The Dakota fire hole is a valuable wilderness survival aid because it burns fuel more efficiently, producing hotter fires with less wood. In many areas firewood is scarce or requires a large amount of time and expenditure of energy in foraging to obtain it. Once you build a fire, efforts are better spent attending to your other wilderness survival needs rather than in the constant gathering of firewood
Other advantages of the Dakota fire hole are that it creates a kind of woodstove with a stable platform that is very convenient to cook over.
This is how a Dakota Fire Hole works. As hot air from the fire exits through the top of the fire pit, a suction is created that draws fresh air down through the tunnel and into the base of the fire. This brings in plenty of fresh oxygen for combustion. A cycle develops: The hotter the fire gets, the more air is drawn down into the fire pit – making the fire hotter.