Best Portable Propane Fire Pit For Camping in 2017
You're going camping! Nothing says 'camping' like a good old-fashioned campfire. The smells, the sounds of the logs popping in the flame, and watching the coals glow and dance. Not everyone agrees about the benefits of wood fires.
Take the founders of this website, Kelly, and Marshall. Kelly loves campfires. Marshall, not so much. (Spoilsport!) What Marshall needs is a fake campfire 'in a can' so to speak. Luckily, these things do exist!
Sometimes, campfires are not ideal for a variety of reasons:
- You don't like smelling like smoke the next day
- You don't want to have to find a constant supply of firewood
- The firewood gets too expensive
- Some states prohibit carrying firewood from state to state
- If there's a fire ban, you can't have a wood fire
- Some campgrounds prohibit having wood fires.
There is one perfect solution for each of these scenarios:
A portable fire pit for camping! A campfire in a can, so to speak.
Comparing the Best Portable Fire Pits
Portable Fire Pit Reviews
There are lots of good choices out there! Some are better than others for certain needs so we reviewed for best overall, runner-up, and best on a budget. Here you go:
Guide to Portable Propane Fire Pits
There is nothing like a campfire when you are out camping. They are a great place to gather and be social with your family, or get to know new friends. But it isn't always practical to have a real fire (no wood, fire ban, don't like getting covered in smoke, etc.) which makes a small portable fire pit a great item to bring along with you to the campground.
The Benefits of a Portable Fire Pit for Camping
- Fire ANYWHERE! When a traditional wood fire just isn't in the mix due to a restriction or a lack of wood, the outdoor propane fire pit is the perfect alternative. These portable fire pits are usually compact, lightweight, easy to tote around and carry, easy to assemble and they give you the same benefits of a real fire.
- Having a Campfire In A Can Is Easy You can use portable fire pits where you otherwise cannot have a fire in parks and campgrounds that don't have fire pits or don't allow wood fires. You can save you back from lugging around firewood. Finding propane to use for your fuel is usually a very easy thing to find, and it's inexpensive.
- Total Control You have immediate control of the flame size and how much heat it puts out. Additionally, you can turn it off with a switch and it's off IMMEDIATELY. No more finding water to put over the flames and coals and trying to make sure it's out before bedtime.
- Shower Fresh Outdoor propane fire pits do not put out any smoke, so you don't have the smoky smelling hair and jackets the next day.
- Location Options They are so lightweight, you can put your portable propane fire pit anywhere you'd like. You don't have to rely on having your fire at the existing campfire ring at your site.
- Easy On, Easy Off Portable fire pits ignite easily. Some have an ignition switch. Others can be lit using a long-stem portable igniter. They usually have a 6-10 foot hose attached so you don't have to have the propane tank RIGHT there with you at the fire.
- End The Burn You don't have to worry about embers or hot ash getting on your clothes or chairs and burning a hole in them.
- Home And Camping Use Some portable fire pits are also safe for home use on your deck or patio area. These portable fake campfires insulate the bottom so that using a pit in these areas is safe. It makes a nice touch to a pool party or evening party in the backyard. S'mores, anyone?
Camp Addict Co-Founder
I absolutely LOVE my Big Red portable propane fire pit for camping! I've spent many a night socializing with friends around my little pit. I have even had people offer to buy it from me. (No way, Jose')
My little pit has always worked perfectly. It's lightweight and easy to carry around. There's no smoky smell or any other smell to contend with. I use it with my teeny tiny propane tank.
I must say, I wouldn't recommend getting a tiny tank to power it. My little 1 gallon propane tank only lasts a couple of hours, and that's if I have the heat on about medium or low. Either using a 20 lb tank or connecting the pit directly to your propane lines in your RV would be recommended.
THERE'S MORE?? (Yep!)
- Just Say No To Roaches/Bugs No more buying and/or storing wood for a camping fire pit. In southern states, you have roaches who love to make their homes in piles such as these. SO GROSS! No more worrying about breeding roaches/spiders/other bugs or dealing with them with your portable pit.
- No 'Fireworks' Sometimes your wood is wet, or just wet enough that it doesn't want to burn, or puts off a lot of sparks. You never have to worry about that with a camping fire pit.
- Quick Gratification With a portable propane pit, you get INSTANT HEAT! Now you don't have to wait around freezing while the fire gets hot. These camping fire pits provide instant heat as soon as the burner is lit.
- Chow Time Some of the fire pits even come with a cooktop so you can make your dinner over the fire.
Need we say more?
Portable Propane Fire Pit Designs and Features
Most of the propane fake campfire pits we have seen are circular in design. Some, like Camco's Big Red Campfire also have a lid that doubles as a carrying case and as a stand to put the campfire on top of to raise its height.
Most of the pits come with an 8-10 foot propane hose that you can attach to a small portable propane tank.
If they are easily accessible, you can connect your camping fire pit to your RV's tanks, or connect it to your propane outlet for a barbecue pit, but you might need an adapter. Also, keep in mind that this will limit where you can use the pit due to the length of your hose. The payoff is that you don't need an extra portable propane tank for your camping fire pit. The bummer is that you are now limited to where you can put your portable fire pit.
Now there are no 'no-fire' excuses. You now know that the next time you have an outing, solo or with friends/family, you can have a portable propane fire pit, or a 'fake campfire' if you will, to gather around when 'real' campfire options don't exist or are not your first pick.
Nothing says camping like a good fire. You will never miss out when you have your own portable fire pit.
Camp on, Addicts!