The power of punk wood. When wood rots just right and becomes spongy, it is one of the most useful fire materials that you can get your hands on. A nice springy piece of punk wood will take a small ember and allow you to grow it or save it as needed. You have probably seen me using it for flint and steel char, but my favorite use is as a combination tinder bundle and coal extender.
In this case, I set up two pieces to block the wind, and sprinkled some punk dust onto a weak ember to build it up. Adding a bit more punk wood to the top turns it from a coal extender into a tinder bundle that will often easily produce a small flame to get your kindling going.
Using it in this way comes with a huge advantage of a backup ember that acts as insurance against losing the ember in the bundle, or your fire going out due to poor preparation. For this demonstration, I used some punk wood to get the flames up before adding a bit more and letting it smolder. These few little pieces burned for over fifteen minutes; even with a breeze blowing on it, and still produced a flame.
Even if you are using a conventional bundle, getting a piece of punk wood smoldering as a backup before transferring your ember into it is cheap insurance that has saved the day for me more than once.