American Bushman

"If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading or do things worth writing." —Benjamin Franklin

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Practice Those Skills When You Can

I've made mention here over and over about the lack of opportunity to get into the woods to work on new skills and practice old ones. I suppose that's because, until yesterday, I had thought about working on those skills in the woods or at least in the back yard. The question that popped into my head yesterday was, "Why not practice those skills during the day to day activities you were doing anyway?"

There's no difference in the preparation required to start a campfire or a chimney of charcoal. You still need tinder, an ignition source, and fuel. With that in mind I fired up the charcoal grill last night using only my Victorinox Farmer, found tinder, and my cut off firesteel.

What I found was that my setup didn't work very well. The cut off firesteel is too short and the other tools on the lanyard would get in the way while trying to get the tinder to light.

It did, ultimately, work out for me and I got the grill lit without the use of matches or a lighter AND it gave me some valuable insight in to how I could better set up my tools for future use.

It's not very exciting and it's certainly not survival but using the skills we have on a daily basis is still the best way to make sure we own them when we need them. Sometimes it requires a bit of creativity to find a use for those skills and I hope to discover more mundane tasks that I can "spice up" with the use of some of my gear and skills.

Thanks for reading,



At 5:03 PM, Anonymous George Hedgepeth said...

Man dirt time is where you TAKE it. I learned hand drill fire in an apartment! Keep it up- these insights are what makes someone competent.

At 5:40 PM, Anonymous said...

Yeah, you gotta use your skills. It's not enough to have learned how to something or have the equipment. You need to actually put them to use, otherwise you may very well find there are critical components lacking at the most inopportune time.


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