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Campfires

Are fires allowed at Recreation Sites? >>

Yes, fires are allowed at recreation sites. Fire bans and restrictions in BC vary depending on local or regional conditions and can be updated anytime by the provincial wildfire office. To find out the latest fire conditions consult the webpage of the British Columbia Wildfire Service or the alerts, closures and warnings webpage of Recreation Sites and Trails BC. For more information, read the article Wildfire Conditions & Campfire Bans.

Are there regulations on the size of a campfire? >>

Under provincial regulations, campfires (the burning area) cannot be larger than 0.5 m x 0.5 m or 1.5 ft x 1.5 ft. For a detailed list of campfire rules read the article Campfires in British Columbia

How can I make a fire-ring if there isn’t one? >>

First and foremost, check local regulations, current fire bans and the campground where you are staying to see if they allow campfires. When permission is granted, proceed by digging a hole 1 foot deep in the ground and 1.5 feet in circumference. Be sure to clear all debris a minimum of 3 feet around the hole. Build up a ring of rocks around the hole, leaving a small opening at the base of the rock ring for ventilation to your campfire.

How do you build a campfire? >>

After ensuring that there are no fire bans, begin by building the campfire inside a designated fire pit or makeshift ring to protect the surrounding area from the danger of fire spread. The key to a successful and safe campfire is to start small and gradually build it bigger so it remains contained at a controlled rate of burn. For detailed information, read the article How to Build a Campfire in our Tips’ section.

How do I know when the fire is ready to cook on? >>

Depending on weather conditions and the fire itself, a new campfire can take 30 to 45 minutes to burn down to a prime condition. Simply remember the phrase “low flames are for boiling and coals are for broiling”. Some campers set aside coal from the fire on the side of the pit and use this for roasting items (often in aluminum foil) versus open-flame broiling.

What can I cook on a campfire? >>

Main dishes, stews, soups and casseroles are some of what you can cook on a campfire. One of the most important campfire cooking tips is to keep it simple. Dutch ovens (heavy duty pots with lids) are versatile and can be used for roasting, braising, steaming and baking foods and aluminum foil is great for ‘carryover cooking’; simply remove the wrapped items from the grill or heat and let them finish accordingly. For recipe ideas visit our camping recipes page.

What can I burn in my campfire? >>

Purchase wood from the campground operator or a local store that has been cut and dried properly for campfire use. Do not use underbrush, twigs/sticks, moss or fallen trees for burning as these are essential to and home to wildlife and part of the local ecosystem; do not burn garbage as this may attract wildlife and cause toxic fumes. For more information on campfire materials read the article How to Build a Campfire.

What is the best way to extinguish a campfire? >>

Since embers can easily re-ignite, put a campfire out by stirring water carefully into the ashes until all embers are extinguished. TIP: If it’s too hot to touch, it’s too hot to leave.

In the event of a campfire ban, can I use anything else to keep warm? >>

Yes, you can use an approved propane campfire in a can or cooking source such as a propane stove or heater. Check with the campground first as rules may vary depending whether the site is private or publicly run and treat these heat sources in the same manner you would any other flammable item – never leave them unattended. For other options during campfire restrictions read the article Campfires in British Columbia.

How do I report a bush fire or forest fire? >>

To report a wildfire, call toll-free 1 (800) 663 5555 OR *5555 from most cellular networks. The official BC Wildfire Service mobile app can be downloaded for free.

Are fire permits required for campfires? >>

Some campgrounds, such as those located in national parks, do require a permit for a campfire. Campers should check with the campground office or staff or read the campground notice board prior to starting a fire.




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