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Author Topic: Camping without a camp fire  (Read 4534 times)

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  • Day Hiker
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Camping without a camp fire
« on: July 10, 2011, 04:28:42 PM »

Lately, I've become a big fan of camping/hiking. The more I look around on the internet, the more I see about people calling for no fires when they came. Where I'm from, it's almost like an essential part of camping. I wanna hear everyone's stance on it, do  you build a fire when you camp, or not?


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Re: Camping without a camp fire
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2011, 04:53:45 PM »

Yes and no...I seem to go through cycles. For a few years I totally got out of fire building routine. Lately I have gotten back into it. At least on car camping and group trips anyway.

When I solo I usually don't build one unless I stop early and the wood is readily available. I tend to hike later and have found that by the time the fire gets a bed of coals to keep it going I am ready for the bag. A lot of work just to knock it down and go to bed.


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Re: Camping without a camp fire
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2011, 06:02:28 AM »

Have done it both ways, and usually fit the fire to the situation.  Summer camping makes it kinda redundant, but I like to cold weather camp.  If I can find a rock or cutoff to reflect the heat back to me, I like to build a fire and camp without a tent.  The weather has to be right, but a clear night, even tending the fire every hour or so, is the ticket!
Side note...make sure you follow regulations about camping in rock shelters and near clifflines.

Mark W

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Re: Camping without a camp fire
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2011, 09:01:12 AM »

When I first started camping I nearly always made a fire.  It didn't really matter if I was camping solo or with others, a fire was just something that I always built when out in the woods.  Now, a few years later and after some "maturing" as a backpacker, I seldom build a campfire. I can't really even remember the last time I built a fire when I was camping solo.

When Esta (Kygirl) and I camp we don't usually build one unless we're cooking, but if one of our friends is camping with us then we're more likely to build a fire for "entertainment".  They certainly have their place on camping trips (especially during cold weather), but once you get used to not having one they seem like more trouble than they're worth.  Not to mention the impacts they create, which are easy to overlook. I've gotten to the point where it's hard for me to view user-created fire rings as anything other than litter.  

If you've never camped without a fire I strongly recommend that you give it a try.  There's really nothing to lose and you leave yourself with more time to explore around your campsite, hike longer, etc.  Pick a campsite where you have a clear view of the sky so that the stars can be your entertainment instead of a campfire and just lay on the ground on your sleeping pad.  A lot less effort than a fire and just as pleasant.  


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Re: Camping without a camp fire
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2011, 12:51:13 PM »

Fires, for me, are basically entertainment - "setting the mood" - except in the winter - then it's nice to have some good heat. 

Planning another trip to Iceland (this time with our backpacks  ;D )  - No worries about fire - there are hardly any trees around to start with, just wide open skies & peaks & valleys & I can go on & on & on

.....june 2012 isn't that far away is it?


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Re: Camping without a camp fire
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2011, 05:32:25 PM »

I'm like Mark, used to build them all the time, rarely do now.

Fires can be nice, but generally are not necessary.  I will only build a fire if there is an existing fire ring.

Smoke is good for warding off mosquitoes, but I carry cigars around for that purpose.

One year I hiked three weeks along the Colorado Trail and never built a fire.  It was the middle of the second week before I realized I hadn't built a fire during the trip.  I was on a cycle of rising and falling with the sun and had a camp stove, so there wasn't any need for fire. 

« Last Edit: July 25, 2011, 05:37:23 PM by Redbeard »


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Re: Camping without a camp fire
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2011, 11:30:45 PM »

def. a fire builder just the comfort and security when your a solo trekker off the trail like i am most of the time
White man make big fire sit far away- Indian make small fire sit close
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