While bags of kindling can easily be bought, they can be quite expensive. It is easy
to make your own kindling, either by splitting a log into little pieces or by gathering
fallen twigs and sticks while out walking.
The best sticks are Beech, Hazel, Elm, Hawthorn, Ash – almost any sticks will do
as long as they are dry. Pine sticks and cones work well too.
Swinging a hand axe at a small piece of wood that you are holding to make your kindling
is obviously dangerous – your fingers are too precious! So perhaps try one of two
safer techniques. The piece of wood to be split can be held in place on the chopping
block with a ‘sissy stick’ – that is a stick just long enough to get your steadying
hand out of the way of the hand axe. Or try a full sized axe, but hold it near the
head so that you are using the axe’s weight, not its speed, to split the wood.