It just wouldn’t be camping without a nice fire to sit around when it gets dark or to cook on but what is the easiest way to start a campfire.
There are many types of fire starters to take camping and each have their good and bad points.
The manual types like Flint Steel and Magnesium will make hundreds of fires from a single kit but do require reasonable weather to be used properly and a little bit of skill and practice to start a fire.
Other options are storm proof matches and special fire lighting kits that give you treated material that burns easily to help when making a fire.
The Easy Way
By far the quickest way to start a fire is by using some kind of accelerant like petrol or gas lighter fluid. Personally I don’t like using petrol as its a problem carrying it when hiking and can be dangerous on very hot days. Lighter fluid comes in nice handy size containers that can be safety put into the pack without fear of it spilling out on to your belongings.
Lighter fluid evaporates quickly and the best way to use it is to lay a few sheets of paper on the ground, spray lighter fluid all over and fold or roll the paper quickly to slow down the lighter fluids evaporation.
Even though you have folded the paper the lighter fluid will still evaporate eventuality so quickly place it under the campfire and light it. Be WARNED that when you set fire to the lighter fluid there will be a brief tall flame and its best to get down low and light fire at arms length using a long piece of lighted paper (remember eyebrows burn very quickly).
A little Patience
If things don’t start burning first time because of damp wood repeat the process until the wood catches light, DO NOT be tempted to pour lighter fluid directly on the fire as this could cause a huge fireball (have I already mentioned the eyebrows?).
If at the end of making a fire you have any lighter fluid left make sure it is stored far away from the fire so there is no possibility of it catching fire and exploding.
Distractions while starting a fire this way are the last thing you need so tell others to leave you alone and keep out of the way until your finished. Also clear the area around the fire of anything not needed to do the job of getting the fire going to prevent possessions being damaged.
I know most of this safety information is basic common sense but if I told you to use a flammable liquid and didn’t point out the dangers that would make me a little irresponsible.