What are fire kits?
A fire kit is an offshoot of a ‘survival kit’ which usually includes various forms of emergency supplies in order to survive in a particular environment, whilst the fire kit more specifically focuses on just fire. They can take many forms but in this case it will contain various tools used to create spark and flame!
One of the more ‘exciting’ aspects of gear preparation is assembling and then customising your kit to suit your needs, outdoors styles and the environment you operate in.
What should you put in your fire kit?
There are a great many tools and techniques that can be employed in order to start a fire. This blog lists some of the more traditional, hands-on methods.
A good rule of thumb is to have at least three ways to start a fire in the back country. It should also be noted that an ignition source that produces an actual flame can be important when your tinder is not completely dry, and as an emergency backup (for real survival situations)
Primary fire starting tool ideas:
➤ Ferrocerium Rod - See our other post on ‘How-to use a Ferrocerium Rod’
➤ Instant Flame Sources - Butane/Electric Lighters & Matches (Storm Proof & Regular - good for real survival situations)
➤ Fire Piston: Heated gas (oxygen) creates an ember.
➤ Flint & Steel - A carbon steel striker & flint stone.
➤ Burning glass / Sun Lens - A burning glass, also known as a burning lens or Fresnel lens, is a convex lens that is able to capture and concentrate the Suns rays into a focused beam.
Not discussed in this post, but good to keep in mind when thinking of fire making tools & resources.
➤ Saw, Hatchet or Axe and/or Knife: For preparing & processing materials.
➤ Flint Stone or Equivalent: Used for flint & steel methods.
Storage and Portability
It is also a good idea to put together portable storage containers for your collected tinder and/or fire-starting tools. Whilst it is good practice to harvest natural materials with each fresh outing, it never hurts to have emergency supplies at hand.
Tins & Metal Containers:
Tins are a good option as they come in a variety of shapes and sizes, they can also double up as a charring container. Screw lid tins are usually best for loose tinder to ensure it doesn't pop open inside your pack spilling the contents. They are usually waterproof too, as well as being re-usable!
Leather & Fabric Pouches:
Come in many shapes, sizes, materials & closure methods. This item can add to the simple pleasure of doing an everyday task. These are some of the most versatile containers as the material flexibility allows them to conform to the interior of whatever rucksack or pack they are stored in.
Jute & Natural Cordage:
Jute or natural cordage binding is a great way to keep your tinder supplies organised as it also serves the purpose of being a tinder source itself! Jute can be used to bundle smaller emergency kindling into neater groups. Birch Bark pieces can be wrapped and bound together to minimise degradation etc.
Ultimately any type of [suitable] container can be used for tinder storage, even something as simple as a Ziplock or grip seal bag can be used, giving an added benefit of being lightweight & waterproof.
All that’s left is for you to start putting your fire kit together!
Already have your fire kit setup? Let us know in the comments below what you like to take out in the field with you.