Campfire Safety Tips for Beginners

Camping should be a fun and relaxing way to experience nature and disconnect from daily stress. However, if you relax too much around a campfire then they can quickly turn dangerous.

That’s why the Mammoth Bound team is here to share the best campfire safety tips for beginners. Read all about them below before visiting Mammoth Lakes or any camping area, and then visit Mammoth Bound for the best deals on activities and gear rentals in Mammoth Lakes!

Always Use Established Fire Rings

One of the best parts of camping in a popular place like Mammoth Lakes is that there are often easily accessible developed campgrounds. Although you’ll likely need a reservation to camp in a developed campground, you also get access to facilities like bathrooms and campgrounds with fire rings by camping there.

A fire ring can be a metal ring with a grate over it or even just several rocks arranged in a circle, but no matter what they look like their purpose is to prevent fire from spreading. Plus, established fire rings are also already safely spaced away from other fuel sources so you don’t have to decide where to build one.

The best time to camp often lines up with when there is the highest fire danger, so always use fire rings to keep your campfire where it belongs!

Never Leave a Fire Unattended

It’s easy to relax around a fire, but you can’t leave it alone.

Even with a fire ring there’s still a chance an ember is picked up by the wind and carried to another fuel source or a heavy log could roll out of a rock fire ring.

Campfires are one of the best parts of camping, and most of your best camping memories will be made around them. Don’t leave them unattended and put them out completely before you leave your campsite or go to bed.

Never Leave a Smoking Fire Behind

It can be difficult to tell when your campfire is out. Common sense tells you that if there’s no fire then the fire is out, but like the old saying goes, where there’s smoke there’s fire.

A smoking campfire, even one with just a thin trail of smoke, is still too hot to leave behind. You must smother all your embers, remove all fuel, and then douse the remaining ashes with water to ensure that there is no chance the fire reignites or spreads once you’re gone.

Read Local Fire Restrictions Before Camping 

High temperatures and dry weather make for ideal wildfire conditions, and camping in a dry area with a campfire is an easy way to start one.

That’s why it’s important to read up on all fire restrictions for the area you’re camping in and adhere to them. Most developed campsites will have fire restrictions posted around the area and some may even close if the fire danger is too high, but if you’re backpacking or dispersed camping then it is up to you to know the fire rules and follow them. 

Don’t Move Firewood

Lastly, local bugs can live in stored firewood, and if you bring firewood from your home to a new environment then you’re bringing the bugs with you.

Keep invasive species out by only using firewood you bought near your campground!

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