How to Pack a Bowl

How to load a bowl

Most people learn how to smoke from a pipe before anything else. By far the most common type of smoking accessory, pipes or bowls come in a range of different shapes, sizes and designs – all while serving the main goal of providing an easy way to smoke cannabis. Despite their prevalence, many people are confused when it comes to the best way to load your bowl. After writing the wildly popular how to pack a one hitter article, I've received quite a few questions regarding the specifics of how to pack a bowl. Everyone wants to get the most bang for their buck, and these tips can help you get the best rip from your bowl. To really stretch your stash, check out my article about blazing on a budget while still getting high.

First and foremost, you can’t just slam a nug into your bowl and expect a smooth hit. I recommend you acquire a grinder. Your cannabis will burn more evenly and it will make it easier to corner the bowl out of respect for others. Here are the step-by-step instructions and photos showing how to pack a bowl.

  1. Grind and Collect the Material

    Place your Grinder Card and on top of an open Pebble container.  Gently rub the cannabis buds on the surface of the grinder card. Feel free to use your 4-piece grinder as well – ANYTHING is better than hand-crumbled buds. The key here is a fine, even grind.

  2. Pack Gently

     how to load a bowl

    Slowly squeeze the contents of the Pebble into your bowl, periodically packing the cannabis into the bowl with your fingers. The goal is not to pack the bowl too loose or too tight. You want the ground bits evenly packed in the bowl, but not pressed down so hard that it's difficult to draw on the pipe. You can do a quick airflow check before lighting. The perfect pack results in a bowl that stays lit and is easy to inhale. Pro Tip: some people like to place one larger chunk into the bowl first to act as a screen, preventing the possibility of Scooby snacks.

  3. Remember the Carb

    carb cap bowl

    You know that weird little hole on the side of nearly every pipe or bowl? Yep, that's a carb. This hole either allows or prevents fresh air from being drawn through the pipe. When you inhale, you should have the carb covered, and when you clear, you should remove your finger from the carb.

  4. Light and Inhale

    Cornering the bowl

    Once your bowl has been packed, slowly ignite the cannabis closest to edge of the bowl and begin to inhale. This will corner the bowl at first, and ultimately create a cherry, allowing you to smoke the remainder of the cannabis in the bowl with minimal lighter use. I recommend a slow, smooth inhale and exhale to avoid unnecessary respiratory irritation.

  5. Clear the bowl

    After the entirety of the bowl has been smoked, you can blow out the ash or gently tap the bowl against your palm. This does not always work, which is why we suggest always carrying a poker. Whether it’s a dabber, paper clip, toothpick, or dedicated poker, it’s an important tool for airflow management. Be sure to check out my full tutorial on how to clean and sanitize your smoking supplies for airport travel.

  6. Stow for Later

    how to pack a bowl

    Are you ready to retire your outdated dugout? These smoking kits will completely replace your old dugout that lacks room for a poker, lighter, grinder, and the ability to carry multiple strains.

Common Questions 

What if I don’t have a grinder to pack my bowl?

Carry a grinder card! They are so slim and discreet you could carry it in your wallet – or your Safety Case of course!

How tight should I pack the bowl?

There is a sweet spot for every bowl. It’s a balance of staying lit and maintaining airflow – depth and width of the bowl-piece itself plays a big role. Try both ends of the spectrum, loose and tight, then it will be easy to find the perfect pack for you!

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