Mar 10, 2009

Fire Building

Fire building is a basic technique all campers must learn. Its importance is not only limited to cooking (especially now that portable stoves are available), but to a large extent on survival. From a source of heat in cold weather, to smoking away insects and to restraining some wild animals to enter the campsite and to signaling positions in order to aid search and rescue teams.
However, campers must check for any restrictions on making a fire in a particular campsite. For as much as it is useful, it can be rendered dangerous in places, which are prone to forest fires.
Starting a fire is different from lightning a fire. Although our basic concern here is the former, it is important to note that there are technologies available now which far more efficient than rubbing two stones together. There is the basic wooden match and butane lighters, never ever leave for the mountains without them. Magnifying glass but this can only be used during daytime. And in very damp conditions, the use of a magnesium fire is one safety accessory that must be made available in any camping trips.
Whatever method of lightning a fire you should choose, the next steps in building a fire is as basic as ABC.
First, one must gather more than enough materials to sustain the fire. Fire ingredients include the following: Tinder. Dried tree bark, twigs and other smaller pieces of wood which are highly combustible. Kindling. Dried leaves and small sticks not thicker than an inch, which is, place at a pyramidal position over the tinder. Wood. Branches and logs which are placed loosely over the tinder and kindling; starting with a slightly larger piece of wood than the kindling and adding much bigger wood intervals. Then dig a circular trench not deeper than 30 cm., which would provide protection from the wind for the tinder fire. Place on the center of the trench a generous amount of tinder material. Build a teepee shape with the use of kindling materials. Balancing four sticks in a pyramidal position and adding more and even larger sticks in the same manner does the teepee shape. Strike a match or use a lighter to light up the tinder materials. Add more tinder and kindling material until the fire stabilizes and is able to burn the bigger sticks. When the teepee catches fire, it will then collapse into a bed of ember, which can be fed, with larger pieces of wood.

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