gifts they might actually want

The Best Gifts for Dads Who Like Fire, According to a Dad Who Likes Fire

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

Let me just get to the point: I’m a dad, I love a good fire, and I know many other dads who feel the same. I have used each and every single thing on this list. Much of it I own, other stuff I’ve tested, and some things I received as gifts. Which is why I am writing about them: Everything here is something a dad who likes fire will appreciate, whether his passion is starting one (at a campsite or in a fireplace), cooking over open flames, or just sitting around them to watch as they burn. From a tiny blowtorch, to extendable sticks for roasting marshmallows or hot dogs, to pine cones that emit colorful flames as they burn, read on for the best gifts to give a dad who likes fire on Father’s Day (June 20) or any day.

Finding the perfect stick for roasting marshmallows can be harder than you expect, especially if you’re not in the woods. The telescoping metal sticks in this set can extend up to 32 inches, and with two prongs at the end, neither hot dog nor marshmallow nor most anything else he might put on one will fall off. Plus, each has its own color-coded ring to make it easier to remember which belongs to whom if you’re using them in the dark.

These thick and hearty gloves can resist temperatures of up to 1,472 degrees Fahrenheit, yet they allow enough dexterity for Dad to flip burgers and do even more precise things, like slather on sauces or marinades. If he’s not a griller, they’ll also come in handy at the oven, while tending a fireplace, or even as protective gear for chopping wood.

Electricity, not combustible fuel, is what this nifty lighter uses to create heat. Said heat is so intense that it lights candles almost instantly and gets cardboard, paper, or a fire starter going in seconds. It’s even strong enough to ignite smaller pieces of kindling. And, conveniently, it can be recharged via (an included) USB cable.

Made of wood, wool, and wax, these fire starters burn hot and clean. They last for nearly ten minutes, which is plenty of time for Dad to get larger logs or a pile of charcoal going. You can get different sizes; they start at 30-piece bags and go up to boxes of 400.

It takes a bit more heat to get this Fatwood going, but once the sticks are ablaze, they are the ideal way to get larger logs crackling in a fireplace or a bonfire. That’s because the wood is infused with resin (not animal fat or chemicals), which helps it burn. This also comes in various sizes, starting with a 10-pound box and going up to one that’s 50 pounds.

If Dad gets mesmerized by simply watching open flames, he’ll love how these pine cones make them even more captivating. When he tosses one on a roaring fire, it’ll add vibrant greens and blues to the reds, yellows, and oranges dancing before him. The price shown is for a one-pound basket of the pine cones, but you can get them in various sizes up to a six-pound basket.

Whether he’s camping, backpacking, hiking, hunting, or just tending the backyard, any dad who spends time in the outdoors will appreciate this clever hand-operated chainsaw. The tool is perfect for sawing logs — Dad just needs to wrap the chain around a piece of wood and use a little elbow grease as he pulls it back and forth. It comes with a little magnesium rod and flint striker that, after a bit of practice, will help him have a blaze going in minutes.

Zippo lighters have been around for generations — and are the type of thing a fire-loving dad could eventually pass down to his fire-loving kids. Those looking for a more affordable option can’t go wrong with a classic chrome Zippo, but if you want to give Dad something more distinguished, they don’t get more handsome than one of the brand’s wood-paneled models.

After he hooks it onto a can of propane from a local hardware store (or even Target or Walmart), this little blowtorch may be the most fun fire-starting tool Dad has ever used. In addition to getting wood or charcoal burning, dads who like to DIY could also use the torch for some light welding.

For the dad who loves to spend hours over a grill, few — if any — things are better than these behemoth charcoal briquettes for long, low, and slow cooking of ribs, brisket, big cuts of pork, and so on. When arranged in a way that allows for enough airflow, they can burn for at least four hours (the brand says up to eight, which is a lot longer than I’ve ever needed them for).

I own not one but two Hults Bruk axes (okay, one is a hatchet, to be precise). The Swiss company has been making its tools since 1697. From the quality (and sharpness) of the metal blade, to the craftsmanship of the shaft, to the razor edge you can get with just a quick sharpening, this axe is peerless when it comes to chopping wood.

These seven-inch-long matches are a more refined way for the dad who always has the fireplace going to perform his beloved ritual. The glass jar they come in not only makes them more giftable, but also has a built-in strike pad. (If the label turns you off, you can always peel it off.) Making them even neater is the fact that you can choose from red, black, or white match heads.

The BioLite FirePit combines fire, arguably humankind’s oldest technology, with more recent advancements in that field — namely, the app you can use to start it. As the Strategist has written, you don’t even need to know how to build a fire to use it. Even fire-loving dads like me can appreciate the ease with which the app (or buttons on the unit) can regulate airflow to the fire chamber, helping create a uniformly burning blaze that is very low in smoke yet quite hot, even with only a couple logs burning at a time. Should you splurge (or chip in with relatives) on one, it’s the type of gift that can keep giving gift ideas, because there are lots of accessories you can get, from a part that turns it into a griddle, to a poker, to a bag that makes it easier for Dad to schlep around.