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Campfire Alternatives

From Leave No Trace

Stewardship Tuesday, May 7, 2024

We are about to blow your outdoors-loving world.


You can have fun camping WITHOUT A CAMPFIRE.

Yes, we mean it. And, for the record, Leave No Trace is not anti-campfire. We, too, grew up roasting s’mores and hot dogs over campfires; that is, if by roasting, you mean burning into oblivion. We’ve strummed guitars and had deep (okay,“deep”) discussions by flickering flames.

So we’re not anti-campfire. What we are is pro-responsible campfire and, sometimes, that means choosing to go fire-free. Maybe there’s not enough fuel to make a fire without destroying vital habitat or food sources for wildlife. Or maybe we don’t have enough water to make “campfire soup” to totally extinguish our fire.

Or maybe there’s a fire ban because the risk of wildfire is high or the local ecology is too sensitive to sustain what can end up being thousands of campfires.

“But how will I cook and stay warm? And see? And have any fun at all? AND scare away big, bad  campfire-averse animals?” We know, you’ve got questions.

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