Get The Facts! How To Enjoy A Campfire During Fire Ban

We get it. Campfire ban season is no fun.You’ve had that camping or RVing trip planned since the Spring, and now, a fire ban is in place. What do you do?

Can you have a campfire during a fire ban?

campfire during fire ban

Well, a wood fire is out of the question. If you chance it, you’re going to end up getting a hefty fine, which is no fun, or worse, start a forest fire and potentially do some real damage. Better to err on the side of safety with this one.

Of course you still want to enjoy your time outdoors, but what options are there aside from a wood fire? Great news! Usually, unless conditions are extreme enough to warrant otherwise, the use of portable stoves or portable campfire apparatuses are allowed during fire restrictions, as long as they follow a few simple rules. This way, you can still get that authentic campfire experience, without compromising the forest around you.  Win/win for the forest and for you!

In order to be legal for use during fire restrictions, your portable campfire apparatus MUST follow 3 points:

  1. Burns liquid or gaseous fuel designed to provide ambiance and heat.
  2. Must be CSA or ULC approved (appropriate stickers or label must be on unit)
  3. Flame length must not exceed 15 centimeters / 6 inches

When using the campfire apparatus, you are required to:

  • ƒ Operate the apparatus as specified by the manufacturer
  • ƒ Take reasonable precautions to ensure the fire is contained
  • ƒ Take immediate action to carry out fire control and report the fire if it does escape
  • ƒ Turn the unit off when not attended

If a device is placed on the ground you must:

  • ƒ Place the unit on mineral, soil, gravel, sand or a non-combustible surface (many areas additionally require raised fire pits)
  • ƒ Maintain an adequate fire guard around the device, free of flammable materials.

Want to know more about current bans or restrictions near you? Visit the Fire Prohibitions and Area Restrictions page of the Ministry of Forests Wildfire Management Branch today!

campfire during fire ban

Keep in mind, you need to do your homework with this one. Many commercially available propane campfires are NOT CSA or ULC approved, and are not fully adjustable (remember, you have to be able to adjust the flame height to comply with the law). So it’s really important to do your homework when purchasing a portable propane campfire, to make sure it is appropriate to use during a fire ban. Ask LOTS of direct questions – otherwise you could very well could find yourself not allowed to use your new campfire.. even though you just bought it for the trip!

A very helpful resource to help you find the perfect portable propane campfire is Campfire Compare! This site has 11 of the top brands and looks at 10 features that you should consider when purchasing (such as the CSA/ULC approval), and is a great place to start doing your homework.


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