I had enough of sitting in the house - so we decided that it was time to take a trip to the Oregon coast. A friend of mine has a secluded property in the wilderness of the mountain, and was a perfect place to kick back and enjoy the natural life over the weekend.
I will post another video tomorrow that tells the rest of our trip - for now I would like to provide a concise example of how to start a fire with only things found in the forest and a lighter.
Knowing how to create a camp and cooking fire is an vital piece of knowledge that every human should learn as well as they learned how to walk and speak. It is certainly something that could keep you alive in a situation when you would otherwise freeze, starve, or be left stranded because search parties cannot find you. In the current times, this sort of information is even more vital since more and more people may need to utilize fire starting if things get even worse.
The two keys to starting a fire without fail are having completely dry material (you will have to dry some yourself if not), and finding burning material of all sizes - most importantly very fine fibrous material that is able to catch a spark to flame. There are three categories of wood that you will need to start and sustain your fire: tinder, kindling, and firewood (logs). Tinder is your starting material that is easy to catch flame like dried moss, leaves, grass, wood shavings, among other things. Kindling are very small to medium sized sticks that will catch quickly after a flame is established. Firewood is any type of larger branch or log typically from a tree trunk, that burns most efficiently after being split into quarters with an axe, and can only catch after enough embers and flame have been created by the smaller kindling.
In Boy Scouts (where I achieved the rank of Eagle) I was taught that there are various ways to start a fire, five of which I had to execute in front of a councilor to earn my wilderness survival merit badge (the hardest badge I attained). Some of these methods include flint and steel, a fire stick, magnifying glass, wood friction using a bow, spike, and channel, and of course the rarely utilized strike anywhere match (I was not allowed to use a lighter or regular match to meet this requirement).
There are also many stick construction methods to use for fire building (in this case I used a "Lincoln-log formation), but no matter which approach you take, always remember to have your tinder underneath the kindling, provide enough of each, and enough room in between all the material for air to flow through, so the fire can be fed oxygen continuously. Forcefully blowing on the sparks, small flames, and embers can assist in the progression of your fire's development as well. Many even use long blow-flutes to push their breath into the fire as close as possible, while keeping their face as far away as possible - you can also use flat objects to fan the fire for bursts of oxygen delivery.
SAFETY NOTE: ALWAYS CREATE A FIRE PIT BARRIER CIRLCE, CLEAR AN AREA OF 5-10 FEET AROUND YOUR FIRE CIRCLE OF ANY DEBRIS AND FLAMMABLE MATERIALS, AND NEVER START FIRES UNDER LOW HANGING TREE BRANCHES.
I will post a more comprehensive fire starting video in the future for your reference - the following video is just a three minute sample from this past weekend's excursion - enjoy.
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