How to Start and Maintain a Fire
Creating and maintaining fire is one of the most important survival skills that you need to learn. Being able to get a fire going and maintaining it can mean the difference between life and death in a survival situation. Fire can be very useful in a survival situation, you can use it to boil water for drinking, cooking, provide heat and even use it as a signal for help. Another important use of fire when surviving outdoors is it can serve as a weapon to drive away wild predatory animals providing you a sense of security and comfort.
Starting a fire outdoors can be very difficult, most of the time you will be forced to use wet wood which only makes it even more difficult. You can use something permanent like an EverStryke match but without the right knowledge on how to start a fire without the use of matches, lighters, or paper can be life threatening as you will be forced to survive in harsh cold conditions. Here’s a quick 3 step guide on how to start a fire outdoors.
1. Prepare your materials
Fuel or tinder is the most important material to successfully create a fire. There are a lot of materials that can be used as fuel or tinder even when surviving outdoors. Frayed pieces of clothing and lint from your pockets can be used as tinder. Another great option for fire starters would be Q-tips cotton ends, small scraps of papers, and fluff from wool clothing. There are also a lot of materials that can be used as tinder but are usually overlooked like insect repellent, chap-stick, deodorant stick, petroleum jelly, carmex, alcohol prep pads, and even snack chips. You can use any of the materials mentioned above as efficient tinder or fuel to successfully create a fire.
2. Building a Fire
Keeping the fire burning can be very difficult, before you start a fire always make sure to have these fire following materials ready: a bark, plenty of small twigs, and different types of flammable items or materials that you can get. All tinder or fuel that you gathered should be placed in an area of ground that is cleared and away from the fire. The next thing you need to do is make sure that your fire is contained to avoid accidents and injury. Create a barrier by surrounding the burn area with a non flammable ring made of rocks, bricks, blocks, scrap metal and other non flammable materials. By creating a barrier you will be able to accomplish these three most important factors in creating and maintaining a fire:
- Containing the fire.
- Depending on the materials that you use, the barrier that you created around the fire will become heated and retains this heat for a long period of time. You can then use these materials to keep you warm, heat up water, and even cook and heat up food.
- Having a barrier around the fire will help maintain it by protecting the fire from being blown out by a gust of wind. In a survival environment where making a fire is difficult the smallest breeze can waste all your hard work and even deplete your resources very fast. When making a barrier just make sure that it is wide enough to let oxygen get into the fire and keeping unwanted breeze or wind out.
3. Putting it all Together to make a Fire
After gathering all the fuel and tinder you need and creating a fire place put the tinder at the center of it and place the twigs and small amount of fuel in the tinder. Remember not to bury the tinder. Place the fuel in a tee-pee above the tinder lying loose to allow oxygen to flow through. Using a fire starter like a flint and steel, matches, or lighter ignite the tinder and place more fuel as the fire grows. Make sure that you have stacked a lot of fuel as fire will consume large amounts of fuel very quickly, by doing this you can save time and save yourself the trouble of trying to find more fuel in the darkness as your fire is about to go out.
Damp wood can also be stacked for fuel, just place it around the rock circle or barrier and let it dry out from the heat of the fire. Keep in mind that the more fuel you add the bigger and hotter the fire will grow so you need to consider how long you need to keep the fire burning for your meals or to simply heat yourself. Keeping the fire going to finish all the things you need to do and not creating a large fire than what is necessary will help you save on fuel.
Watch this video on how to build and maintain fire when surviving outdoors:
Starting a Fire in a Wet Environment
The capacity to create fire is an ability that ought to be exercised in all weather conditions. It goes without saying, the times when you most need fire are also the times when fire is most difficult to develop. Therefore it is essential to have a strong understanding of what techniques are reliable and where to discover completely dry products. The self-confidence you will certainly gain from learning this capability is satisfying, yet it should likewise possess a great piece of humble pie. Simply due to the fact that you can begin fire on a snowy day does not indicate you might do the very same in a rainfall hurricane. It is your responsibility to frequently press your skills the next degree and to never expand contented. So how do you push on your own? Leave the bic lighter in the house, and grab the ferro pole instead. When you have actually mastered it, leave the ferro pole and bring only your knife … use it to create a bow drill set. Just keep in mind that the road to developing terrific capability requires a frame of mind of using “less and less” instead of regularly bringing more gadgetry to the lumbers.
Checkout this video for tips on how to start a fire in wet environment.