4 of the coolest way to make a fire without a lighter or matches!

Chances are that when you’re staying at some of the best UK glamping destinations the country has to offer you are going to be provided with adequate equipment for cooking, or at the very least making you’re a flame to cook with. However, if you are on a day trip and you have forgotten the all-important matches/lighter to get the flame burning for the mini-BBQ, for example, or even just in extremely windy or wet conditions your matches/lighter are rendered almost redundant, so it’s game over… or not, if our tips are followed!

 A cartoon drawing of the fire ring from the Captain Planet series

You’re sure to impress whoever you’re with if you are able to start a fire with one of the alternative techniques we have for you to try!

We’re sure you’re dying to find out what these super-cool ways to start a fire are, so here they are:


Chocolate Bar & Soda Can

We’ve blown your mind already, haven’t we? This is the real deal, so stick with us!


Four things are required to get the fire going; a sunny day, a soda can, a bar of chocolate and some tinder.


First off, you’ll need to give the bottom of the soda can a polish using the chocolate. Just open your chocolate bar up, then give the bottom of the soda can a rub with it. This method is the same as polishing a pair of shoes with polish, and will give your soda can a shine to it, just like a small circular mirror.


Once you have given your can a good shining on the bottom the sunlight will reflect off it nicely, creating a distinct focal point.


Next you’ll need to point that shiny base up at the sun. By doing this, you’ll be creating a little ‘laser beam’ of heat refracting off the base of the soda can which you should have directed at your tinder. Place the tinder about an inch from the reflecting light’s focal point. With any luck you should have a flame in just a matter of seconds.


Unrealistic tools to make a fire with perhaps, but cool to show people nonetheless!


Batteries & Steel Wool

This one’s easy and you can try it almost anywhere!


Start by stretching out the steel wool until it’s around six inches long and roughly half an inch wide.


Next you will want to start rubbing the battery on your freshly stretched out steel wool. You can make use of any battery, but for optimum results you want to use the 9-volt models. Ensure you are rubbing the contacts of the battery on the steel wool until you start to see the wool glow and burn. Give it some gentle blowing, but not too hard or you’ll kill the flame, before swiftly transferring the fame to your ready-made tinder nest. Voila! You have a fire!


However stupid this sounds, it is possible. You just need to make sure you have clear ice that has no clouds of impurities in it and that it’s shaped to resemble a lens shape.


This is more of a trick to show people, but if you’re venturing around in the winter it can be an ideal way to make a fire, and if not, it’s worth trying as it’s so cool!


Ideally you want to fill up a cup lined with foil using melted snow, or pond/lake water. Allow time for it to freeze and form the ice you are going to use for making the fire with, which needs to be roughly two inches in width.


Take a knife to the ice, using extra caution, both for you and the ice, and use your knife to fashion a lens shape from the ice, taking note to ensure your ice is thicker in the middle and tapers to become narrower towards the edges.


The next step is to polish your freshly shaped lens, using your hands. By doing this the heat given off from your hands will melt the ice enough so you get a nice smooth surface. But don’t rub too much or you’ll melt your lens back to water again!


Here’s where the magic happens. Take your piece of ice and angle it towards the sun just as you would if it were a magnifying lens, for example (we’ve all seen people do that before).  Get the focus of your light on the pre-made tinder nest and within no time at all you should be seeing a flame come to life. Now how cool is that?



Have we saved the weirdest/coolest one ‘til last? Let’s see.


Were you aware that by merely filling a balloon with water, you have the ability to change a standard balloon into a lens that can be used to give you some fire? Here’s how to do it:


Fill your chosen balloon with water, tie the knot at the end, and aim for the most spherical shaped balloon you can.  Make it overly large and you’ll lose the focal abilities of the balloon.


Go ahead a squeeze your water-filled balloon until you find a shape that offers you a sharp

circle of light from the sun and hold it closer than usual lenses, we suggest 1-2 inches from your tinder, and leave focused on the tinder until it begins to heat up and create a flame.




We’d love to see your efforts at these fire-starting techniques, so please feel free to share them with us.


Image courtesy of captainplanetofficial/Instagram

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