Campfire Safety

Having a campfire? Here are some tips to keep in mind to ensure a safe and enjoyable campfire experience:

Select Your Site

  • In campgrounds or recreational areas, use the designated stoves, rings, or fire pits. They are designed to keep fires from spreading and are the best choice for a safe campfire.
  • When outside of a campground, use sites that are clear of dry grass, bushes, leaves, branches, tree trunks, peat moss, and overhanging branches. If the site has already been used for a campfire, use the same site.
  • Build your campfires on level ground that is sheltered from wind.
  • If you can’t build your fire near a water source, have a large container of water nearby to keep your campfire under control. When you are done, fully extinguish it by soaking it, stirring it, and soaking it again.

Prepare Your Campfire

Tools Needed

  • A shovel or spade
  • An axe or hatchet
  • Enough water to fully extinguish your campfire

The Site

In the backcountry or where there is not a dedicated fire ring, use these instructions:

  • Make a circle about one metre around.
  • Dig or scrape down to the mineral soil.
  • Clear away any flammable materials within one metre of the pit.

Extinguish Your Campfire

Soak It. Stir It. Soak It Again.

  • Let the fire burn down before you plan on putting it out. Spread the embers within the fire pit, then add water or loose dirt, and stir.
  • Expose any material still burning. Add more water and stir again until you can no longer see smoke or steam. Do not bury your fire as the embers may continue to smoulder and can re-emerge as a wildfire.
  • Repeat until your campfire is cool to the touch.
  • If your fire is out, you should not be able to feel any heat from the ashes.

Updated: May 27, 2020