Roaring campfire
Photo: Amber Dickson

Whether at the beach, the woods, or your own backyard, a campfire is a guaranteed way to relax and enjoy your favorite people.  Take a little time to stock a campfire box with a few of the following fire-starting supplies.  It will make lighting a campfire quick and easy and therefore more likely to happen. Your future (smoke-scented) self will thank you.         

Materials needed for this project
Photo: Amber Dickson

1.  Newsprint

If you still receive your news in print, stash a stack in your box.  Also, I know from experience that a mutual fund prospectus works well, too.  Crumple the newsprint into dense balls when it comes time to light the fire.

2.  Bug Spray

Once the fire has started, most bugs will steer clear.  Until then, insect repellent will make the experience much more enjoyable.

3.  Cardboard Tubes

Raid the recycling bin for newsprint and cardboard tubes.  Stuff paper into the tubes and then wrap with additional sheets of paper.

Fire-starter supplies
Photo: Amber Dickson

4.  Petroleum Jelly Cotton Balls

Stir 100% cotton balls into melted petroleum jelly and allow it to be absorbed.  Store in a glass jar or small tin.  These are small but very effective at ignition.

5.  Paraffin Sawdust Fire-starters

I live with an Eagle Scout and two Cub Scouts and they often whip up these handy fire-starters.  After melting paraffin wax in a double boiler, mix in sawdust until the mixture is the consistency of cookie dough.  Portion into the segments of a cardboard egg carton until hardened then separate into individual fire-starters.

Alt text!
Photo: Amber Dickson

6.  Kindling Bundle

A handful of dry twigs bound with twine will free you from a search for kindling around your fire site.

7.  Flashlight

A flashlight is very useful when dusk falls faster than you think it will.  It is also helpful if like me you tend to set the lighter down somewhere and are unable to find it in the dark.

8.  Wand Lighter

Go ahead and stock your box with two of these.  They always seem to run out in the most inopportune time.

Our cave dwelling ancestors found gathering around the fire to be restful and a good way to strengthen social ties.  That same attraction to fire is still in us modern folk today.  Gather up a few supplies and make plans to build a campfire tonight!

How to Stock a Campfire Box
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Need a tutorial on how to start a campfire? Our friends at ManMadeDIY have you covered!