View Full Version : Pitchwood fire starting

06-06-2011, 02:28 PM
As requested by Matt, here are some pictures starting a fire with pitchwood.
I find pitchwwod here in the NW by looking for Pine & douglas Fir stumps that have been cut down or otherwise destroyed (fire or lightening) while the sap was up in the tree. I usually find it concentrated mainly near the bottom of the stump & roots. I look for yellowish, or golden color and a smell like turpentine when the wood is scraped or cut.

To use I clean off a piece and split to a manageable size. To get tinder I then scrape my knife blade up & down the wood at a 90 degree angle, making very small fine shavings. (please forgive the piece of plywood & metal bucket in the pictures, we have a burn ban on in the local area, so I had to take the pictures in the backyard). I get a big bunch of shavings, about 3 times as much as you think you will need.

I then strike a spark directly into the shavings, when I get a flame I add thinly split pieces to build the flame.

I hope this helps.

06-06-2011, 02:31 PM
Stump in forest.

06-06-2011, 02:32 PM
Another picture

06-06-2011, 02:43 PM
making flame

06-06-2011, 02:48 PM
The flint I used was a small Boy Scout striker I bought many years ago and carry with me everywhere attached to my Leatherman tool pouch. It doesn't has as hot a spark as some but it works well. I usually use the knife blade on the leatherman to strike the sparks. I find it easier if I rest the strike on something solid and stroke the full lenght of the striker, without going off the end and putting out my flame.
The weather was 70ish with a > 10mph wind. Keep practicing.

Matt In Oklahoma
06-06-2011, 07:09 PM
Awesome, Thanks!