How To Start A Campfire With Wet Wood?

When you are outdoors you will need a fire to warm yourself and cook the meals. How to start a campfire with wet wood?

starting a campfire

When all is soaked with water you will need to compromise and find a way to be successful.

Fire is important for your well-being. Not just at home, having it outdoors is even more important to stay warm and safe from the wild animals.

Check my tips that will help you start it without a hustle even when you don’t have anything dry to start it.

How to make a fire when everything is wet?

Did you intend to go camping for the weekend in the nearest mountains but it rained the whole night? The first thing that you could think of is how will you start a campfire with wood that is wet.

Building it after it rains can be challenging but here are tips that will make it burn and last long. With these useful tricks, you will start it without a hassle.

Necessary items to start a fire with wet wood

You want to make sure that you have all the necessities for a campfire before you go in nature. Get a fire starter like:

  • Flint
  • Waterproof matches
  • Fire steel rods
  • Magnesium fire starter kits or lighters

Make a fire starter with dryer lint at home

You can also make a fire starter with dryer lint at home so you will be making a campfire in no time. You can try a bow drill but it tends to be difficult to use for beginners.

You can help yourself with fuel to start it but it’s better to save it for other sources, such as lamps or fuel-burning camp stoves. I suggest you bring along a hatchet or an axe, or a large multi-tool with a good knife.

How to pick firewood for campfire?

You’ll need about three to four times the amount of wood as what you would normally need if the wood wasn’t wet. The same goes for kindling.

start a campfire with wet wood

Where can I find dry wood after it rains?

When you are looking for wood, pick up the drier pieces. Look inside natural hiding spots, such as inside bushes or inside logs.

However, be careful as you never know what’s inside – anything from a skunk to a nasty biting insect. Another great tip is to shave off the wet parts of the wood to get it dry.

Natural tinder material

Tinder is the basic fuel source for making it. It goes in the middle of it – it’s the fire’s starting place and core. Pick the driest, fastest burning fuel sources you can find, such as small twigs, wood shavings, wood chips, and dry bark.

What makes the best tinder?

Pine is a very good tinder as the needles and sap are very flammable. Also, use other sources such as paper, or peeling the bark off of fallen, dead birch trees into paper-like strips.

Another common tactic is to use your knife to shave off the end of a stick but leave each piece attached. The result is a conglomeration of fuzzy, thin papery pulp on a single end of the stick, which is perfect for tinder.


Other tinder ideas

A magnesium strip, tiny pile, paraffin wax, and Dorito chips are good fire starters as well.

What can be used as kindling?

Kindling is the next part of the fire that is a middle layer, after the tinder. Get sticks and twigs, but no wider than your forearm. Include some dry wood if you can to help get the fire out of its tinder phase.

Get wood logs

The final part of the fire goes around the kindling, the logs that will make your campfire last long and give you the heat you need. Beware of putting too big and wet pieces of fuel on tiny flames because you can put it out.

Start your campfire on dry ground

Wet and cold ground is not the best for starting a fire, especially when working with wet wood. So, find something dry to start it on, such as a rock. Another idea is to put down a large piece of wood, and then build it on top of that.

You can also lift your tent off the ground to camp more comfortably.

How to build a campfire?

Once you have all of your wood and fuel, it’s time to start building it. Follow the procedure so it will keep you warm for a long time.

a campfire burning

First, assemble the tinder in a sort of pyramid shape. Second, assemble the kindling around that, like a protective cage.

The goal isn’t to completely bury or cover up the kindling, but rather to build around it, like a Native American teepee.

Basically, it’s a fire screen designed to let the fire breathe and grow. After that, put a few log pieces around it.

Once your wood is all properly leaned together like a concentric upwards pointing cone, it’s time to light it.

You’ll want to ignite the center part of your fire fuel structure, where the tinder is. Use any fire starter source that you have, from a lighter to flint.

How to maintain the campfire?

Be careful and build it slowly. If it’s a very small fire then it can’t handle a massive tree-sized log. As it burns, you can place some of your wet fuel nearby the fire so the heat will dry it out.

How do you keep wood dry when camping?

If you will camp on a location for some time you can gather the wet woods and place them on a lifted platform of some kind and put a tarp over them so they can dry.

This method won’t make your firewood dry but will help you so the fuel won’t absorb the moisture further on.

Another technique that helps to dry wood is to put them close to your campfire as the heat will make them drier than they were.

In worst cases, you can put it inside the tent (if you have space) or in the car’s trunk.

What can you do to successfully start a campfire?

Put some rocks underneath the campfire so firewood won’t be on the wet ground. Gather some firewood that is as dry as possible.

Collect it and bring it to the camping location. Grab a knife and make some smaller sticks and kidling that is essential to build a fire.

campfire with wet wood tricks

Prepare the firewood

Before you even light the campfire it is important that you gather the smaller and larges pieces of firewood. Why is this important?

If you will light kidling but won’t have anything to put on then it will burn out fast and you will stay empty-handed.

So, go ahead and pick some fire logs, sticks, make kidling, and prepare matches or a lighter to fire up the kidling.

Make some kidling

Wood shavings are crucial to start a fire so make sure you have made enough to be successful.

Forget about the newspaper as it doesn’t have much substance to it so it won’t help you to light the wood. If you succeed to light the wood shavings then you are a good way to go.

Put sticks on

When you have enough kidling lighted it is time to add small sticks on. Sticks should be small-sized and thin.

Put them on so there will be some space between them. This way the air will have a clear path to help you light the fire.

Put fire logs on

When you see that you have some material burning you can slowly put some logs on. Start with smaller logs and add bigger ones after time.

campfire with wet logs

Start a fire after a rain like a pro

It is necessary to be prepared for any condition you face outdoors. Now that you know how to start a campfire with wet wood, you can be calm as it will protect you and give you the heat you need.

Consider my tips and you will have a nice burning campfire that will last for hours.

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