Last night after the kids went to bed I had to get out in the woods for awhile. I grabbed my BOB, threw it on my back, and headed out into the forest. As usual I evaluated my gear as I went along, but I decided to use the stuff I know works and just enjoy myself.It was pitch black and the wind was blowing pretty hard. If you’ve never been in the woods at night with a howling wind one of the things you have to watch out for are called “widow makers.” A widow maker is a tree branch that could come crashing down on your head and make your wife a widow. I was out hunting a few years ago and a medium sized pine tree about ten feet behind me went over with a hell of a bang and scared the life out of me. If you think it won’t happen to you think again! Watch yourself out there.
Anyway, after I got to camp I started a small fire, got some coffee going, sat back and just enjoyed myself. It seems like I’m always evaluating a piece of gear, or practicing a new skill, or sharpening a knife, or whatever and last night I just said to hell with it, laid back against my pack and enjoyed watching the fire burn.
It can’t always be about work and prepping and never having any fun. Every once in awhile you have to let go and enjoy yourself.
But this being SHTF blog I’ll share a tip with readers who may not have spent a lot of time in the woods. It’s a technique for heating a pot directly on the fire without digging your canteen cup into the flames. What you do is build your fire like a log cabin (I usually prefer a tipi fire myself), and once you have a small bed of coals you lay down three or four pieces of wood and then put your pot – or canteen cup in this case – directly on that fresh wood. To help stability split a one to two inch stick in half and lay them side by side with the flat side down. Put the pot on top of that and you have a good stable surface for cooking. Here’s the caveat: you can’t leave it on for too long or it’ll fall into the fire. Make sure it’s good and stable, set the cup on it, wait for it to heat up, then pull it off before the wood underneath burns up.
Simple, effective, and a good use of your resources. It heats faster because it’s on top of the fire and it doesn’t get as much ash and stuff in it as you would by digging into the fire. And do I have to tell you to use gloves or something when you pull it out of the fire?
Have you taken time out to have fun lately?