Last June I wrote a series of articles on Camping for Beginners. As I watched Lyle building the fire on our last camping trip I thought a campfire tutorial might be good to add to the series.
Lyle starts with several sheets of newspaper which he wads into balls. I didn’t get a picture of that stage of the process, but I expect you can figure that part out without a visual.
He arranges them in the bottom of the fire pit all bunched together.
Next he splits a piece of firewood into smaller and smaller pieces for kindlin’.
He arranges the little slivers of kindlin’ across the wadded-up paper.
After about 3 layers of kindlin’ Lyle starts adding slightly larger pieces of firewood in the same cross-hatch pattern.
Once he gets the firewood stacked up to his satisfaction he lights the newspaper with a match or lighter. As the paper burns it catches the kindlin’ on fire, which in turn lights the bigger pieces.
In a few minutes, when the initial stack is burning good, Lyle adds a few normal-sized fire logs on top.
Then it’s time to just sit back and watch the fire for a bit. It’s burning too hot for cooking at this stage.
When the logs have burned down to a good bed of smoldering coals, that’s when it’s time to flip the grate over the fire. Now you can cook!
Here’s what we cooked over the fire that weekend:
- bacon and eggs in an iron skillet on the grate
- salmon in the burger basket (lying on the ground in the background)
- hot dogs on sticks (propped on the squiggly thing that’s sticking up out of the fire)
- foil-wrapped potatoes directly in the coals
You can find other campfire recipes in the Camp Cooking post listed below.