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Aug 14 2016

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Where to collect wood for a campfire in the bush

Power station at the top of the Spriginna walk, Flinders RangesI’ve discovered where all the firewood is in the park. Unfortunately it’s not even close to my campsite.

I went for a walk to Spriggina Lookout today after I got back from the Ridgetop Tour. I’m doing the startrails tour tonight, so just wanted a short walk to get some exercise. It’s only 2km up to the lookout, then 2.2km back along a track in a loop.

There, at the peak of the walk, by the power station, was wood that would be perfect for a campfire.

Unfortunately it was 2.2km back to my campsite and I really didn’t feel like walking that far dragging a log of firewood. Especially not along a track cut into the side of a hill.

Then again, it gets very cold at night.

Early morning raysEvery so often I’d pass more wood, and think “should I?” There was nothing even close to my campsite when I went for a firewood hunt yesterday. But I didn’t.

Then I saw the perfect piece. It wasn’t too big that I couldn’t drag it, and it had smaller branches off the main branch to help start the fire. And it had fallen naturally.

It was right at the 1.2km distance signpost back to the village, it was all downhill, and I could see my campsite in the distance. The path came out before the village, on the track to the campsite, so my campsite was probably a shorter distance.

Carpe diem, or carpe firewood, as they say.

20160806_164951[1]So I did my safety checks (I haven’t worked with government and travelled with Doc for nothing). I checked it over for ants, spiders, snakes or other little animals. I’d already taken my shirt off, so I wrapped that around the end I was going to pick up, and off I went.

The log wasn’t too heavy: to start. As I walked I appeared to be getting further and further from my campsite. Then there was a section of 70m or so where the path went upwards again.

I was tempted to drop my log and hope for the best further along. But I persevered.

So I walked. And walked. I saw other, better pieces. I nearly swapped a couple of times. Only the fact that they looked heavier stopped me. I started developing a sense of loyalty to my piece, we’d come a long way together.

Then I discovered that the track came out closer to the village than it did to my campsite. Not a lot, but enough that I really felt that last 100m.

So now not only do I have buns of steel, but I’m getting some pretty good guns. Or at least one good one.

And I have wood for my campfire tonight and tomorrow. And I know where to find more.

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