Singing songs and telling stories with your favorite people is one of the best things about bonfires.
Undoubtedly, there has been a strong connection of campfire with human nature, as the activity is thousands of decades-old, yet people of this era love to repeat it again and again.
However, if you are concerned about how hot does a campfire get?
You are in the right place.
Here you will not only find your answer, but you will also be driven comprehensively on this topic. So! Stay focused because you are about to learn many important things.
A Little Science and History behind the Campfire
Yes! Everyone knows what a campfire is, but only some people have the basic knowledge behind its science. When you begin the campfire, the heat you feel from the flames is called the thermal energy.
In the ancient setting, this energy was meant to save people from extreme cold, and danger. Also, it helped them in cooking food. On the contrary, in the modern era, a campfire is occasionally celebrated, but it has similar benefits and impact over people.
Campfires, if made in the natural circumstances, require oxygen and fuel (wood). However, the latest equipment has minimized a lot of effort, as you have matchsticks and other fire lighting instruments.
On the other hand, people of the Stone Age didn’t have such facilities, so they discovered fire by striking stones with each other. You can also try this same method, but that would take a lot of time. Therefore, it is better to follow the scientific instructions to make sure you can enjoy all the boons from your campfire.
How Hot A Campfire Usually Is?
Many people think that campfires are just not strong enough to burn anything down. Believe it or not, but that’s a misconception. You can imagine the heat of a campfire by knowing that it could effortlessly melt aluminum and several other metals if it has achieved its medium temperature level.
The melting point of aluminum is 660.3 degrees Celsius, and it’s no big deal for a campfire to liquefy it. And even solid elements like lead, tin, cadmium, and antimony cannot stand the fervor coming out of those burning woods, regardless of climate.
So, after gathering all the facts and figures, it is concluded that the highest temperature a campfire could get is around 1000 to 1100 degrees Celsius. Nevertheless, it also depends on several forces, which leads the hotness of a bonfire to its peak.
Factors Responsible for Campfire Hotness
There are three basic things, which help a campfire reach their maximum level of temperature. These factors are linked to one another, and their combination is known as the fire triangle (heat, oxygen, and fuel).
But to assure you get every point accurately, the topic on the fire triangle is holistically discussed practically to make sure you get magnificent results, and your camping becomes an unforgettable one.
So let’s begin with wood (fuel), atmosphere (oxygen), and fire igniting instruments (heat).
Wood – Types and Sizes
You must be thinking why even this point has been included here because camping and lighting up the place without wood is so unobvious. For sure, it is, but do you know not every wood you gather can help you achieve your purpose.
Despite several types, the best wood kinds you must have with you are oak, cedar, hickory, and ash. These four types of wood are best to begin the campfire. These can be found around the place you have been camping, or they could be provided by the organizers. However, it is always good to arrange them in advance to ensure your trip is not ruined.
The next important thing is the size of the wood. You should keep in mind that you don’t set big pieces, as they may not catch the fire instantly. Therefore, it is better to go with the ‘tinder’ size.
Remember! A smaller piece of wood means greater chances of catching the fire. So, it is always recommended to keep tinder wood on the base, and include medium-size (kindling) once tinder wood has caught fire. Then add the big sized wood (fuelwood) later, as they will help in sustaining the fire for a long time.
When it comes to the atmosphere, the first thing that may strike your mind is a beautiful, friendly, and highly-sociable vision, right?
Of course! Camping is all about that stuff, but as here, the atmosphere is referred to as the oxygen. And without this factor, burning the wood is nothing but a myth. Usually, the air you breath includes approximately 21% of oxygen, and this is why the humans can live, walk, talk, and perform all their activities.
So, do you know what quantity of oxygen is required to begin a campfire? The answer to this question is 16%. Most of the fires only need that much amount to burn the entire content (wood).
So, this means that if your location is open, with a lot of trees and greenery in the nearby, then you can easily light the fire and enjoy your camping with more hotness. Oxygen is a great supporter of the ‘oxidation’ process, and this is why it is an essential factor for a campfire.
However, it is also not recommended to have a bonfire in an isolated location, as it may cause suffocation, which can be harmful.
Heat is the final ingredient without which the two factors are of no use. Imagine, you have placed the wood, and the atmosphere is also great for a campfire, but you forget the matchstick, or lighter, or any other igniting instrument.
Also, you don’t have gemstones in your surroundings to burn the kindling by striking the stones together. So, would you be able to start a fire? No! Because won’t be having any accessory that could produce heat.
Therefore, if the source of heat is lacking, then the ‘fire triangle’ is incomplete. So whenever you plan for a campfire, then make sure you have packed all the basic tools and instruments.
When heat, fuel, wood, are combined, the fire will be the end product. Moreover, the abundance of these elements ensures the high temperature of the fire, especially it comes to the fuel (wood).
Controlling the Campfire Heat
You have surely learned enough theory to produce great fire on your camping, but shouldn’t you be learning to control the campfire? Sometimes you need to regulate the campfire hotness for the sake of the unburned marshmallows, or excessive cold.
For sure, you would not favor burned BBQ, in the same way; you would not like a runny nose on a campfire night. So here’s what you need to do to supervise fire.
To Maximize Fire
If you think that your campfire is not hot enough for surviving the cold starry night, then carefully add the fuelwood (a type of wood discussed in the previous section) into the flames. The pieces of wood will increase the fire, so if you need more fire, then you have to add more fuelwood.
However, if your campfire has recently started, then it will take time to achieve the maximum level of heat, therefore, it is better to stay calm and wait.
To Minimize Fire
Planning to pour water on the burning wood? Not a good idea at all. Just don’t get panic if you can feel excessive heat because you can minimize the intensity. What you need to do is to remove the large pieces of wood by carefully using the log grabber. Don’t burn your hand while you are doing it.
Once done, you will see that the fire will get to reduce. Bingo! You have achieved your goal. But wait! You are not done yet. What about the burning pieces of wood you have separated from the campfire? Don’t ruin them by throwing water. Just keep them at a fair distance because you would be wanting those again later.
Benefits of Hot Campfire
Campfires are great in providing psychological and physical satisfaction. Also, it’s a magnificent way to remain entertained the entire night. So! Here are some boons of a hot campfire.
Source of Light
If you want your camping to be exciting, then you need to do it in the wild. Surely, camping has several benefits, and the most authentic one is making the place bright. Now it is not only for fun, but hot campfire leads to increased illumination, which saves you from several mishaps, such as, wild animal attacks.
The hotter the campfire the lesser the chance of any beast to even think of coming to ruin your camping because they are afraid of fire. So, you can assume it as a lethal weapon.
Feeling warm even when the temperature is too cold is super amazing, but this can only happen if your campfire is really into good flames. Besides, it saves you from getting flu, cough, or fever due to chilly clime. And the best thing about a fiery campfire is that even in the freezing weather, it can always keep you warmhearted.
Cooking & Entertainment
Camping without live cooking! Does that even sound like camping? You need to make sure that you have a live cooking scene when it comes to campfire because, without its presence, your entire plan would be a failure.
Let the smoke of the wood melts down into the steak that you cook on the hot campfire, so with every bite, you feel the taste that takes you out of this world.
There are several other things you can cook on a hot campfire using the grill grates, like soup, hot dogs, kebabs… Oh, you name it! These are not only for the purpose of filling your tummy but even its more than entertainment for the entire group.
Tricks for a Hot Campfire
Here is a brief step-by-step guide to help you set a high-flamed campfire:
Step# 1: Choose a Place
So, you are finally on the camping location, and now as you have made peace with all your gears, it is time for you to pick a safe spot for the campfire. By taking care of all the factors mentioned previously in this article, you will need to look for a place where people could sit around without hurting themselves.
It is also vital to see that no branches of any tree are above the spot because they can spread the fire, which could be dangerous for humans, as well as, animals and birds. Try to find a place that is open, more spacey, and has nothing in between the area and skies.
Step # 2: Settle the Wood
Once you have selected the place, it’s time for making a bed of wood. Place the tinder woods and burn them, once they catch fire, now place the kindling one by one. When you see that fire has taken over all the wood, it is time to add the large pieces.
Be very specific when adding the fuelwood because if the fire is not too hot, then adding bigger pieces could be of no use. So be patient and take your time to fill the spot.
Step # 3: Burning the Wood
As you have settled the wood, you need something that could start the fire. You have already picked a great kind of wood, which is a fuel itself. Nevertheless, you need an instrument, such as a matchstick. So, begin by burning the tinder with a matchstick or a lighter. However, you can also use a camping stove if you want quick results.
A campfire is hot enough to melt several solid objects, such as aluminum and cadmium. Increased fire not only helps in cooking great meals but also keeps everyone warm on the camping site.
Moreover, it is a great way to get protection from body cold, and wild animals. And starting a hot campfire is a piece of cake if you know the right tricks. So, happy camping!