Winter is knocking at our doors, and it won’t be long before we take out the winter jackets from the bottom of our drawers and the back of our closets, and we’ll be out hunting for Christmas gift offers. But before any that happens, we need to make sure that our houses are warm for the upcoming winter. Some people have the tremendous benefit of owning a yard, and, contrary to what some people may think, yards too can be a cozy spot to spend time in even during the colder season. If you have a fire pit, that is. For those of you that own a yard, we have some amazing winter fire pit ideas that will give you the chance to try a different kind of recreation these holidays.
The Best Fire Pit Ideas for Winter
Log and Stump Fire Pit Seating Area
Credit: Alicia Sterling Kleppin
If you have a fire put outside in your backyard and a few logs to spare, you can create a magical space where the entire family can gather around, tell stories, and cook s’mores. Logs can be repurposed, or they can be bought. Alternatively, you can repurpose wooden crates or pallets, or whatever other pieces of wood would make a comfortable seating space for at least a couple of hours.
Snow Fort Fire Pit
Credit: Serenity Health
If your family is ready to embrace this winter’s snow and are willing to put some elbow grease into constructing a snow fort, that could make quite the magical place for the entire family to spend some time outdoors despite the low temperatures. This creative idea is perfect for families of at least four members, where everyone can pitch in to make this project happen. It seems like such a wonderful place to gather around and share some family moments and even take some awesome pictures.
Swing-Bench Fire Pit Seating
If you want something a little more comfortable than logs and stumps while enjoying a winter fire pit, how about opting for wooden swings? Ensure that these are constructed to withstand low temperatures and the moisture coming from the snow won’t damage them. This is a great idea for year-round firepit fun, as well.
European Flair: Sunken Seating in the Woods
Credit: ShouShu Liu
Nothing beats the winter scenery one gets to enjoy in Switzerland, so maybe you can draw inspiration for this winter outdoor seating from the Chedi Andermatt Resort. The comfortable cushions and throw pillows are placed on the stone edges surrounding a fire pit in a setup that seems torn from a family Christmas movie. While you probably won’t need all those seats in your backyard, you can improvise something similar with paving stones, patio seating, and a DIY flat-topped wall.
Woodpile Cabin Fire Pit
By far, this is one of our favorite ideas in this list because it is so ingenious and makes such good use of the outdoor space you have around your home. If you have a heating system that uses wood as fuel, you probably have wood piles. What if you used all these logs to create a cabin-like concept where you could put a fire pit in the middle and enjoy a very cozy spot that could keep you shielded and warm even when spending time outside in the winter?
Patio Caldera Fire Pit
If you’re not yet the proud owner of a fire pit, but you do own a patio, why not install a fire pit right on the patio? This way, you could enjoy spending time outside next to the fire even when the snow has settled in. You won’t have to wipe the seats clean every time, and the gentle snowflakes won’t bother you while you’re sipping on a cup of hot cocoa, enjoying the roaring fire, and looking at nature’s beautiful white coat.
Simple Winter Fire Pit
If you think that having a fire pit is an idea that’s way too complicated or way too expensive, what if we told you it’s super-easy to make it happen as long as you’re willing to get some basic materials and dig a hole into the ground? There are plenty of tutorials that will show you just how easy it is to make your winter fire pit on a budget, and one that’s perfect to use even when snow melts and summer nights are perfect for spending time outdoors.
Fire Pit on a Budget
Let’s assume that you lack the budget, the time, or the energy to make your winter fire pit. Here is another ingenious idea that might still help you enjoy this outdoor setup with the family: use your coal-fueled barbecue as a fire pit. You can take advantage of a barbecue’s heatproof construction to set some wood on fire and place some chairs around this improvised fire pit. It’s easy as 1 – 2 – 3!
Winter Wonderland Fire Pit
Credit: Rockland Supplies
If you truly want to create the outdoor dream setup that will draw the entire family together during the cold season, remember that decorative outdoor lights can go a long way in helping you create an outdoor winter wonderland. Make sure that you’re as generous as possible with your outdoor lights and decorate as many elements around the fire pit as you can. It will be a delight to be outside for children and adults alike.
Winter Fire Pit FAQ
Having questions about the purpose or the efficiency of a fire pit during the winter is only natural. We’ve answered some of the most common questions that people have related to the topic here. We promise, this gathering-around-the-fire-pit-in-December idea is a good one.
Do fire pits keep you warm?
Yes, but how they keep you warm will depend on the type of fire pit you have. For example, some pits will warm you up because of the heat-emitting flame—such as open fire grill pits or simple hole pits—while others will keep you warm because of the materials that retain the heat and radiate it—such as brick, concrete, pavers stones, etc. Those extra degrees can keep you warm and toasty.
How do I get more heat from my fire pit in winter?
It depends on what type of fire pit you have. Let’s assume that your fire pit requires burning wood to generate heat. If you want the pit to give out more heat, you can experiment with different firewood types. Softwood is typically better for starting a fire, and they tend to give out more heat than hardwoods. You should also make sure that you’re using dry wood all the time when starting a fire. Increasing the surface area can also help because it allows more oxygen to reach the fire.
Do I need a cover for my fire pit during the winter?
Yes, because a cover can shield the fire pit from many different things during the winter. First and foremost, a cover prevents moisture build-up, which can lead to equipment corrosion. This is especially true if you have metal fire pits. It will then be so much easier to clean the fire pit once the snow has melted because you won’t end up discovering piles of debris inside your pit. A cover will keep it all out. You should also consider that some fire pits make perfect shelters for rodents, and you don’t want yours to end up being a home for critters.
Even if you don’t own a fire pit, there is always the possibility to make one yourself (making sure that you follow all the safety precautions). It can provide you with plenty of memorable family moments in a world dominated by technology that leaves us spending too much time in front of screens and less time bonding in the great outdoors. Despite low temperatures, you can still enjoy time outside if you have a fire source to keep you warm. If you’re not ready to take the chances of starting a bonfire in your yard, then a fire pit is a wonderful idea and, with a little bit of imagination, you can create a setup so fine that your family will be asking if you guys can stay outside for a while longer.