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CabinBuilder/Author
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You are all alone in the wilderness of Alaska. Not far from Fairbanks. And you got lost hiking in late October. The sky is clear and it'll probably be clear tomorrow. Soon it will be dark. Last night you noticed a crescent moon and you know that if you run a tangent line from the tips of the moon down to the horizon, that is due South. Besides with the sun up, you know the trick about marking the tip of a shadow, then 20 minutes later mark the tip again. This will give you a pointer that point due West. Which will confirm the moon's direction. So you're not worried about finding your way back for now. You can't be more than 5 miles from your vehicle. You just need shelter tonight and it would be nice to have food.

But the temperature is dropping fast. It's 28 degrees F now and will probably get down to 10 below tonight. All you have on you is your trusty Gerber LMC II survival knife and 1 wooden match. You're getting COLD.

You come upon a cabin in the woods and knock on the door. There is no answer. It's almost dark now and you notice the door is unlocked. You go inside.

It's just as cold inside. The cabin is very small, only about 10'x10'. Over in the corner you notice a bottle of Everclear and Kentucky bourban with 4 shot glasses and next to it are some hunting magazines. In another corner is a bed. In the middle is a table with a lone candle. There are some #10 cans of spaghetti, chicken ala king, and beef stew in the small pantry. And man are you hungry. You're not sure if you can hike 5 miles without some food. There's a 5 gallon container of water, but the water inside is mostly frozen.

There's a fireplace and plenty of firewood near. The fireplace is ready to light. There's paper at the bottom, dry kindling on top of that, small dry twigs on top of that and larger sticks on the top. The firewood near by is plenty to last the night. In a window sits a kerosene lamp with what looks like a fresh wick. Hmmmm, the candle, the fireplace, the kerosene lantern.

Knowing your survival depends on a correct decision as you may freeze tonight without heat... WHICH DO YOU LIGHT FIRST and WHY? Explain your reasoning. Put conjectures, guesses here on the thread, but if you KNOW you KNOW the answer, PM it to me.
 

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I would light the candle first, because I'm pretty sure it will easily take the flame and hold it while I try to light the fireplace.

But in reality, I wouldn't be bold enough to go hiking in Alaska with just a knife and one match.
 

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Agent of Influence
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I would light the candle first as i know it would be definitely lit with one match, the fireplace, only probably be lit with one match and the kerosene lamp may not be working properly, water in the fuel, badly fitted wick, who knows? It would be a chance.

The only certainty is the candle.

(now tell me why i am wrong! ;) )
 

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The Punisher
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-10 below.....child's play.:D: Check your PM box.
 

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PPG flyer
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I would tear up the magzines on to the fireplace,then douce with everclear,then light that first.
 

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why is everyone lighting the candle?!

obviously the best plan is to load the fireplace with more wood, pour the everclear on the wood in the fireplace, throw the match in there and it will be sure to light lol, you can light the candle and the lantern later with little sticks from the fireplace.
 

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Shuriken snowflake
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Drink a glass of bourbon and do the rest later.

And then wonder for a long time why all this was set up so properly, it just doesn't seem real! I'd look for tracks of someone being there recently, since that also would batter a lot. Maybe they'll come back soon. And why on earth didn't they leave any matches, when they set up a fireplace ready to light? That stuff could be damp as far as I know. So I don't start with it.

NO WAIT! I JUSSSST realized the right answer. SIGH!
 

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I hear the bagpipes
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I would have first checked the bottle of Everclear. If the bottle is not full of water instead, then soak some paper with it, and be ready to light it up under the fireplace pile of kindling after a draft is started with rolled up hunting mag pages that I would soak with the kerosene. After fire is built and the cabin is warm, you still have a candle, food, some hunting mags, water, and bourbon. So far, the cabin is beginning to look like a better option than going back to the car.
 

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I hear the bagpipes
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I don't know what Everclear is. Is it a drink or some sort of fuel?
It's grain alcohol, and it will not be frozen at 28F or even -10F. It it used to up the alcohol content of punches and drinks. In this case, it can be used as a fast burning fuel.
 

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Sadly enough, I am a smoker. I never carry matches but I do carry several disposable lighters, which would be of considerable utility, here.

I normally carry a Gerber Multi-plier and a top of the line multifunction Swiss Army knife, but I would be also carrying my combat knife, a .22 magnum Black Widow [in my bra] and a .44 magnum Super Blackhawk, with spare ammunition. The gunpowder in those big .44 magnum cartridges would be useful.

I would have at least some food with me.

I would be carrying a GPS receiver with me and a transceiver which would be tunable to at least one commonly used emergency frequency.

I am very innovative and determined. I would survive.
 

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making sure you have kerosene in that lamp i would lite it,it has less of a chance going out and it lights better in the cold
 

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It's not the liquid that burns, it's the fumes. If you pour it in the fireplace the fumes may get too diluted to combust.

K.I.S.S.

Light the candle.
 

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Agent of Influence
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It's not the liquid that burns, it's the fumes. If you pour it in the fireplace the fumes may get too diluted to combust.

K.I.S.S.

Light the candle.

On the other hand, a shot glass full of grain alcohol will light and burn with a consistent flame very easily.

I'd probably still stick with the candle, but it looks like as long as the match works there is more than one option here.

Just out of curiousity i am going to put a candle in the freezer now and try and light it when it is good and cold, i'll let you all know in a few hours.
 
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