The Shoelaces That Start a Fire

Credit: Courtesy rattlerstrap.com

What It Is: These extra-strong paracord shoelaces are built with an inch-long fire-starter ferro rod flint capped with rubber on each end. They can help start a fire when a lighter doesn't work, matches are wet, or you get caught outdoors unprepared. They start at 36 inches and go up to 108 inches. 

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Why We Like It: On a recent backpacking trip, the weather turned, and we ended up chillier than expected. We gathered some dry leaves and pine and fir needles. By striking our shoelace with the back of the steel blade of our pocketknife, we were able to light a campfire. RattlerStrap designed the laces so the rubber cap pulls off when you're ready to use the striker, and slips back on when you're done. And the shoelaces are extra strong and tough to wear out. You could even use them to hang a bear bag, splint an injury, or repair a pack strap.

Nitpick: The laces required a knife to get a spark. Rocks won't work. And they don't strike against each other. We wish RattlerStrap had designed a steel edge into one side of the laces, and put the ferro rod on the other side.

[$14; rattlerstrap.com]