How to Bulid a Fire Pit

How to Bulid a Fire PitMany times campsites already have an existing fire pit or ring in which to build your campfire, so it's quite possible to be an experienced camper with no experience building a fire pit. Luckily, fire pits are easy to build and require just a little bit of planning and execution.


Difficulty: Moderate

Step 1
Find the right location. This is the most important part of building your fire pit because you probably don't want to start a forest fire. Find a flat spot that is out in the open; it should be 15 feet away from any trees, branches, tents, shrubs and other flammable objects. Most campsites are flat and cleared out, so this should not be a big problem. The site should also be downwind from your tent and firewood and protected from wind to prevent any embers from being blown around.
Step 2
Clear the surrounding area of your intended pit. Work within about a 5-foot radius, cleaning up all sticks, leaves, twigs and other flammable debris. Be aware of duff, which looks like soil but is actually decomposed wood and is flammable. Clear down to the dirt.
Step 3
Dig the pit about a foot into the ground using a shovel. Generally, a 2- to 3-foot diameter works well.
Step 4
Gather some large, dry rocks, and place them around the perimeter of your fire pit. Cover the gaps between rocks with smaller rocks or dirt.
Step 5
Prepare your fire. With your fire pit in place, you're ready to get that warm, mesmerizing campfire going safely.

Tips & Warnings

Always check with the authorities in your location on campfire rules. Some wilderness areas do not allow campfires at all, and dry, hazardous conditions may exist.
Use existing fire pits when available to limit impact.
Keep a bucket of water or dirt near the campfire.

Article Written By Joe Fletcher

Joe Fletcher has been a writer since 2002, starting his career in politics and legislation. He has written travel and outdoor recreation articles for a variety of print and online publications, including "Rocky Mountain Magazine" and "Bomb Snow." He received a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Rutgers College.

The Latest from the Community

Nice easy flat trail that leads to beautiful red rocks.
Stunning hike but extremely steep and tiring! Bring plenty of water.