Quest for Fire

That is your favourite time at the fire? What makes the campfire the best place in world for you?

Perhaps I am being a bit presumptuous in assuming that the fire holds the same allure for you as it does for me … but it does, doesn’t it?

Is it the Moment of Ignition? Watching as the young glint of flame is given birth and begins to feed all on its own – first taking the smaller, weaker kindling, then beginning to lick harmlessly (for now) at the larger fuel.

It balances precariously on the brink of extinguishment before finally taking hold. Now you can back off, allowing your creation to find her own direction.

Is it the Grand Roaring Blaze? The one that causes everyone around the fire to shift position, to move back a metre or two to avoid the excess heat blasted from the raging furnace as it transforms inert logs into something alive, something straight out of a Bruce Willis epic.

Perhaps, for you, the appeal of the fire lies in the Sweet Spot – that one special hollow in the flames and coals that will put the perfect shade of brown on all sides of the marshmallow, and will cook the smokie evenly from one end to the other.

Or is it the Bacon Grease Inferno? I do it just for kids of course. They love the deep, dark red flame that would leap dangerously close to surrounding trees if I hadn’t already checked carefully to ensure a safe clearance.

I’m certain of two things: first, that I am not the only one to do this; second, that the Bacon Grease Inferno is responsible for most of the misshapen fire pits across the Yukon and beyond.

Later, there is the irresistible allure of the Glowing Embers. The dancing red and black bed of coals as the last of the campers hang on into the evening, waiting for the fire to wane to a safe stage before retiring for the night.

But right now, as I sit recording these thoughts on my BlackBerry, the fire under the coffee percolator is my favourite campfire time – waiting in eager anticipation for the lively jump of the dark liquid life to show itself.

Whatever your favourite time at the fire, isn’t fire like nothing else at the campsite?

A comfortable tent. Good companions. Great outdoor food. A staggering view. A comfortable seat. All pale in comparison to the company of warm fire.

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