of fire.
The more air you have, the better as it is a big component of getting the fire you really want. You should always remember to leave gaps between the wood so that oxygen can flow throughout and begin to emit fire. A well-constructed fire will have layers of not only dry material but also plenty of airflows.