A tinder bundle: a big handful of dry grass, dry leaves, or similar – made into a ‘nest’.
Ensure your fire bed (or fire tepee) is ready and prepared with kindling / twigs / wood of various sizes, and ready to accept your burning tinder.
How to use flint and steel
These instructions are for right-handers. The opposite works for left-handers:
- Hold the flint in your left hand so that one of its longer sharp edges is at a 45 degree angle, facing your right hand.
- Lay a piece of char cloth the size of a postage-stamp on the top (flat) side of the flint, and hold it there with your left thumb.
- Keep the char cloth close to the sharp edge of the flint, a little back from the edge
- Hold the striker vertically in your right hand
- To make sparks, bring the striker down at a 30 degree angle across the edge of the flint. Following through with long strokes will help.
- Keep striking down until the char cloth catches a spark – this usually happens at the edge of the char cloth and might take one or two goes.
- When a spark catches on the char cloth, it’ll glow red, you can blow gently on it to help it spread.
- Place the glowing ember in your tinder nest, then blow hard or waft the nest, it'll make smoke first, then burst into flame.
- Transfer the burning tinder into your fire bed and cover with kindling, and voila!
Silver Birch Bark
One of nature’s best firelighters. This light, thin bark takes a spark well, even when wet. It will help your tinder to catch fire - a small handful should be enough.
Highly flammable. Take a small pinch, fluff it up and add it into your tinder bundle with the silver birch bark to help the tinder catch fire.