A firewood carrier or log tote is a device used to carry small amounts of firewood into your home without leaving a trail of bark and dirt throughout your house.
Anyone who uses a wood stove or a fireplace has probably made countless trips carrying armloads of wood.
Even though your wood might be close to your house, you still need to get the firewood from an outside woodpile into your wood stove or fireplace.
What happens when you carry an armload of firewood through the house?
A trail of bark, twigs and dirt is usually left behind.
Plus, that armload of firewood usually leaves a little dirt or bark on your shirt as well.
To make carrying firewood easier and a lot cleaner, consider purchasing a carrier or tote.
The concept of a log carrier is pretty simple.
They're usually constructed of a polyester twill, canvas or leather and have an attached handle.
To use one, simply lay the carrier flat on the ground and stack your pieces of firewood inside.
Once it's full, grab the carrier by the handles and you're ready to go.
The totes work best for carrying small pieces of firewood that have already been split and are ready for use.
They're not really designed to carry full, unspilt logs.
After you unload the firewood inside you will see all of the bark is contained inside the tote.
To empty the tote, simply take it outside and shake it out or dump the mess into the trash.
One downfall to using a handle style bag is the strain or contortion it places on your lower back.
Unless you only place a few logs inside at a time, the weight of the firewood causes you to lean towards which ever side you're carrying the tote on.
Generally I find myself using two hands to grab onto the handles. I hold the tote in front of me, close to my chest to help distribute the weight.
It seems to work really well to keep the weight centered while walking.
If you're looking for a really nice firewood carrier that's designed to distribute the weight across your body, check out the WoodOX sling.
It's a little more expensive than the standard log tote, but the WoodOx sling functions more like a messenger bag, as opposed to the traditional firewood tote.
I really like how your arm slides into one end of the sling while the other end fits over your body.
This allows you to keep both hands free while easily carrying a full load of firewood.
The items mentioned above work great for small amounts of firewood that's already been split up making them easy to handle.
Although every wood stove or fireplace is different in terms of efficiency, I can usually heat my house for 24 hours on about 4 loads of wood brought up in one of the firewood carriers.
It's really not that much effort for a full days worth of heating, but if you want to bring up a couple of days worth of firewood, try using a Jet Sled.
I use my Jet Sled to haul just about everything.
Ice fishing equipment, deer and firewood all fit perfectly inside the sled.
This is a great winter option because you can pull a lot of weight with a little bit of snow on the ground.
I just pull mine up to the wood shed, fill it full of wood and drag it up to my covered back porch. It works perfectly!
They are a little expensive but I've had mine for almost 10 years and it's still looks and functions like new.
Since they're constructed out of rugged polyethylene with molded runners for strength and stability, these sleds will last a long time.
I wouldn't use one in a climate that doesn't receive a lot of snow.
They don't pull very well without snow and you'll probably wear a hole in the bottom of the sled on dry ground.
If you need to haul large, unspilt rounds of firewood from the woods to your home, I love using a garden cart.
A garden cart works great for hauling firewood because you can use your lawn tractor to pull it!
With a good quality garden cart, you'd be amazed just how much wood you can haul with a lawn tractor.
Last year I hauled my entire winter firewood supply with a garden dump cart.
Sure, it takes a little longer than a large 5x8 trailer but the smaller design of the tractor and trailer allowed me to drive right up next to the wood which saved me a lot of walking and a lot of energy.
If you get one with the dumping feature you can also use it for topsoil, rocks, leaves and a handful of other things around your house.
It really is a great investment and something I wish I had purchased years before.
Here's one piece of advice when using a firewood carrier.......don't overfill it!
We all like to get as much work done in as little time as possible, but over filling only adds extra stress on your body and the equipment.
Overall, a firewood tote can save a lot of time and energy.
Plus while you're heating your home with firewood, you'll love the fact that your floors or carpet remain clean and free from dirt and debris.