How to Build a Fire in the Unforgiving Wilderness When it’s Raining

The best thing about survival knowledge is the fact that you most probably will never have to use it. It’s one of those things you need just in case. As an added benefit, you can use some of the things you will learn in your everyday life, or at least when you go out camping. One of the most important things you must understand, if you want to be able to survive in the wilderness, is to learn how to build a fire in every situation. Creating a flame is the cornerstone of survival. It’s used for warmth and can be used as a weapon if needed.

Keep in mind though that all animals are afraid of fire, and there is a perfectly good reason for that. If you don’t look after your fire, it might spiral out of control in a matter of minutes.
Usually, when you go out camping, you are well supplied, and you actually have a lot of means to produce a spark and flame. But say you got stranded, you lose your gear, and you need to survive in the woods for some time. Building fire is not that hard when everything is dry, but if it rains, you’ll need to have a special trick up your sleeves.

The first thing you will need is something to burn. Since you are in the forest, this won’t be too hard. The hard part is to find something that actually burns when it’s raining, so using leaves won’t do you any good. You can use pine needles instead. They are easy to ignite even when it’s raining because they don’t absorb a lot of water and can be quickly dried. If you aren’t in a coniferous forest, you can use bark. Finding dry bark is simple. It’s on the side of any tree. But the best one for starting fires is Birchbark, because it burns even wet, thanks to the oils inside it. If the outer layer of the bark is soaked, worry not, the inner parts are dry, and you can scrape them off. The same goes for shavings of wet sticks as well. The most important thing is to keep these tinder dry and warm, so creating a fire would be easier.

Your next step is to find some kindling. This is a bit harder, but not impossible. Since the twigs must be dry, you should check first in places where there could be some shelter such as bushes, tree trunks, or sites where boulders create some dry shade. You should collect some bigger woods as well if they are dry, or just a bit wet. Since when you start the fire, you will need more massive woods to burn to keep the flame going. When you think you have gathered enough wood for your fire, double it, and you are ready to start. Just one more step before the ignition – place bark on the ground, so the moisture in the soil won’t stop your attempts to create your fire.

Congrats, you are ready to start your fire. But before you do, you must first find the right place to place it. After all, building a fire under the rain is pointless. The best possible site is in a small cave. Be sure though that there aren’t any animals living there. If they are, and you start a fire in the entrance, they will attack you, because they will feel trapped inside the cave. You can also find a big rock, leaning forward and creating shelter from the rain. If you have tarps of some sort, you can place it between two branches and build your own sanctuary. In this case, be sure to put the tarps high enough so it won’t catch fire.

If it’s raining, there is almost no chance of you starting a wildfire, nevertheless be careful not to place the flames under bushes or trees, even if they are wet.
Being able to create a fire if, by any chance, you get stuck in the woods without any gear is crucial for your survival. Of course, let’s hope you will never need it. It’s best always to go prepared to the woods and avoid getting lost.