Pyro Putty and Survival: Is Your Bag Packing Heat?

Hunters, hikers, and other adventurers love their backpacks and gear bags. Whatever game they pursue, they boldly brandish their hunting pack. It’s like a bag of tricks. Items like skinning knives, flashlights, rope, water purifiers, and rangefinders come to mind, just to name a few. 

However, for many, it goes much deeper than that. Indeed, many tote items such as game calls, ammo, and smartphone accessories are now often included in packs. 

Smart outdoorsmen and women also carry items for first aid and survival. This is especially true for backcountry hunters and wanderers whose adventures are often more primitive and off the beaten path. 

While I hunt mainly on private land, I’ve long since gotten in the habit of packing a basic set of medical items such as aspirin, allergy medicine, bandages, antiseptic wipes. Also included in my preparedness stash are batteries, a hand-crank flashlight, and a rechargeable phone charging bank. Last but not least, my bag always includes a fire source – and this one has gone through some improvements over many seasons in the deer woods.

In fact, it has improved to the point that it weighs ounces, takes up mere inches, and never fails. I’ll get to that shortly.

The Necessity of Fire 

Controlled fire has been around for a long time. In fact, there is evidence of it dating back one million years. Whatever the case may be, it was no doubt a more laborious undertaking than it is today. 

As far as I know, no science book shows early man carrying a simple box of matches or a pocket lighter; much less a bottle of lighter fluid. Today, it’s much easier to establish a fire – from secluded wilderness areas to private hunting grounds. 

We all know that fire and heat provide comfort in the most normal of situations. However, uncomfortable, and even dangerous predicaments, can arise at a moment’s notice. Whether you are in the depths of remote public hunting areas or at camp near the hunting fire ring. Being readily able to build a fire is a good thing for sure. 

Practical Uses of Fire

First off, fire provides warmth. It cooks food, and can be used to purify water. 

It also can fend off animals if needed. It’s also a key element for coffee, but I digress. 

The fact is, a good fire-starting system will create comfort in the wild and just may save your life if things turn ugly.

 “Hope for the best and prepare for the worst”, as they say.

The use of Fire for Survival

As mentioned, it’s pretty simple to start a fire these days. That is, until any number of variables offset this seemingly “easy” feat. 

In the outdoors, the likes of wind and rain can create a barrier that no amount of lighter fluid or starter bricks can overcome. Even if they could, they take up way too much real estate in your pack. 

Building a fire requires three primary components; fuel, oxygen, and an ignition source. It all falls apart when any of these are compromised. What if your lighter fails or matches get wet? What about the inability to find dry kindling?

If you can spare a little space, it’s always a good idea to pack a little dry kindling.

In terms of survival, different excursions demand different packing lists. However, the unequivocal ability to create fire should be considered mandatory on all of them. So, err on the side of caution and pack a solid fire-starting system. Don’t just pack your favorite barbecue lighter and call it a day. As mentioned, there are too many circumstances that impede the fire-starting process.

Having spent a lot of time outdoors hunting, camping, and hiking, I grow weary of hauling grills, propane cookers, and fire-starting paraphernalia. Sure, they have their place, but luckily there is a much more efficient and seamless system that’s more logical for outdoorsmen that cover more ground on foot. 

The day I discovered Pyro Putty was a great one. I’ve since discovered that by packing a small amount of the flexible putty-like formula, I’m much better equipped to achieve comfort and survival via heat and flame all without the pain in my backside. 

A tin of Pyro Putty along with two good ignition sources fit in one hand.

Throw in a good fire-starting source such as a Ferro rod or arc lighter and I’m ready for anything mother nature throws at me.

The advantages of using Pryo Putty

Why Pyro Putty? First, a little story. 

The blood trail went cold. After a long search in the darkness and dropping temperatures, I was bewildered, frustrated, and bushed. What had started as a day trip had ended in an extensive tracking job for a buck I’d arrowed three hours earlier. I finally decided to back out and make the trek back to the truck. I would continue my search in the morning. The problem was, I had packed no real gear necessary for spending the night and the 2-hour drive seemed nonsensical – and I was cold. I also was in no condition to drive home. A fire and some rest was in order, but it wouldn’t be an easy undertaking. 

Ever been in a similar situation or worse? That wasn’t my first or my last time in a similar situation. While it wasn’t dire, a small portion of Pyro Putty and a simple ignition source in my backpack (or at least in the truck) would have gone a long way toward some needed comfort in the face of tenuous conditions and changing circumstances. 

It’s one thing to start a fire on a clear day, especially with propane. Many emergency situations occur during poor weather and in remote areas where you have to pack light.

What if it had been a real emergency?

No Moisture Woes

First off, Pyro Putty is waterproof. With a mere nickel to quarter-sized piece and an ignition source, you can achieve flame for about 15-minutes. This window is ample time to add kindling and ultimately larger pieces of wood. Pack a Ferro rod and striker in addition to a lighter and you’re in business. 

Packing Tip: Pack a zip-lock bag of dry kindling, such as twigs and leaves to add to your kit.

On the Lighter Side

Second, Pyro Putty is lightweight and takes up minimal space in your pack. This one is near and dear to the hunter and hiker’s heart, especially backcountry sportsmen and other adventure seekers. 

A regular tin of Pyro Putty is about the size of a snuff can, contains 2-ounces of putty, and can make about twenty fires. Their smaller tins and foil packs are half this size and weigh in at only .5-ounces. 

Pyro Putty is a compact fire-starting solution, but can be made even more so by storing it in a Pyro Putty Ferro rod.

Still too much weight? You can store enough Pyro Putty in the handle of your Pyro Putty regular or compact Ferro rod for the fires you would need on an outing.


During survival situations, stacking the odds in your favor is key. Pyro Putty is nothing if not flexible. 

While all blends work well, there are a variety of blends ideal for virtually any condition. 

For example, the Winter Blend is specifically made for cold conditions, meaning it maximizes success when you’re chilled to the bone. Conversely, the Summer blend is best suited for spring and summer settings. 

There are other custom blends as well. 

For good measure, the putty glows in the dark for trail marking, floats, and can even be used to make small tent repairs. 

Ounce for ounce, it’s hard to justify not including it.

A Lasting Solution

You know those old AA batteries or aspirin that have been in your pack since 2004? Unlike those handy members of your stash, you’ll never have to change out your Pyro Putty. This is good news when it comes to your preparedness stash. 

With an unlimited shelf life, the formula is always at-the-ready. 

Pyro putty backs this up with a No Questions Asked LIFETIME Guarantee. All you have to do is remember to pack it. Once you do, you’re good to go for the long haul. Dummy-proof, I like it.


While grills, propane cookers, charcoal, and lighter fluid may have their place at beach gatherings and family reunions, they’re overkill for the wandering outdoorsman. They’re not practical. Luckily there is a sweet spot sitting firmly between overpacking and lazily throwing in a book of matches. It comes in a small tin or foil pack and is easy to use. It will make for a more comfortable experience – and might just save your life during your next outdoor adventure. 

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