sunnuntai 15. tammikuuta 2012

In the bush and gear testing

On christmas time I decided to check my small woods property if there was any damage by the storm that run over second christmas day. Wind was so strong that big spruce from neighbour side fell on top of my woodshed that I just built year ago.

So there was no damage on my land only one tree was fallen cutting logging road which leads to area. I was prepared for that and had chainsaw on trunk of my car so I could continue fast.

I have been planning to build kota-shelter and fireplace to make permanent camp on area and later cabin of some kind. So I started wandering area to look good spot for camp and when found started to look fallen trees to make poles for shelter and carry stones for fireplace. There I also had chance to test out old famous finnish "war knife" Sissipuukko m95 (known as "Ranger knife" in english), Sissipuukko is designed by J.P.Peltonen and these are made together with Fiskars.

Sissipuukko m95 is general purpose knife designed for army and outdoors professional use. It have around 5mm thick and 15cm long blade. Because it´s wedgelike profile blade don´t feel like thick at all but it splits very well when batoning firewood. Carbon steel blade have coated with somekind of teflon coating to prevent rust. Knives handle is rubber that is just molded over tang.
Sheath is made of thick leather and it have very unique rubber roll which secures knife in it´s place in sheath.

I have thought to prepare lunch on woods, but wind was still very strong so I ended up to make my fire on small hole to get cover from strong wind. It was getting dark already so I have to act fast. I took small fallen halfly wet small 6-7cm diameter tree, sectioned and batoned it for firewood. It was too damp so I needed something more dry stuff also. I collected some lower dead branches of spruce trees. Those was not completely dry neither.
After that I prepared my fire place on bottom of hole by adding some sand there with small folding showel I got from my buddy sometime ago. I haven´t really used it before that. Showel was surprisingly sturdy and worked well for small digging tasks. I also noticed that inside of the hollow handle there´s space for some essential small items if you want to, toilet paper for example?
I started to prepare my fire and noticed that it was still a bit too windy so I grabbed my poncho from backpack and build a bit of extra cover with that and few meters of iron wire I always carry with me. Now I had good means for cooking so I whittlet some tiny fuzzies with my knife and prepared bunches of spruce twigs nearby. It took quite long while that I got fire going well enough and got enough coals and heat that even bit wet wood will start to burn.

I have prepared very simple meal for me: can of peasoup, rye bread, some xmas ham leftovers with mustard. Now I also had chance to test brand new Zebra pot (got it xmas gift from a friend), smallest 10cm diameter and I found it just good size for one man´s soup. I have used bigger 14cm diameter pot for years so I knew what to expect. Those pots are great for cooking over fire and being stainless steel will last forever and won´t contaminate your food at all like aluminum can do (I don´t consider that so serious anyway). After forawhile I had nice hot soup ready to eat. It´s incredible how delicious simple food like that can be in the bush when you feel a bit cold and make a lot of effort to get your food heated. So I happily enjoyed my meal while watching stars and slowly dying fire. After last red coals turned black I packed my stuff, poured water on my fireplace and threw some sand and soil on top of it to hide black remains of my cooking fire. Time to head back to the logging road and car. Moments like that alone in woods just with your own thoughts staring fire, sounds of nature surrounding makes great things for my head after all christmas hassle and busy family life.