Fire serves many roles in
wilderness survival. Fire provides light and warmth and is essential for cooking food and purifying water.
A good survival
kit should contain all of the necessary items to start a fire. You
should always add waterproof matches, a butane lighter and paper to your
Using manual friction techniques to start a fire from
scratch is nearly an impossible task for most novices. If you would like
to learn about these techniques, consult Chapter
7 ("Firecraft") of the U.S.
Army Survival Manual.
The following are more realistic ways to start a fire:
- Striking two stones together next to dry twigs and
- Using a magnifying glass (or any convex lens) to
focus the sun's rays onto dry twigs or paper
For tinder use:
- Dead grass
- Dry twigs
- Dead tree bark
- Dry moss
- Evergreen needles
To start a fire:
- Pile your tinder material tepee
- Leave enough room between the tinder to allow oxygen
to pass (remember: oxygen is the fuel that allows a fire to burn).
- Light the tinder in multiple
- Rub the tinder with candle wax to prolong the fire.
DO NOT burn poison oak or other poisonous plants.
For more detailed information
about fire making, see Chapter
7 ("Firecraft") of the U.S. Army Survival