The curious kid in me used to bug the adults with that question over and over whenever I see one. It simply fascinates me because the fire can do useful stuff like cook food and warm a chilly night. Hence, just how hot can it be?
Years have gone by since then, and I get now that the answer isn’t as easy as learning how to fold a tent. It depends on many aspects that make up the flames, so a single response can’t suffice. Stick around if you want to know more about it.
The Science Behind Campfires
Any kind of fire goes through a chemical change before it turns into that. Even the ones at campsites experience that until you have nothing else left but ashes.
When wood comes in contact with flame, however, it starts to heat up at a hundred degrees Celsius. Considering you only found that solid material in the grounds, the temperature can triple once it dries. That’s the time when the reaction produces gases that continuously combust with fire, thus increasing its hotness. The degree of heat can then rise to almost or more than 600 degrees Celsius.
Based on the aforementioned digits, the flames in a site can liquify aluminum. If you raise it further, it may melt silver too.
Meanwhile, saying that you can estimate how hot is a campfire through its color is debatable. Ideally, it follows the colors of a rainbow, with red being the coldest and white as the warmest. But the thing is, some campers believe that diverse factors affect the pigment.
3 Things That Keep The Fire Going
Whereas you need food, water and air to live, the bonfire requires oxygen, fuel, and a great weather.
Oxygen is essential for campfires to burn brightly. You get that from the wind or blowing air most often.
This is the reason why it’s important to fan the fire in the beginning. You have to intensify the amount of oxygen touching the flames so that the gases will combust more. Placing the scorching woods in a steel cylinder, however, helps you regulate the campfire and prevent it from becoming a blaze.
The readily combustible sources of thermal energy are in liquid form. In case you don’t want the smell of gasoline to hold onto your hair or clothes, just choose your woods well.
There are various wood options that burn at high temperatures, and you may get them on and off the internet. As a quick tip, however, remember that green woods don’t heat up a lot. Others like fir and willow kindle faster compared to pine as well, so they cannot reach an astounding level of hotness. What gives off much heat, according to a research of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, is a wood as hard as oak.
The timber should be dry for complete burning to take place; that’s why the weather has to be favorable. You can only achieve that when it’s less humid or there is little to no rain.
You need to ensure that because the amount of moisture that nature delivers can slow down the heat’s escalation. It won’t just work around the dampness; the fire will have to dehydrate the woods each time. The result is that they continue to burn but at a lower temperature.
Hot Or Not, How To Stay Safe Around A Campfire?
1. Keep It Low.
By that word, I mean to remind you to get the fuel as close to the ground as possible. The height of the fire should only be a foot and a half tall at most. Higher than that and you may have to extinguish it before the flame licks the hanging tree branches.
2. It’s Valuable – Try Not To Leave It Alone.
3. Prepare Your Fire-Eliminating Items.
It’s bad to always become a pessimist, but still have shovel and water ready when you have a campfire. You don’t know when the wind will change its speed and strength, so you need the right fire-eliminating tools ready.
How Hot Is A Campfire?
From the ideas mentioned above, how hot is a campfire is determined by the materials you use to make it. Some woods burn fast, while others take time to fully combust. Nevertheless, you have to make sure that it cannot cause harm to anyone – not even yourself.
If you have further questions about campfires, don’t hesitate to leave it below.