Puff, Puff, Rake:

Elevating Your Smoke Nook

Written by Javay Frye-Nekrasova

Harvest Edition, 2024.

Can you feel it in the air? The leaves are changing, the air is getting crisper, the rain is chillier – fall is upon us, and with the turn of the season we have a tendency to stay indoors during our smoke sessions, but that doesn’t have to be the case. You can still connect with nature while enjoying the green goodness. It just takes a little creativity and preparation, especially with the Eugene rain. A great way to connect with nature is by enjoying the leaves by smoking in a leaf pile.

Create the Space
Before you can tune into the hum of nature, you have to prep your space. So head on out to your shed or the nearest hardware store and get yourself a rake––unless you are into the manual labor of picking up each leaf individually. You are going to rake together a leaf pile as big as your heart desires, or as large as you have enough leaves, preferably on dry days when it is easiest to rake.

Fire Safety
Though the goal is to smoke some greenery while enjoying the scenery. With that you have to be mindful that autumn leaves, especially when dry, can – and do – burn. To minimize chances of starting an unwanted fire, you are going to want to consider the mode of consumption. I would recommend avoiding pre-rolls, blunts, or spliffs. If you accidentally ash into the leaves, or suddenly experience a fallen “cherry,” the leaves may catch on fire. Bongs, pipes or edibles are probably the best way to go.

Maximize Comfort
Hanging in a leaf pile probably hasn’t interested you since you were young, but that doesn’t mean that it can’t be an amazing experience now. You can add some warmth to your leaf pile with a blanket. If the thought of climbing up and down from the ground has you weary, try building your leaf pile around an outdoor chair like a camping or an Adirondack chair. Grab a warm seasonal beverage like an apple cider or a pumpkin flavored drink to add to the fall feels. If you’re rich in leaf litter, you have the privilege of getting creative with your sculpture by creating a conversation pit, even if you’re talking with the crows.

Savor the Experience
Now that you have a luscious leaf pile and are in the headspace to commune with nature, enjoy it. Take in the colors of the changing leaves, let the wind whisper in your ear and listen to the crinkle of the leaves under your body. Fall is a time of change and death before rebirth; contemplate the things that you want to part with as we turn our own new leaf and prepare to hibernate.

Hanging in a pile of leaves might not have been where your mind went for enjoying the great outdoors, but if you enjoy fall, it is a logical choice. Remain conscious of your flames when in your leaf pile, the last thing you want is a disapproving look from Smokey the bear for starting a fire from the devil’s lettuce.