How To Find Dry Wood In Wet Conditions

By on January 18, 2016

The more desperately you need a fire, according to Murphy, the harder it will be to start one. Frequently, people concentrate on the initial ignition, and don’t think about the next step. If you don’t have dry materials, you’re out of luck. Here are some suggestions for finding the dry materials you’ll need.

Here are some tips for finding dry wood in the rain.

Locate the dry side of the tree: This seems elementary, but don’t try to find dry sticks on the side of the tree that is wet. If there have been prevailing winds, the dry side will be the area that is out of the wind. This becomes important, because outwardly, the wet side may look dry. The internal wood or bark, though may be dampish. This will be harder to light.

Look for dry wood and tinder: Don’t wait until the last minute to gather your firemaking materials. As you hike or pass through the forest, always be on the lookout for pitchwood, tinder, dried pine sap, birch bark or other natural firestarters. This may save you critical time later on.

Search for wood that isn’t on the ground: In the rain, the ground will get wet, and wood will absorb the moisture.

Even when it dries out somewhat, wood on the ground can still be damp. Don’t be fooled by the dry outer appearance. A dry twig will snap cleanly when broken. Keep looking until you find twigs that break crisply.

Stack wood correctly: The survival books are full of  suggestions for stacking firewood so the pile will burn. Tipi, log cabin or other styles will work just fine if you remember to use dry wood and leave spaces between the wood so the fire can breathe.

Whittle: Always carry a knife (duh). You can whittle a dead, damp stick until you get to the dry inner wood. Then make a bunch of shaving and smaller pieces that will burn easily.

Don’t use anything green: Something that is green may also be dry. That doesn’t mean it will burn. Dry dead wood is what you’re looking for.

Starting a fire in rainy circumstances is hard, not impossible. Like anything, a little pre-planning can make all the difference.

About William Douglas

My passion is to teach what was passed down to me – the skills of self-sufficient living. Some call it survival or prepping. I call it wisdom. And my goal is to convey my wisdom and knowledge in a way that is doable for the average person.

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