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anyone ever use Chaga mushroom as a firestarter?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by sullystull, Sep 21, 2009.

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  1. sullystull

    sullystull Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    WV Mountains
    Some guys I ride with have been collecting Chaga Mushrooms during our bike rides. Apparently, there are lots of medicinal uses to this thing. It looks like a chunk of charcoal and typically grows on Birch trees. They caught my attention when I read you could use it as a firestarter. Anyone ever hear of such a mushroom and actually use it as a firestarter? See link: http://www.survivaltopics.com/survival/the-chaga-natures-medicinal-mushroom/ or google it.

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  2. EDGE

    EDGE New Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Northeastern ND
    I've never heard of that particular fungus, but the use of various tree fungi as tinder is very ancient. Google the words "bracket fungus punk tinder" and you should find some interesting reading.
    I took a lot of language courses in college and ever since have been interested in the etymology of words. I believe that the words "sponge" (from Greek), fungus (Latin), spunk (from Gaelic), "punk" (of uncertain origin), "bong" and "bhang" (from Indic), and our English word "swamp" all stem from a single Indo-European root. It's a complex subject and I won't undertake a dissertation at midnight and having ingested more than one ale.
    Getting back to the use of fungi for tinder, I think that you would want to use a fungus broken from a dead tree. Fungi growing from a living tree will have sucked water from the tree and would not be useful in starting a fire.
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