Ben C. and his 13-year old son were hiking in San Diego County when they became lost in Borrego Palm Canyon and were unable to find their way out.
According to Ben, “It was just too dangerous to try and make any more ground that night and by that time we were out of water and we were out of food.”
The father and son had gone hiking off trail, climbing up a nearby ridge. Ben said he thought it would be easy to “take another ridge down.” However, it was easier said than done and the pair soon found themselves stranded.
Fortunately, there was cell service and Ben was able to call his wife, who then called the sheriff’s department. Luckily, the father-son duo had a lighter, which helped them to start a small fire to keep warm.
In addition, the fire they started with the lighter also helped deputies spot the pair by their campfire after receiving the distress call.
Even though the father and son were found by a search and rescue helicopter they were forced to spend the night outdoors because it was too dangerous for a helicopter rescue.
The following morning deputies were able to reach them and lead them out of the canyon to their campsite.
The father admitted he was a bit embarrassed about the incident. He told local media he runs a resort in Death Valley National Park and is an experienced hiker who should have known better.
“None the less, the incident served as a great lesson on being prepared,” he said.
Now, I probably don’t need to remind you, but having a lighter as part of your survival gear is a must. Whether you are camping, hiking, or just become stranded somewhere, having a way you start a fire is critical.
Not only will a fire keep you warm but it may be your only way to cook food, and will also help searchers find you if you are stranded in a remote location.
Considering how essential a lighter is, I want to share with you some good options when it comes to a survival lighter.
Zippos. An American classic, Zippo lighters have long been a favorite of U.S. military personal for their durability. They are tough as nails and are typically made of metal or brass.
In addition, Zippo lighters come with a lifetime warranty and are refillable. Lastly, the Zippo design makes them windproof so they will stay lit even in harsh weather.
Even though Zippo’s aren’t waterproof you can simply carry them in a small waterproof container.
lcfun Explorer Lighter. The Ifcun Explorer is a windproof, waterproof, arc electric lighter that is great for emergencies. It’s a flameless lighter that is lightweight, durable and will even light when wet.
The internal lithium-ion battery eliminates the need for liquid fuel and it can easily be recharged via any USB port using the included cord.
It can also be used at all altitudes without requiring oxygen intake adjustment. Plus, it’s made with an impact resistant ABS Zinc alloy case, and the windproof flame can withstand winds up to 80 mph.
Delta Stormproof Lighter. The Delta Stormproof Lighter is a butane lighter designed to work up to 30,000 times, even when wet. The rugged design withstands 80 mph winds, making it an ideal option for nearly any weather condition.
This lighter is incredibly durable with an impact resistant casing that makes it tough, even if it’s at bottom of your bug out bag.
Additionally, a fuel capacity window allows you to monitor your fuel levels so you know when best to refill so you don’t run out of fuel.
The lighter features a stainless steel wire closure to help ensure that the lighter is rust and corrosion resistant. An O-ring seals the lighter to keep it resistant from rain, snow and any other moisture.
Whatever type of lighter or fire starter you choose to go with, just remember to get more than one so you always have a backup.