No Lighter? No Problem, with These 5 Best Fire Starters


There are few things more important on any outdoors trip than the ability to create fire. It’s going to dictate everything on your adventure from comfort to sheer survival (not to mention cooking the day’s catch). To help you out, we’ve rounded up five of the best fire starts for the backyard and the back country.

Zippo Emergency Fire Starter – $12

Zippo Emergency Fire Starter

There’s probably not a more recognizable name in lighters than Zippo. With more than 80 years in the business, they know how to make fire starters that last. This brightly colored lighter uses pre-packaged tinder sticks to get a fire going with a minimal spark. It’s a nicely confined waterproof and floatable package that will be ready time and time again.

Related: How to Build a Fire Anywhere

Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel 2.0 Army with Emergency Whistle – $13

Light My Fire Swedish FireSteel 2.0 Army with Emergency Whistle

If it’s good enough for the Swedish Department of Defense, it’ll be good enough for you. This strike starters works at just about any altitude, whether wet or dry. At 5,400°F, it has one of the hottest spark temperatures on the market too. This edition is built to last up to 12,000 sparks, meaning it’s going to be a long-lasting addition to your trekking pack.

UST BlastMatch Fire Starter – $17

UST BlastMatch Fire Starter

Fire is just a click away with this easy-to-use gadget. A custom flint material is spring loaded to strike against the interior of the handle for a direct spark. It’s designed for at least 1,000 ignitions with an added safety mechanism that only allows a spark with a press of the thumb. For three times the heat of a standard match, it doesn’t get much easier. Plus, its tiny size hardly adds any weight to your trail-pack.

Related: Solo Stove: The Only Backyard Fire Pit You’ll Ever Need

Exotac nanoStriker XL Ferrocerium Fire Starter – $26

Exotac nanoStriker XL Ferrocerium Fire Starter

Our most portable option comes in at just over 4” long and a 1/4 “ thick. It burns at nearly 5,500°F and has a replaceable interior rod. It’s lightweight body is a handsomely finished aluminum and is, of course, waterproof. It’s also our most expensive option, but the pure portability is worth it.

Infinite Electric Flameless Dual Arc Plasma Lighter – $17

Infinite Electric Flameless Dual Arc Plasma Lighter

For those interested in a purely electric option, you can’t go wrong with this USB-powered model. The lighter connects directly into any port and charges in two hours for a week of regular use. It uses a concentration of two plasma beams to light cigarettes, candles or just about anything else you need. For a tailgate or weekend away with the RV, it doesn’t get much better.