160. Survival Tip / Fire Making

Dear Friends and Wanderingvets:

Recently I ran into a situation where I could not get my tinder to stay lit. I was backpacking in the woods and all I had for tinder was some small sticks and there was no dry grass available for tinder to aid in lighting the wood.

So ,scratching my head in what to do, since making the wood bow out of wood and the ever present dental floss was out of the question something did dawn on me from my reading. I reached deep into my cargo pocket where I keep my ever present bottle of hand sanitizer and reread the back of the bottle again and it said: Ethyl Alcohol62%……Antiseptic. Like a blue flash I had an idea.

I took a twig and placed a two inch line of hand sanitizer along its stem. I then lit it without result I thought. I lit it again and burned my finger as it was burning so clear and hot that it was burning invisibly. The fire had started without me being able to see it.

I had a fire within minutes. This is a good tip for wet areas.



1 Response to “160. Survival Tip / Fire Making”

  1. June 30, 2008 at 9:58 am

    Very good! Fire is so important that one should always carry a means to help make a fire even if the wood is damp or wet.

    I recommend cotton balls or dryer lint (recycle that stuff!) mixed liberally with petroleum jelly. These will burn very hot for several minutes; enough to dry out some kindling and catch it on fire.

    I also recommend carrying a firesteel in addition to matches or lighter: a firesteel always works, even when wet and there are no parts to break or fuel to run out of.

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