Gathering firewood for campfires can eat into your wallet, especially if you’re a frequent camper. Did you know that the average cost for a bundle of firewood at campsites hovers around $5 to $10? Luckily, this article is packed with tips and tricks for snagging inexpensive or even free firewood to fuel your outdoor adventures.
Keep reading—it’s easier than you think!
- Look for local wood sellers near campgrounds; they often sell firewood at lower prices than big stores.
- Ask friends and family if they know someone with extra wood, or visit online marketplaces like Facebook Marketplace for good deals.
- Check with local businesses, such as construction sites or cabinet shops, for free scrap wood that can be used as firewood.
- Home improvement stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot sell bulk firewood that’s ideal for camping, sometimes offering unseasoned wood at a discount.
- Use a small camping stove to save on firewood and plan your needs carefully—about two bundles per night should work for a moderate campfire.
Top 5 Places to Find Cheap Firewood for Camping
Venturing into the great outdoors doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune keeping warm by the campfire. Clever campers know there’s an array of spots to snag that all-important cheap firewood, and we’re lighting the way to five must-check locales for fueling your flames without burning through your wallet.
Local wood sellers near campgrounds
Campers often find the best deals on firewood right by their campsites. Local wood sellers usually set up shop near campgrounds, knowing that campers need wood for fires. These sellers offer bundles of wood at prices lower than big stores.
It’s a win-win situation: you get your cheap firewood, and they make a sale close to home.
Before heading out, look for local advertisements or signs pointing to these wood sellers. They might have seasoned wood ready to burn or green wood that’s cheaper but needs time to dry out.
Buying in larger quantities can lead to better deals, so consider pooling with fellow campers if you don’t need a lot yourself. This way, everyone enjoys the warmth of a fire without burning through their wallets!
Friends and family
Friends and family can be your secret weapon for finding cheap firewood. They might know someone with extra wood they’re willing to share or sell at a low cost. Plus, gathering wood together can turn into fun outings in national forests where collecting fallen timber is legal.
Just make sure you all respect the local ecosystem by not disturbing live trees and habitats.
You could also team up for a scavenger hunt after other campers leave their sites. Look for leftover pieces they didn’t use; just watch out for invasive species like the emerald ash borer or walnut twig beetle hitching a ride on your found wood.
And always check if collecting is okay — some places have rules against taking wood from certain areas to protect against bugs like the brown marmorated stink bug harming the woods.
Local businesses with scrap wood
Local businesses often toss out scrap wood. This could be your chance to grab some firewood for your camping trip. Look for places like construction sites or lumber yards. They may have leftovers they’re willing to give away or sell at a low price.
Some types of wood from these spots, like oak and ash trees, burn longer and hotter—perfect for campfires.
Carpenters and cabinet shops also end up with lots of extra wood pieces. Swing by and ask if they have any scraps you can take off their hands. Even though this might include softer woods or unseasoned lumber, it’s still good for a quick bonfire blaze or as kindling to start your fires.
Just make sure the wood is safe to burn—avoid any that’s been treated with chemicals.
Before heading online to check out marketplaces..
Online marketplaces are a hot spot for scoring cheap firewood. These platforms let you browse through various types and quantities of wood from the comfort of your home. Think Facebook Marketplace, where sellers post what they have on offer.
You might find someone local who’s just finished splitting wood and has too much on their hands.
The best part is comparing prices across different sellers without having to drive around town. Many sellers might even throw in delivery at a good price, making your camping prep way easier.
Once you’ve clicked purchase, you can focus on other trip details like gathering hardwoods for that perfect campfire or picking up a reliable fire starter from Home Depot.
Now, let’s consider how the cost of firewood can vary when planning your camping budget..
Home improvement stores
Moving from online options, let’s talk about a more traditional route—home improvement stores. They’re great spots to buy firewood in bulk for your camping trip. Places like Lowe’s or Home Depot offer cords or fractions of cords that you can stock up on.
Keep them in your backyard, shed, or garage until it’s time to hit the campsite. These stores often have harder woods that burn slower and give off more heat—perfect for those chilly nights under the stars.
At these home improvement giants, you might also find deals on unseasoned wood, which is less expensive than kiln-dried alternatives. Just remember that unseasoned wood needs time to dry out before you can use it effectively in a campfire.
You’ll avoid smoke problems and get better flames this way! And don’t worry about pests; these stores ensure their wood is clean and free from parasites, so nothing unwanted will tag along on your camping adventure.
Factors Affecting the Cost of Firewood for Camping
The price of firewood can swing up or down for several reasons. One major factor is the wood type; hardwoods like oak burn slowly and give off more heat, but they cost more than softer woods like pine.
Season also plays a big role – during winter months, everyone wants to stay warm, so firewood prices go up because demand is high. If you’re camping in a place far from where trees grow, expect to pay extra for transport costs.
Local laws are important, too; some areas have restrictions on moving firewood to prevent the spreading of tree diseases and pests, which can affect availability and price.
Another thing to keep in mind is how much wood you actually need. Buying in bulk often leads to better deals per bundle compared to getting small amounts as needed. However, don’t buy too much! Too much left-over wood becomes clutter or goes wasted if it’s not stored properly and gets wet or rots away before your next trip into the great outdoors.
Efficient Use of Firewood during Camping
Maximizing your firewood supply while camping isn’t just about finding the cheapest source—it’s also about using what you have wisely. Whether it’s mastering the art of a perfectly sized campfire or gauging how much wood you’ll actually need for the duration of your trip, there are strategies to make every log count..
Using a small camping stove
A small camping stove is a great tool for saving firewood. You use less wood, and your fire burns longer. Think about how much time you’ll be sitting by the campfire. This helps you figure out how many bundles of wood to get.
Bring a small stove on your trip to keep things simple. It makes cooking easier, too! Plus, it’s good for the environment because it cuts down on the amount of wood used. You’re doing your part to protect nature while enjoying the outdoors.
Quick Tip: See How to Use a Camping Stove.
Estimating the required amount
To figure out how much firewood you need, think about your camping trip. Plan to use about two bundles per night for a cozy campfire. Each bundle has 4-5 pieces that burn for 1-2 hours.
If you love big fires or want to keep the flames going longer into the night, grab an extra bundle just in case. Check the weather too – if it’s cold, you might need more wood to stay warm.
Remember this: A good rule is one bundle for cooking and another for chilling by the fire. Don’t overbuy; it’s not only costly but also a hassle to transport back home. Calculate wisely and enjoy those glorious flames without wasting money or wood!
Getting cheap firewood for camping doesn’t have to be hard work. Look around – local wood sellers, scrap piles at businesses, online deals, and nearby stores are all good spots. Remember to only take what you need and use the wood wisely.
Keep your fire small and burn it just long enough for warmth or cooking. With these tips, enjoy a cozy campfire without burning through your wallet!
Quick Tip: It’s good to know How To Make Fire With Sticks, just in case!
Where can I find cheap firewood for camping?
You might be surprised, but local tree trimmers or lumber yards often have deals on leftovers that are perfect for campfires. Keep an eye out, too – sometimes neighbors cut down trees and give away the wood for free!
Can I just pick up any wood I find in the woods while camping?
Hold up there! While it might seem easy to grab some fallen branches, many parks have rules against this to protect nature. Always check with park rangers first; they’ll tell you if it’s okay or where you can buy some at a reasonable price.
Are there any tricks to getting firewood without spending a lot of money?
Sure thing! Try searching online marketplaces – people often sell or even give away extra wood when they’ve got more than they need. Also, consider grabbing some friends for a group buy; sometimes, sellers will drop prices for a big purchase.
Is it better to get my firewood before the trip or at the campsite?
Good question! Buying your wood near your camping spot is usually smarter because it saves room in your car and helps prevent spreading tree diseases from one area to another – plus, campground stores know you want convenience, so they might have competitive prices too!