Learning the proper way to start a fire is a critical survival skill. The Marine Corps teaches this valuable skill to Marines attending both the Mountain Warfare Training Center in Bridgeport, CA and the Jungle Warfare Training Center in Okinawa Japan (I was lucky enough to attend both). Fire as you probably know is not very ‘tactical’ for military operations. I remember being out on a field exercise at Camp Lejeune (it was one of the coldest days on record), so myself and a few other Marines decided to make a small fire to huddle around for warmth. Not 5 minutes after we had a small fire going our Section Leader came over and stomped the damn fire out! He said it wasn’t tactical and that it compromised our position by giving off that smokey smell and the visible smoke in the air. With that said it is still a good skill to know.
I have already written several articles on the subject of fire starting and fire kits to carry in your backpack or go-bag. The following video shows one of the instructors from JWTC in Okinawa instructing on one of the ways to start a fire. Based upon my experience since being out of the Marine Corps I disagree with him using the sharpened edge of his blade to scrape the flint rod (in a drop dead survival situation I get it), but not as your primary means for getting some sparks on the magnesium shavings. The Strikeforce Firestarter, by UST is one of the best strikers on the market in my honest opinion.
We’d like to see what you carry in your kit to get that ever important fire started. Share with us in the comments section.
Featured image courtesy of marines.mil