MotoCamps Life

Ignite Your Passion for Adventure

When you’re out camping, few things rival the serenity of ending the day around a roaring campfire, even on Virginia’s most balmy nights. Picture someone strumming a guitar and singing campfire songs, or marshmallows roasting for s’mores. The warmth of the flickering flames, accompanied by captivating stories exchanged among friends, and laughter resonating through the wild, create an experience that epitomizes the camping essence. In fact, for most individuals, a camping trip isn’t complete without these elements. Imagine a neat pile of dried and split wood, the roaring crackle as it transforms into glowing coals, and a hint of smoke dissipating into the clear, dark sky.

And then, there’s the adventure of cooking over an open fire—not limited to just skewered hot dogs. Imagine delectable campfire meals, cooked in foil or cast iron dutch ovens. These dishes somehow taste better because because it’s rare that we get to cook like that.

While many of us enjoy the excitement of a campfire throughout the seasons, August 5th offers a perfect occasion to celebrate National Campfire Day by building a big, crackling fire and enjoying some time around it. Let’s delve into a few fantastic ways to enjoy this experience, all while doing it safely.

Enhance Your Campfire Experience with these opportunities to Savor the Moment

  • Roast marshmallows for s’mores
  • Share stories that entertain, inspire, and connect hearts around the fire
  • If you’re far enough away from city lights, spend some time stargazing and see if you can find constellations
  • Embrace quiet moments as you watch the flames dance

A Quick Guide to Building a Fire

To build a campfire, you need a few fundamental elements: heat, a fuel source, and oxygen. For generating heat, you can use matches or a lighter. For our campfire, the fuel source is undoubtedly wood, and oxygen is readily available in the air.

To start your fire, begin with small, easily ignitable materials known as tinder and kindling. Tinder can be anything that burn rapidly and intensely, including dry leaves, pine needles, dryer lint, cotton balls, paper, and cardboard.

Tinder serves to ignite and sustain the combustion of kindling, which consists of twigs and small branches. The tinder ignites quickly and burns hot, ideally causing the kindling to catch fire promptly. Subsequently, the larger logs will catch fire and burn.

Follow these steps to get your fire going:

  • Step 1 – Choose a safe spot away from flammable materials, following local regulations.
  • Step 2 – Collect tinder (dry leaves, twigs, paper), kindling (small sticks), and fuelwood (larger logs).
  • Step 3 – Construct a teepee with kindling over tinder, then light the tinder from an opening.
  • Step 4 – As the fire grows, add fuelwood logs to maintain the flames.
  • Step 5 – Never leave the fire unattended, and douse with water before leaving.

Rules for Firewood

While you’re traveling, you’ll likely come across numerous warnings—regardless of your destination—regarding firewood. Many parks, both at the state and national level, have regulations against bringing your own firewood. Naturally, this can be vexing. Campfires at campsites and parks can sometimes incur relatively high costs for a rather modest bundle. Moreover, when a fire burns intensely, you can easily exhaust an entire bundle in no time.

However, when you’re camping amidst the woods, you must consider the environment that surrounds you. These restrictions on external firewood are not implemented solely as a revenue stream for campsites. Instead, their purpose is to safeguard the forests. Invasive species, like the emerald ash borer, have the potential to wreak havoc on local ecosystems. Being non-native typically means that they lack natural predators to maintain their population.

When you transport firewood during your travels, you significantly raise the risk of introducing an invasive species. Hence, it’s crucial to do your part by purchasing locally sourced firewood from the campsites you visit. At the very least, this contributes more funding to local campsites or parks, ensuring their ability to continue serving other campers.

Basic Fire Safety

As enjoyable as a fire may be, it also presents inherent dangers. Fires have the potential to cause extensive damage when left unchecked. Dry conditions, combined with wind and a mere spark, can wreak havoc on an environment, displace people from their homes and cause millions of dollars in damages.
Whenever you start a campfire, remain mindful of your surroundings. Ensure that the fire remains under control, particularly during dry conditions. Clear an area of at least five feet around the fire pit to prevent any sparks from landing on flammable materials.

Most campgrounds provide designated campfire rings. If they don’t, plan to construct one to contain your fire. Dig a small depression in the ground and encircle it with rocks. Alternatively, you can add our portable smokeless propane fire pit as an add-on to your overland trailer rental. This is the perfect solution for campgrounds without a designated fire ring, for use when staying at dispersed campsites to adhere to Leave No Trace best practices, and it can even be safely (but cautiously) used during fire bans.

Never leave your fire unattended and avoid letting the fire grow larger than necessary for cooking or warmth.

Above all, when it’s time to head to bed for the night, ensure that your fire is thoroughly extinguished. Pour water over the flames, stir the remains with a shovel, and confirm that all embers and ashes are completely soaked and extinguished before leaving the site.

Ready to celebrate National Campfire Day in style?

Book your overland trailer rental now and experience the freedom, serenity, and joy of camping with loved ones around a mesmerizing campfire. Our friendly team is here to assist you every step of the way, from choosing the perfect trailer packages for your needs to recommending stunning camping destinations.