After you buy bud in Terrace, BC, your first idea is to smoke it, right? While there are lots of enjoyable ways to smoke marijuana, there are many other methods of consuming cannabis. Some are new and some are ancient – check out this guide to learn about different ways of getting to your happy place.
Smoking marijuana is a classic go-to for instantly reaping the rewards of reefer. The high is almost instantaneous, and the process of preparing to smoke can become a calming ritual.
Marijuana can be smoked many different ways:
Smoke a Joint
Joints are one of the most fun ways to smoke weed. Whether rolled on the spot or pre-rolled for later, the process of rolling up a doobie builds pleasant anticipation for the act of smoking.
You will need marijuana, a grinder, rolling papers, and a thick piece of paper to roll into a filter (optional).
Start with busting up your weed, preferably in a grinder, to get a consistent texture. Pick out any stem bits, as they’ll poke holes in your papers that will affect your smoke.
Hold the paper with the sticky strip facing you on the far side. If you’re using a filter, place it at the end opposite of your dominant hand. Generously sprinkle the weed evenly along the fold of the paper, then roll the paper back and forth, using your thumbs to guide the rolling. Your goal is to roll the weed together without compressing it too much.
When the weed becomes a uniform log, it’s time to roll it up! Starting with the corners, tuck the edge of the paper closest to you over the little log and roll it up towards the sticky strip. Give the strip a lick, finish the roll, and voila! You have a joint. Light the end opposite the filter and smoke as you please.
Rolling joints definitely takes practice. If you just can’t hack it, pre-rolled joints are available for purchase in many delicious varieties.
Smoke a Pipe
Packing a pipe is just about the easiest and most efficient way to smoke cannabis. Simply bust the weed up and gently pack it into the bowl of the pipe. With your thumb on the choke, put a flame to the bowl and gently inhale until the weed starts to burn. Let it develop a bit of an ember, or a “cherry”, then remove your thumb from the choke and inhale the smoke. Repeat as needed!
Smoke From a Bong
This is a great way to get high swiftly if time is of the essence. Bongs come in all kinds of fancy forms, but the basic concept is the same: using water as a filter for the smoke. This cools the smoke and makes for a smoother inhale – which is convenient when you’re taking huge rips!
To smoke from a bong, fill it with water until the first 1 – 1½ inches of the down stem – that is, the piece of the bowl that reaches towards the bottom of the bong – is covered. Feel free to give a little “dry test” before adding any weed. The water should gently bubble on your inhale.
When the water level is satisfactory, bust up your bud and put it in the bowl. Place the mouthpiece over your mouth, run a flame over the bowl, and begin to inhale. The tall chamber will fill with smoke. If this is your first time using a bong, don’t let the chamber get too full! When you’re ready, remove the bowl completely from the bong and inhale to bring all the smoke into your lungs. Sit back and let that settle in before taking another hit!
With both pipes and bongs, be sure to clean them often to avoid burning and inhaling excess carcinogenic material. Empty the water from your bong between each session.
Commonly referred to as “vaping”, this is a more modern form of consuming cannabis. Vaporizing works on the theory of heating marijuana at a low temperature so as to not actually burn it. The THC then becomes a vapor and is inhaled. It is arguably healthier than smoking marijuana, as it spares your lungs from the harsh smoke.
Vaporizers (”vapes”) have shrunk to pocket-sized devices in recent years, which is convenient for many reasons: subtlety, traveling, ease of use, etc. To use a vape, firstly make sure it’s charged – there’s nothing sadder than loading a bowl only for your device to die on you halfway through a session!
Load the bowl according to the instructions, packing it ever so gently. Wait until the device is ready (often signified by a green light), then gently draw. You won’t see much smoke when you exhale, but you should taste the marijuana.
Most vapes time out in accordance with the size of the bowl, but you can turn it off sooner if you’re done, or click it back on if you feel like there’s still more to toke. Clean the bowl often for maximum efficiency.
One of the most ancient forms of cannabis is hashish, commonly referred to as hash. Long story short, hash is the resin made by collecting only the crystals that grow on mature marijuana buds. It can either be mechanically pressed into blocks or hand-rolled, but in the end it’s all a similar substance – a sticky, potent goldmine of pure cannabis goodness.
Hash can either be smoked, vaped, or ingested (more on edibles to come). To smoke hash, take a small nug (whole or broken into small pieces) and tuck it into the bowl of a pipe or a bong – smoke as you would marijuana. Hash can also be mixed with marijuana and/or tobacco and rolled into joints. Keep in mind that hash is more potent than marijuana; always start with a little and work your way up.
Ingesting cannabis is fantastic for many reasons: it’s subtle, it’s tasty, and it’s long-lasting. It’s particularly great if you have a lung condition, or even if you’re sick and want to give your respiratory tract a break.
The best edibles are those from a dispensary. Portions are labeled with accurate dosages, which is hard, if not impossible, to do with homemade edibles. Manufactured edibles come in all kinds of delicious forms: chocolate, gummies, lollipops, and so on. Pick what appeals to you and gobble up!
Tolerance can vary greatly from person to person. It’s a good idea to start small and work your way up if you’re new to edibles. A small but effective dose for first-timers would be in the ballpark of 1 – 2.5 mg of THC per dose. Remember that edibles take about half an hour to come into effect, and up to four hours to peak.
There are also non-food forms of marijuana that can be consumed orally. Tinctures, capsules, and oils, often referred to as concentrates, are often chosen for more medicinal purposes. Marijuana tea is a pleasant and relaxing way to enjoy cannabis on the go. Alternatively, marijuana honey can be stirred into any regular tea to give it a little somethin’ extra.
Hash As An Edible
Hash can also be consumed orally, though prepared hash edibles are less common. If you’ve already got a handle on the potency of your hash, you can slowly melt an appropriate amount in some butter and use it in cooking or baking. Be sure not to munch out on your loaded creations after it kicks in!
Time to Choose Your Own Cannabis Adventure!
There are pretty well as many ways to consume cannabis as there are varieties of the plant itself. While this list isn’t exhaustive, it’s enough to get you going. Enjoy experimenting to find what’s right for you!