Campfire Cooking and Protecting Food From Bears

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 19,154
    Camping expert Tim MacWelch of Earth Connection provides advice on cooking outdoors and keeping your food away from wildlife.

    Tim MacWelch: Hi, I am Tim MacWelch of Earth Connection School of Wilderness Survival and Ancient Skills, near Fredericksburg, Virginia and this is our video clip series on how to go Camping. We have just started a campfire and in this clip we are going to show you how to do some camp cooking and also how to animal proof your food. So we have got a little campfire going here. We have placed two small logs in here. They are dead dried logs and they are going to act as both firewood and as a cook top. So we're going to place our pan over our little fire, a little water in there, make sure it's going to sit good, not fall over and put our fire out. So we are going to heat up some water. Body of pots come with a separate handle, this is nice, because you can grab the pot from whichever angle you need to and move it to keep from burning your fingers and this stays cool, because it's a separate item.

    Any time you can use a lid over your pot, you are going to trap more heat in the pot and your food or water or whatever you are trying to heat up, will cook more quickly. While that's going, I want to show you something else which you can cook on. This is a little small alcohol stove; this is a Trianga stove from Europe. It's very simple, it's a little brass can. Around the top of the can are little holes, where fuel will vaporize and jet out, just by the fact that there is alcohol burning down in this little sump. Anytime where we are using fuel for any kind of camping stove, we want to keep it tightly sealed in an approved fuel bottle. We don't want this to look like a water bottle, because we don't want to have any accidents out here. So we are going to pour in this pure alcohol and then tightly seal our fuel bottle again. Now the reason why I use alcohol stoves, is because I have a multipurpose fuel here, I can use this alcohol to burning my stove, to cook my food, I can also use it to disinfect wounds, I can use it to sterilize my water purification equipment, I can use it to help start my campfire, so it does serve many different functions.

    Although an alcohol stove burns at a cooler temperature and it cooks the food and blows the water much more slowly. Now the Trianga stoves come with a little three piece stand that you can assemble very quickly. This little stand holds not only the stove, but whatever pot you are going to cook over the stove with. We also have this little lid, which has a damper on it; where we can control the amount of fire coming out of that hole by restricting its exit. So we are going to light our little stove now. We are going to take our lighter and a little twig, dip the twig in the alcohol to get some fuel on it, and light it. Alcohol burning during daylight is very-very hard to see. So you have to be careful with this type of stove, where I can actually feel the heat coming off of it, even if I cannot see it. Now we have lit our stove, we are going to place our damper on top of it. This is just simply a little cap with a movable lid which will control some of the heat from our stove. Once we have placed the damper on there, we can now place our pot on top of the stand and begin to cook. So now we finished cooking, we have got our left over food, our dishes, anything else that might smell like food in a bag. We are going to tie this securely to a 50 feeter rope, this cylinder, little type of rope, now on the other end of this rope we have a stick tied to it, this could be a stick, a rock, your little trowel from going to the bathroom, whatever you have handy. Now we are going to throw this up in to a branch in a tree. Now we will untie this and hoist up our bag of food. This is to keep Bears and Coyotes and curious Bobcats and all kinds of different animals out of our food supply. Raccoons and Pawsomes can still get up there and get that food; even Squirrels and smarter animals can shoot through this rope and drop that bag, but this is our best defense against losing our food supply while we are out camping. To tie off our rope, what we are going to do is wrap around the tree several times, if we have a little limb or branch that we can tie off on, that's great. If not, we will slip the rope under itself and tie off on it this way with a slipknot. Now why don't we just cut the rope and tie a proper note? Well, we want to keep all of our rope, because we never know how tall that next tree branch is going to be. So it's nice to preserve your rope and save it for the next time. So let's tuck that under there and that is how to animal proof your food. Now next, we are going to talk about how to entertain yourself while you are out camping.