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Indian Nations CouncilThe Greatest Show on Earth

HEAT - enough heat to bring fuel to ignition.

AIR - to provide oxygen for burning process.

When one of the three things is removed, the fire stops burning.  Water cools fuel below ignition point, dirt cuts off the oxygen supply.

A fire needs three different kinds of fire material - tinder, kindling and fuel.  The match lights the tender, the tender lights the kindling, and the kindling starts the fuel burning.

TINDER - should start to burn as soon as it is touched with a lighted match.  Use thin twigs, tops of dried weeds, wood shavings, dryer lint, etc.

KINDLING - is little sticks and can be as small as a pencil or as thick as your thumb.

FUEL - is the larger wood that keeps your fire going.  Do not use green or freshly cut wood, it does not burn well.

Stack the wood in three separate piles far enough away from the fire, so that no sparks can fly into stacks.

Building Your Fire

Using larger pieces of wood, form an "A" on the ground.  Get your tinder and kindling.  You will need two handfuls of kindling.  Put the tinder on the "A" instead of the ground.  This way the tinder has air underneath it and there is space for your match.

Light the match.  Kneel near the fire and strike the match away from you.  Tip the match down so that the flame catches on the match stick.  On a windy day, kneel with your back to the wind and cup your hands around the match.

Now light the tinder.  Carefully add more tinder.  You may need to blow at the base of the fire.

Add kindling.  When the tinder has started to burn, add kindling.  Start with small pieces.  Remember to keep close together but allow space for air.

Types Of Fire

TEPEE FIRE:  This a good fire for quick cooking since the heat is concentrated on one spot.  It looks like a tepee.  Stack the fuel over the  foundation fire.  The foundation fire will start the  fuel burning.  Add fuel as you need it.

CRISSCROSS FIRE:  This type is long lasting and makes good coals.  It is good for a campfire.  To make this, lay fuel over the foundation fire in a crisscross pattern.  Be sure to leave room for air.  Add fuel as needed.

REFLECTOR BAKING:  This type of fire is built against a high back of rocks or logs; a wire screening over coals is good for roasting corn.

After you are finished with your fire make sure it is out by:

¥ Scattering ashes or embers

¥ Sprinkling with water

¥ Drenching charred logs

¥ Covering with dirt or sand

When you can hold your hand on the spot where the fire was and not feel any warmth, your fire is out.

Cooking With Charcoal

To start charcoal fires make and use fire starters or a starter can.  Charcoal starts slowly.  Allow at least 30 minutes before fire is ready to use.  To start charcoal use one of the following methods:

¥ Place small twigs or fire starters close together as a base.  Leave an air space beneath starters.  Place charcoal on top of this.  Light the fire starters, and gradually add a few more briquets, one at a time.

¥ Use a starter can.

Charcoal will be grey-white in the daylight and red at night when ready.

Starter Can

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