Campfires--yes or no? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-22-2015, 06:03 PM   #15
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My take on campfires,
I grew up camping and my earliest fondest memories of my parents and grandparents are from sitting around one swapping stories and sharing dreams around one.
We were a close family and often were together, conversation was always the agenda for the evening. I recall those times but for the life of me I can't remember them with the same fondness as the ones where a campfire was involved.
Maybe it the way a fire illuminates and draws attention to each individual. Whatever's the reason I want my family to have what I had.
Btw, wire mesh logs filled with wood pellets cut the cost and supplements a nice evening fire.
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Old 07-22-2015, 06:35 PM   #16
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Sorry for the double post. Something went haywire with the wifi I guess.
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Old 07-22-2015, 07:22 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
My take on campfires. A number of years ago, in our backpaking stage, campfires were prohibited in some areas because of a lack of fuel. We quickly learned that a campfire was not a necessity, in it was not even desirable. Here's I learned, A campfire is a light that draws your attention to it. You stare at the campfire all evening. Thus destroying you night vision. Without the campfire there are more stars in the sky, more critters to be seen, and more bears that turn into stumps.

Even today many of the places we camp there are no campfires allowed. Death Valley's Sun Set campground comes to mind.
I agree Byron. On a recent 60 day trip we had 3 campfires, mostly for roasting hotdogs on our rare non-healthy food occasions. That said fires are great when folks gather. I try to bring kiln dried scraps from home. So far rangers say OK. Dry hardwood burns hot and smokeless. Vendor supplied campfire wood is usually so green its hard to start and lays down a smoke screen worthy of a beach landing.
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Old 07-22-2015, 07:23 PM   #18
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Yeah, some of us have the Repose wood pellet fire logs from reposenow.com . They make for some affordable campfires, with a 50 lb bag of pellets only costing a few bucks. And no worries about carrying beetles or diseases with your wood pellets from home.
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Old 07-22-2015, 07:56 PM   #19
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Have used this one for a couple years now, comes in handy when you spend the day away from the camp site, like fishing or late day hikes. It's nice when you can come back at 9 pm, light the fire for an hour while you ready dinner over the charcoal grill. Turn it off, put it under the fifth wheels overhang and go to bed.

The gas smell seems to go away once it heats up, that or you get used to it and can't smell it anymore. Can't tell which!

Can't see the flames if it's not dark enough.

This one is too low to the ground.

Have to almost sit on top of it to get much heat, although I don't have it cranked up. They suck a lot of gas.

Runs off the trailers quick connect.

Can use it under the awning.

We use a real fire if we have friends with us, not a lot of ambiance with the propane fire. But it's too convenient to ignore for a quick fire whenever you want one.

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Old 07-22-2015, 09:12 PM   #20
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I Googled Fire Dancer and I got a link to some "Fire Dancers" guaranteed to light up any party. But I also found this listing for Fire Dancer and also Little Red Fire Pit. But they are a bit $$$$$:


http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&key...l_7kg78y5x4m_b
The Fire Dancer is pricey but its loved by its owners due to its small size and how well it closes up and stores away. Costco sells one called an Outlander? that is larger and way more BTU's for about $90 but that one does not pack away as well.
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Old 07-23-2015, 08:03 AM   #21
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for Cari and I, we rarely (once a season??) put up a log-fire. And then only with dry wood at a place that doesn't have the local-wood clause so we can enjoy a fairly smokeless fire. We do however put up a citronella candle under a large kelty noah 16 tarp (set at ~7ft to 9ft up so all is safe). We find the small dancing flame enjoyable, keeps _some_ of the bugs away and we can still see the stars outside the tarp.


There was a recent Roadtreking email article that shared some parks were pondering no-fire-zones that would allow campers in a predominantly up-wind zone to have fire smoke/smell free camping. I'd sign up for one of those upwind sites if possible.


: ) Thom
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Old 07-23-2015, 08:37 AM   #22
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I don't think I would be able to play my guitar without a campfire. For the last 35 years, they have gone hand-in-hand.

I gotta say, this thread has been an eye opener. For all my life, a campfire has been a big part of what camping has been to me, and the memories with friends and family, sitting around one, are priceless.



I imagine into the future, as I travel all of North America, I will encounter these no-burn campsites more, and more. It will most often be just the two of us, instead of the larger groups I am used to camping with, so the fire will not be missed as much.

Fortunately, where I do most of my local camping, there will always be fires. We have about 20+ cords of split wood, that should last us a few years.

Here is a typical campfire for us.



Well okay, maybe we were burning off scrap branches in our gravel pit, but it still was fun, and cool to do.
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Old 07-23-2015, 08:57 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
My take on campfires. A number of years ago, in our backpaking stage, campfires were prohibited in some areas because of a lack of fuel. We quickly learned that a campfire was not a necessity, in it was not even desirable. Here's I learned, A campfire is a light that draws your attention to it. You stare at the campfire all evening. Thus destroying you night vision. Without the campfire there are more stars in the sky, more critters to be seen, and more bears that turn into stumps.

Even today many of the places we camp there are no campfires allowed. Death Valley's Sun Set campground comes to mind.
I loved backpacking without a fire. It meant you could go far longer without stinky clothes. It's easier to cook over a stove, too.

Camping- I don't do a fire if I'm alone. If I'm with a group I enjoy it, but not having one is okay, too, though one of those propane ones might be nice. We've got pretty severe fire restrictions this summer so we'll be lucky if the propane fires are allowed on the next trip. Or charcoal, which bugs me more than no fires.
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Old 07-23-2015, 09:03 AM   #24
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Campfires--yes or no?

Real wood fires for us, too.

Here's a dilemma I have relating to campfires. We buy local wood for burning, but find that it is often impossible to split and hard to start. I have been bringing a small supply of kindling split from juniper heartwood. But I am learning even that could be problematic and illegal.

What alternatives have you found that work well as starters for the "junk" wood that is commonly sold for campfires?
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Old 07-23-2015, 09:11 AM   #25
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You can make firestarters that will work with just about anything short of a cement brick. Egg carton, fill the holes with shavings or sawdust but shavings are probably environmentally safer, pour wax in, then after it sets break them into individual cups. Great for starting charcoal chimneys, too. But not sure if all you can get is big logs whether you could start a fire with just one or two of these. (Though I've done it with wet wood, back in my Girl Scout days.)
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Old 07-23-2015, 09:13 AM   #26
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I loved backpacking without a fire. It meant you could go far longer without stinky clothes. It's easier to cook over a stove, too.
We usually had a fire when backpacking, and always do when canoeing. I would say about 80% of the time.

I find the lovely campfire smell is like a perfume that masks the body odour from lots of exertion.

Here is a shot from a couple years back. Note the cooking area away from the fire, and the fact we set up the fire below the high water mark of the lake, so any evidence will be washed away.



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What alternatives have you found that work well as starters for the "junk" wood that is commonly sold for campfires?
For starting difficult fires, I have made fires starters. What I do is to loosely reroll toilet paper, soak it in melted wax, and then as it starts to harden, squish it a bit to flatten it, and then cut it into smaller squares then too. They will burn for about 5 minutes, and usually get even poor kindling burning.
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Old 07-23-2015, 09:29 AM   #27
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...What I do is to loosely reroll toilet paper, soak it in melted wax, and then as it starts to harden, squish it a bit to flatten it, and then cut it into smaller squares then too. They will burn for about 5 minutes, and usually get even poor kindling burning.
The wax soaked tpr work great. We have dozens pre-made stored in a moisture proof bag. The one thing we include in our build is placing dryer lint inside of roll before the wax-soak. Simple solution.

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Old 07-23-2015, 09:32 AM   #28
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The wax soaked tpr work great. We have dozens pre-made stored in a moisture proof bag. The one thing we include in our build is placing dryer lint inside of roll before the wax-soak. Simple solution.

Thom
I have heard of the dryer lint before too. Some people use sawdust. Others just soak cotton swabs with Vaseline, and keep them in a pill bottle.

The ones that Coghlans makes work fairly well too, i have picked up a pack of them when some home-made solutions (which work a bit better) are not at hand.
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