Camping is one of the most enjoyable things as there’s nothing quite like enjoying the excellent outdoors with a roaring fire, soft and gooey smores, and a beautiful night sky full of stars. However, keep in mind that a wonderful campfire is a huge responsibility.
You should know that camping, barbecues, and caravanning in Tennessee all pose fire hazards and risks, which can easily destroy areas of gorgeous countryside and delicate ecosystems.
Did you know that 95% of wildfires and forest fires are caused by people? The good news is that they can also be prevented by people. Whether traveling, camping, or recreating, everyone in Tennessee must take forest fire prevention seriously. Most wildfires in Tennessee result from campfires, fireworks, vehicles and unsecured chains, and firearms.
Did you know that wildfires and forest fires burned more than ten million acres in the US during the 2020 season because of various reasons, such as drought, high winds, and high temperatures? In March 2022, a wildfire near Great Smoky Mountains National Park impacted 100 structures and spread to almost 4,000 acres.
As you start to spend more time outdoors, it is vital to pay attention to your surroundings with forest fires in mind.
Tips to Prevent Forest Fires
Here are some tips on preventing wildfires and forest fires.
Clear the Area
Once you have found a good location for your campsite, you should clear out a ten to 15-foot circular area. And always try your best to be downwind from various hazards and your gear and tent. Note that you can never be sure about the wind, and if it is gusty, it is best to consider a sheltered spot.
Never Start a Campfire Near Dry Leaves or Grass
Camping is an excellent leisure activity in Tennessee, particularly for your family. However, if you camp in some remote area with dry grass and leaves, you are likely to accidentally start a fire and even burn up your whole campsite.
You should take advantage of available resources and guides that can give you valuable information months ahead of your trip as well as immediately before you travel.
Keep it Small
You don’t need huge campfires. Although fun and exciting, they can be dangerous and disastrous if not impeccably watched and maintained. Smaller fires are always safer, and you do not need a huge fire in order to cook or provide warmth.
Keep Fires in Fire Rings
While it may seem obvious, it’s always a good reminder. It is best to use designated fire rings for the campfire at campgrounds that offer them. On the other hand, if you’re camping at a site without any fire ring, you should build one correctly.
- You should carry a reliable fire extinguisher in your vehicle and learn to use it carefully.
- Refrain from driving your vehicle on dry grass or brush. This is because hot mufflers and exhaust pipes can start fires that you will not even see—until it is too late!
- It is important to practice safe towing. Keep in mind that dragging chains throw sparks. You should use an appropriate hitch ball and safety pins to secure chains.
Use an Electric Cooker
There is no doubt that cooking over the campfire is fun and exciting when the circumstances are right. You should consider who you’re camping with. If kids and pets are involved, decide whether this method of meal preparation is the best one for your trip. Note that when things get hectic and out of control, food may get tossed around, causing burns.
A simple solution is to use an electric burner. You can bring one on your trip. This is simple and prevents any potential fire risks and hazards.
Barbecue Safety during Camping
To barbecue safely with your friends or family and avoid injuries and damage to property, please follow these tips:
- Make sure that your BBQ site is flat and away from trees, fences, shrubs, and sheds
- Always keep a garden hose or a bucket of water nearby in case of emergencies
- Don’t use petrol or paraffin to revive or start your barbecue – it is best to use firelighters
- Keep pets and children away from the cooking area
- Never leave the BBQ unattended
Know the Fire Safety Rules
You should be mindful of what you are doing and be prepared and ready to put out a fire. Also, follow fire safety rules to stay safe:
- Only start your campfire in an approved pit and never leave a campfire unattended. Always make sure that a campfire is extinguished completely.
- Keep matches and lighters out of the reach of children.
- Do not start a fire on a windy day.
- Remove all twigs, leaves, and other flammable materials from the area around where you are planning to light your campfire.
- Never start a campfire when it is windy.
- Launch fireworks safely and on legal dates and in areas that allow fireworks to be launched.
Other Forest Fire Prevention Considerations
Don’t discard or dispose of smoking materials from your vehicles or when camping, hiking, or boating. You should always use interior ashtrays. Keep in mind that motorized vehicles, especially All-Terrain Vehicles and dirt bikes, can easily produce a considerable amount of heat from the exhaust system.
And this heat is often enough to spark a raging wildfire. It is best to avoid operating motorized vehicles in tall grass and vegetation, especially when the weather is dry and hot.
Do your part to keep the Smoky Mountains and nearby areas safe by keeping these tips and tricks in mind before leaving home and on the trail to make for a fun and enjoyable outdoor experience.
Where to Stay
If you are looking to stay in the Smoky Mountains during the holidays, you can head to the beautiful and serene cabins in the region, such as Rosedale Mountain Retreat. Ideal for family reunions, special occasion celebrations, and corporate retreats, our fully-furnished suites combine a comfortable and relaxing residential setting with full access to various resort amenities at your disposal. You can simply decompress and unwind from your hectic and busy life and easily sit in front of the fireplace, savoring a piping hot coffee or tea.
Our cabin rentals in Tennessee feature unique amenities in order to keep everyone comfy and entertained, from king-size beds to a home theater. Camping at Rosedale Mountain Retreat offers a memorable and fun adventure you are unlikely to find with other accommodations.
We also offer several other amenities and different activities you can participate in while staying with us during your ATV vacation. So, contact us to learn more and reserve excellent lodging to have a memorable getaway in Tennessee.