A few years ago, while we were exploring Colorado in our old Scout, we set up camp at the isolated and vacant Duck Creek campground in the shadow of Mt. Evans west of Denver. Overnight, a surprise springtime snowfall blanketed the area in 4 inches of the white stuff. As we crawled out of our tent in the morning and stood in the resulting wonderland, we became painfully aware of two things. One, we needed a fire immediately so we could warm up; and two, we needed to start our camp stove for breakfast. Unfortunately, neither of those things was going to happen because our waterproof matches turned out to not be so waterproof.
What we didn't have was a Windmill Delta Shockproof Series Lighter. We know what you're thinking. A lighter is a lighter. That's what we thought too, but we quickly found that in the world of lighters, these little butane wonders are the equivalent of a 2 1/2-ton Rockwell axle.
The outside of the unit is encased in a tough elastomer armor that allows it incredible impact resistance. It is fitted with five O-ring seals and a stainless-steel wire closure to provide water-resistance in the stormiest weather conditions. It uses a piezoelectric ignition that eliminates the need for batteries or flints, which tend to fail when they get wet. And the company says that laboratory testing shows that the piezoelectric system is good for more than 30,000 ignitions. It is windproof, and can withstand 70-80 mph winds while providing a high-temp, 2,000-degree Fahrenheit flame. The unit is designed for one-handed operation, has a simple flame adjuster, an at-a-glance fuel window and is completely refillable. For hikers, there is an optional lanyard so it can be worn around the neck.
A Delta Shockproof Series lighter is now a part of our camping and off-highway supplies-and it works really well at concerts, too.