When you go camping, backpacking or hiking, starting a fire is always essential. Although it may sound easy, most people struggle to produce an efficient campfire. When you’re outdoors, matches are essential. If campers run out of these, it can greatly worsen the situation. As a result, it is important to know different fire starting methods and have different fire starter kits ready. Whether the fire will be use to cook your food or just keep you warm at night, it is imperative that you know how to build a fire using different fire starter kits with or without the availability of matches.
Preparing the Campfire
When planning to build a campfire, make sure that fires are allowed in the area or if they require fire pits. Before your start the fire, it is important that you have sufficient water and a shovel nearby in case the fire gets out of hand. Secondly, a proper fire pit should be made using rocks placed in a circle. This acts as the fire ring.
- Tinder– Examples include dry grass, twigs or bark shavings. Basically any small and dry materials that will easily burn when ignited with a spark.
- Kindling– These are medium-sized materials that easily catch fire such as dry leaves, sticks or larger pieces of bark. Make sure that they are dry and not too big.
- Wood logs- These are larger pieces used to keep the fire going once it is started from the kindling. Again, it is essential that the wood is dry and long dead.
Other Common Fire Starters
Not having matches around should not stop you from making a decent fire. In fact, there are various fire-starting methods without any need for matches. Here are a few common methods you can use when you find yourself without a lighter or match sticks.
Chips – If you have a bag of potato chips or other greasy snacks in your backpack, you can use these as easy and quick fire starters.
Flint and steel – This is one of the most basic ways to start a fire. Using the flint to strike the steel at an acute angle can create sparks to start your fire. Make sure to strike near the kindling.
Lenses – If the sun is out, you can angle your magnifying glass or the lenses of your eyeglasses toward the sun. Place a ball of tinder right under the lens and make sure to concentrate the sunlight into the smallest area possible. Adding water to the lens can intensify the light beam even more.
Household items – Common items found at home such as candles, alcohol hand sanitizers, alcohol swabs and insect repellents can also be used as a quick and easy fire starter as well.
Building fire is essential to any outdoor adventure. Hence, it is important that one not only has the equipment to start a fire, but the skills to do so as well. This way, even if you forget to bring these tools, you can always be more resourceful. Anyway, without the right skills all the fire starter equipment will only go to waste. Additionally and most importantly, it is essential that you use caution when starting a fire with any fire starter tool of your choice.