Top Five Mistakes Campers Make When Building A Fire

Top Five Mistakes Campers Make When Building A Fire

If you think you have enough, go get some more

Making a fire is a skill that has existed as long as civilization, maybe even longer, yet so many people struggle with this simple skill. Building a campfire today is easier than ever. Campers have access to everything from a simple match to candles designed to start a fire. Long gone are the days of rubbing sticks together. Even with these technological advances, I still see some campers struggle when building a fire. Building the perfect fire is a bit of an art. Each fire you make will have to be different. The approach you take to building a fire in the summer is different from the way you build one in the winter. Also, the purpose of the fire will play into how you build it -- you wouldn't build a bonfire to boil water. It's very hard to cover all the different approaches to fire building in one article, so the purpose of this article is to highlight some common mistakes I have seen. Usually you can get away with making a couple of these mistakes on a dry sunny day. When it's raining and snowing, these are the things you have to avoid to successfully build a campfire.

1: Not having enough tinder, kindling and fuel

Tinder is the driest, fluffiest stuff you can find. It's what you'll first ignite to catch the rest of the wood on fire. It can range from pine needles to wood shavings to dryer lint. You can never have enough tinder, especially because some sources, such as pine needles, burn out before they can catch the kindling on fire. What separates kindling from regular fuel wood is its size. Kindling should start off small as twigs to about the diameter of a quarter. Your twigs should be dry, but if they're a little wet it won't hurt it. Before you add any larger wood, your kindling should have burned down to nice hot coals. That's not to say that you should let it burn down to coals, but there should be very hot coals under your fire. A good way to judge this is that the fire feels much hotter than it looks. Then you're ready to start adding larger wood. This entire process falls apart if you don't have enough of one of three kinds of fuel. A good rule of thumb to have is if you think you have enough fuel, go get some more.

2: Building the fire improperly

When you see pictures of fires, you sometimes see that the wood is stacked in a specific way. The common pictures are pyramids, log cabins, and lean-tos. If you stack the wood the way you want it look when it's burning, it will not light. The fire needs room to grow and breathe, and if you cramp it it will die. I start almost all my fires as a few pieces of kindling and tinder mixed together and go from there. In my opinion, it's the best way to create a fire, and the easiest.

3: Smothering the fire

Even though you've collected all those extra fuel sources, you have to be patient when using them. You have to be able to read a fire to tell when it is ready for the wood. If you throw wood in the fire in excess, it will almost always go out. It blocks the airflow and prevents the fire from catching on the other wood. Most people think this is a pretty easy mistake to avoid, because you just stop throwing large pieces on, right? Wrong. Even if you're burning paper or cardboard, you can still smother a fire. When you burn these objects they don't turn into coals, and they don't immediately turn to ash. Instead, they turn into a black, burnt, and fragile version of its former self. Enough of it can clog the airflow and smother the fire.

4: Airflow

We've already discussed the problems smothering a fire by reducing its airflow, but it's much more than that. Airflow is what turns a cigarette butt into a wildfire on a bad day, but can also fuel a bonfire in a rainstorm when you know what you're doing. A fire may never even catch because it lacks airflow. I've seen this most when people try to start a fire in their backyard fire ring that is three feet tall. A tall fire ring on a still day can kill a fire. Usually, however, once the fire gets going, it can stand on its own. To help it along its way you can blow on it. Long smooth breaths on the fire's sweet spot work the best. You know you're hitting the sweet spot when the fire sounds like it's roaring, and flames shoot up after you finish. It's best to work in partners, because after a few breaths you may begin to feel light-headed. Another way to do this is with a metal pipe, as it allows you to focus the air.

5: Burning faster than your gathering

This goes back to "if you think you have enough, go get more". If you're burning straight through your kindling, you may run out before you can burn larger wood. Just like a car without gas, your fire will die down, and you may even have to restart from ashes. In most cases, your fire will get very low before this happens and you can save it. You really only have to worry about this mistake once your fire gets going. Campers tend to think that a fire reaches a point and it no longer needs as much wood or that it's fine without using more wood. As a fire grows it needs more fuel, because it is burning through wood faster than it was previously. Think of it as an athlete; the bigger their muscles get, the more energy they use, the more fuel they will need. You have to be careful though, as adding more wood to a bigger fire won't smother it, it will just make it bigger and harder to control.

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31 Apologies You Wish Your Ex Had Given You

I'm sorry I never licked your butthole.

People fall in and out of love and, as many of us know, love hurts. Love's magical, mystical, and mysterious ways haunt us, and, unfortunately, love can leave unforgivable scars. However, with time pain ends and one can mature from the learned love. Any type of closure, however, is not possible without apologies. So here are 31 "I'm sorries" you need to hear from your ex, whether male or female.

1. I'm sorry I never fully appreciated you.

Some never really appreciate what you have until you no longer have it.

2. I'm sorry I disappeared.

I just thought that maybe it was just a phase.

3. I'm sorry I hung on even when I knew it was over.

I just thought that maybe it was just a phase.

4. I'm sorry I made a fool out of you.

I never meant to, but I guess I played you and you haven't realized until now.

5. I'm sorry I watched **insert show of choice** without you.

You know, some relationships just aren't strong enough.

6. I'm sorry I never respected your family and friends.

Listen to what your friends and family have to say. They are your outside observers.

7. I'm sorry I never stood up for you.

Although you can stand up for yourself, I know I should have been there to support you.

8. I'm sorry I'm not the one for you.

I broke my promises.

9. I'm sorry I ever yelled at you.

Everything happens for a reason.

10. I'm sorry I never trusted you.

I thought you were lying with every word, but it falls on me as I never thought I deserved those words.

11. I'm sorry I never licked your butthole.

I knew you inside and out and, I swear, I loved you, but there was no way I could avoid hurting you

16. I'm sorry I turned my back on you.

I should've known better. I should've stopped before it started.

17. I'm sorry I did what I did.

I should've known better. I should've stopped before it started.

18. I'm sorry you felt alone when we were together.

It was a one-sided relationship.

19. I'm sorry I didn't treat you right.

You deserve better, but I can't be your better.

20. I'm sorry I manipulated you.

Minds have a funny way of being twisted.

21. I'm sorry I never really tried.

You begged and I just turned a blind eye.

22. I'm sorry I got overwhelmed.

It all happened so quickly.

23. I'm sorry I lied.

I thought it would be better to lie, but each lie began to pile up on top of one another.

24. I'm sorry I made a mistake.

I can't deny my past mistakes.

25. I'm sorry I didn't love you as much as you loved me.

You can't help that kind of thing.

26. I'm sorry I was scared to let you go.

But I can't keep holding on.

27. I'm sorry I can't turn back time.

I wouldn't change it all.

28. I'm sorry I was indecisive.

Who am I to say what's right or wrong?

29. I'm sorry I blamed it all on you.

It's both of our faults since it takes two to tango.

30. I'm sorry I was an idiot.

People do stupid things. It's a positive occurrence when one realizes that he/she did something stupid.

31. I'm sorry it took me this long to say, "I'm sorry".

Better late than never.

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5 Reasons Why Online Dating Is Taking Over The Dating World

"Swiping for your true love?"

I do not even know what it is like to actually meet a decent guy in person anymore. Why is this? Dating apps have been taking over the dating world. According to About U.S. News & World Report, "a multi-platform publisher of news and information," presented a survey in October 2017 stating that about 70% of single men and women use dating apps during work!

I am sure that meeting someone that is not online is obviously possible, but why is it that dating apps have become the new world of dating? Here are 5 reasons why:

1. They are convenient

You can easily set up a date with someone on the apps when you are at work, walking through the city, babysitting; the list is endless. Instead of going out to actually meet people, you can literally sit in your bed and swipe for a date.

2. They are used for boredom

Many people do truthfully go on the app due to boredom, meaning they just want someone to talk to. However, sometimes these interactions can lead to a relationship-- you never know.

3. They are easy to use.

I personally do not think dating apps are that difficult to use. They usually tell you what you should include in your profile. It is easy to view people who may catch your interest and the apps usually match you with who you like.

4. They are great for people who are shy.

Some people really do not like going out in public to meet people. This is why they turn to dating apps as they feel more comfortable connecting with others on the apps first.

5. It can be a confidence booster for people.

From personal experience, I did not know how "admirable" I was until over 100 guys were messaging me on OKCupid for my attention. Not that I am anything that spectacular, but the fact that a guy wanted to talk to me, even if it was for something like a hook up (Ew), it gave me self confidence. Obviously you need to be attracted to the person and their personality, but the point is, getting many "likes" and messages on the dating apps can lift up your confidence.

Personally, I am on and off the apps. But hey, they work for some people.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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