The days are long, school’s out, and the night sky sparkles.
How about firing up the fun with a campfire? There’s nothing like sitting in a magical trance with family and friends, letting the dancing fire entertain you, and roasting one more s’more.
With that in mind, here are 10 tips for building a campfire! We’ll also share two fun finds to help you build the perfect fire every time and roast the perfectly toasted marshmallow. 1. Use dry firewood!
Freshly cut wood contains up to 50 percent moisture. If steam bubbles and hisses on the fire, it’s wet or green—plus, it will make more campfire smoke, which burns the eyes.
2. Prepare a good supply of “fuel.”
Collect your fuel:
(a) tinder (dry leaves, pine needles, grasses, wood shavings, rolled paper balls)
(b) kindling (dry, dead twigs)
(c) chopped firewood (thicker than 3 inches in diameter)
You’ll be starting your fire with the tinder and kindling—which provides surface area without a lot of weight to get a fire going; logs are too much weight in the beginning.
For an average fire, we suggest two “hats” worth of kindling and tinder. Once you’re in the process of fire-making, you don’t want to run out of fuel!
3. Clear a site at least 10 feet across.
Debris should be removed so that you are starting the fire on bare soil. The cleared circle should be about 10 feet across. Never locate your site near overhanging branches or standing deadwood—or, too close to your tent. A fire ring can be built with stones and rocks to contain the fire. Keep a bucket of water close to the fire for emergency use.
4. Create a base.
There are two basic types: the tepee and the log cabin.
We recommend the teepee for its informal beauty and higher burning flames. Building a teepee can be learned and you can cheat with a Frame-A-Fire . . .
5. Frame your fire.
Here's am easy way to build a perfect fire every time:
It’s called “Frame-A-Fire” and keeps firewood at the perfect angle for burning.
You hold the pole over the fire and just jig it with a quick jerk to flip the roasting tongs (and food) back and forth. The result is a more evenly toasted marshmallow or wiener.
It’s really lot of fun and safe, especially for kids!
See more about the Fire Fishing Pole at Almanac.com.
10. Check the skies!
Finally, check the weather on AccuWeather.com and consult these handy tools on Almanac.com:
When will the Sun set?
When will the Moon be shining?
What are the best days for camping?
What are the best fishing days?
An evening by the outdoor fire is always more magical if the night is clear—and the Moon lights up the sky!
For summer fun, win that Fire Fishing Pole to cook your food outdoors. When you JIG the "rod," it FLIPS your hotdog or marshmallow! Sponsored by The Old Farmer's Almanac. Click here to enter contest!
The classic s'more is always delicious. Here are some more creative recipes as you enjoy the fire:
Turtles: Graham crackers, caramel and milk chocolate, marshmallow, and whole pecan halves
Nutty Banana: Graham crackers, Reese’s peanut butter cup, marshmallow, and banana
Strawberry Chocolate: Graham crackers, dark chocolate, marshmallow, and fresh strawberries
Grasshopper: Graham crackers, marshmallow, and Andes mints
Caribbean: Graham crackers, marshmallow, caramel, and shaved coconut
See more s’mores ideas—plus, a recipe for amazing graham crackers. If you make these, you’ll become a camping legend!
Besides s’mores, here are some great recipes to cook on your campfire:
Barbecue Bean Supper
Want a quick, simple recipe for the grill? Try hobo packs—packages of vegetables or meats wrapped in foil and cooked directly on hot coals. See recipe and photos.
Thunderstorms have the potential to impact Independence Day fireworks and outings in parts of the central and eastern United States, while dry weather will raise fire safety concerns in the West.
Batches of rain and thunderstorms will swing through Wales and England on Wednesday, continuing the threat for flash flooding and localised travel delays.
A second landslide has stalled rescue efforts following a deadly landslide in China over the weekend.
Audrey, the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the month of June, killed at least 500 people in the southern United States and caused an estimated $150 million in damage.
Here are five easy, survival expert-approved ways to prepare a campfire without a lighter or match.
April-like temperatures and heavy rain last week have been replaced by uncomfortable heat and humidity across Beijing and northeastern China this week.
Areas across Arizona are so hot that cactus are dying, food is baking and plastic is melting.
A slow-moving storm system will unleash several days of dangerous weather across Germany this week.