Dokkas nestbox cleaning

Last weekend I was in the village of Dokkas where I was helping Dokkas Hunting & Fishing Club with a nestbox project which has been running for many years.

The nestboxes are for Smew

and Goldeneye

We cleaned out the boxes and replaced damaged ones

Here you can see both old and new boxes

After the work was completed we gathered for……you’ve guessed it, coffee and sausage around a fire.

It was a very enjoyable morning and thanks to everyone at “Dokkas Jakt och Fiske” for keeping the project going.

A new knife

I have just completed a new knife to go with my new kåsa

I have used the same wood in the middle section as I made the kåsa from.  I makings are caused by a tree fungus that was in the tree

The darker wood is from a Sallow root bur

I have used sheath leather and3 pieces of Moose horn to make the end of the knife


A new kåsa/guksi

I have just completed a new kåsa.   Guksi (pronounced gooksee) is the Sámi name for a wooden coffee cup.

I made it out of a 15 year old Birch bur given to me by my neighbour and it was bloody hard work to carve (especially the inside)!!

The dark lines are caused by a fungus that would have been growing in the tree

I have soaked the cup in rapeseed oil to bring out the patterning in the wood

In the next issue of “The Bushcraft Magazine” (coming out very soon) I write about how to make a kåsa

Swedish Fire Torch

This weekend we shall have Emma’s 6th birthday party and we have decided to have the party outside so that the children can ski and cook food over a fire.  Inspired by Ben’s post on his blog “2 The North”.  I decided to do some “Swedish Fire Torches” to cook food on.  I have used the fire torch before and was sure I had written about it on here, but having searched I cannot find anything.

Traditionally it is made by making two cross-cuts into a spruce or pine log

Then fire is made on the top and the fire will then burn down the inside of the log, drawing in air via the cuts. A kettle can then be placed on top to cook coffee.

There are a couple of rules that I recommend to follow;

  1. Ensure the log is at least the same diameter as your cooking pot (otherwise the log can burn down before the water has cooked)
  2. Ensure the four quarters are the same size (otherwise the smallest quarter will burn too fast).

I also did and experiment with four individual pieces of Birch pushed into the snow with a gap between each piece.

I was rather sceptical that this would work so well, but it did!

It burned much better than the pine log I had used the previous day.

This time, as well as cooking coffee I also made fried bannock bread.

The ingredients in my bannock were; flour, salt, water, honey, cheese and marmite.

I am thinking to also cook popcorn on Saturday.


Fire by…….water bottle!!

Wasn’t sure what I was going to write about, but today I tested a new method of making fire using a bottle of water, which worked incredibly well (no need to carry condoms any more)!

I inverted the water bottle and held to the sun, and then placed a piece of True Tinder Fungus behind the water bottle at the point where all the suns rays were being focused

Here you can see the bright spot on the fungus which is the hottest point  and you can see the grey area where the fungus is starting to burn.

Here is a close up picture of the fungus actually burning.  Even with the week winter sun, it worked very quickly (within a few seconds).

Spring is here….hopefully!!!!

The last 5 days have been sunny and although night time temperatures can still drop to -20, daytime temperatures have been reaching up to +6 degrees and the snow has started melting.

Great Tit, Willow Tit Bullfinch and Siberian Jay are singing during the day and at dusk Tengmalm’s Owls are singing.

We were out yesterday to enjoy the warmth and sunshine

and of course we made fire, cooked coffee and grilled sausage.