Starting a fire in a survival situation is often critical and life saving!
Many people think that a fire is just luxury. Of course many do realize its' importance, especially if you are already an avid prepper or outdoor activist. But do you realize the importance of a fire in its full entirety? Well here is a list of some of the most common ways people die in the wilderness:
Hypothermia, lack of body heat. - Can be cured with fire!
Dehydration and Hyperthermia (excessive body heat) - Fire can help! How? Read on...
Insects - Again,fire helps....
Snakes and Spiders - You'll see how soon enough...
Predators - Solution = Fire
Suicide - Same answer; Start a fire.
Ok so you get the point. These are certainly NOT the TOP ways to die in any order. For example, other incidents such as falling, avalanches, drowning and so on are more common ways to die, but hard to find a way to claim that a fire could have helped. Right?
Either way these are all real threats and will be referred to in explaining the important of fire starting. So lets begin another list!
Starting a Fire Will Provide You With These Benefits:
Warmth - Even in extremely cold conditions, with just enough insulation and protection from elements, a fire can give you heat long enough to survive until help arrives.
Visible Light - Sight is the human's best sense. Without it we are usually pretty clueless. A fire will allow you to continue important tasks that affect your survival situation whether it is preparing your shelter and bedding, eating food, rigging an animal trap, weapon or so on.
Water Purification - It is nearly impossible to be entirely sure any given source of water is completely safe to drink. Boil your water and have it filtered through a cloth if it looks dirty or filled with debris. This should ensure a majority of the time you will be drinking good water. No more dehydration.
Signaling - If people are searching for you and they see fire or smoke, they will come. If people are not looking for you and they see fire and smoke in a strange place, they will come. If someone sees THREE fires they will come. Building a fire is a great way to get noticed and hence rescued.
Ward off predators, insects and most things that want to bite or eat you - A fire scares most wild creatures and will keep them a safe distance. Although it is not 100% so I still recommend taking additional steps. Elevated bedding, trip line alarm systems, mosquito netting, natural repellents, and defense weapons can not only be brought with, but found or created in the wild. Defend yourself from predators and insects.
Cooking Food - You should almost never eat raw foods, even though most of the time it would probably be safe. The risk is too severe if you get it wrong, and cooking it over a fire is often simple enough.
Wound Disinfection - Are we getting too extreme? Not at all, sterilizing your cuts and open injuries can be an extremely important matter. We do not recommend doing this without proper training and knowledge. But disinfecting your wounds with a flame can be a great and effective way to prevent infection which can ultimately lead to more serious health concerns and even amputation and death.
Morale Boost - Starting a fire makes you feel good and it should. It gives you all those great benefits which significantly increases your chance of survival. It makes you comfortable and helps you feel safe and secure. So don't resort to suicide yet!