Two birch-bark containers – cylindrical pots measuring 15 to 18 cm in diameter and approx. 20 cm high – were found near the mummy. They were made from a single piece of bark and stitched together with lime tree bast. The round piece of birch bark, which served as the base, was also stitched on.
The interior of one of the vessels was blackened and contained freshly picked Norway maple leaves and charcoal fragments. It is assumed that Ötzi wrapped charcoal embers in the leaves and carried them in the birch-bark container. In this way, the embers could be kept for several hours and fanned into fire in a few seconds.
Birch-bark containers are extremely light and robust. They are still made today in some parts of the world, for example in nearby Trentino, where knowledge of how to make them has survived as a traditional local craft.