Nobody knows when we first did this, or whose idea it was. Some genius somewhere.
There is a big difference between a cooking fire and a camp fire - not just in size but also in terms of the activities in and around them. Once we realized that, and that there was no law against having two, everything changed.
The kitchen fire usually begins with Mullowney digging out an "Irish oven" in just the right spot (See No. 9). The social fire also needs to be just the right distance away from the kitchen fire - far enough to avoid interfering, but close enough there can be interaction between them and an easy transfer of coals to the kitchen fire with long-handled shovels and fire gloves. Cannibalizing of the social fire for the benefit of the kitchen fire is part of the circle of life on a gravel bar. One has to balance the desire for warmth against the desire to eat. Knowing the coals from the social fire will be used to cook (See Nos. 13 and 18), it makes the selection of the type of wood and the initial building up of a big fire very important (See Nos. 20 and 25). This is not always easy. Sometimes people forget they are going to want more wood later because it doesn't seem that important at the time (See Nos. 11 and 16).