Gear Guide: Camp Hatchets for Any Camping Trip
The Perfect Camp Tool
There are few tools in a camping kit more versatile than a hatchet. Even better than a Swiss Army Knife or one of your fancy multitools (which are admittedly really handy), a hatchet has a multitude of upsides that make it a must-have for any camping trip. There are a lot of different types of hatchets out there, so we’ve put together a list of camp hatchets that will do for any camping trip—whether you’re glamping or really roughing it.
Why Buy a Camp Hatchet?
Hatchets have a ton of usefulness out in the wilderness. In fact, if you’ve read the eponymous young adult novel Hatchet by Gary Paulsen, you know full well that a hatchet alone can save your life if you’re stuck out in the deep woods after a plane crash. That aside, a hatchet really does prove itself to be a very useful tool
Why a hatchet and not an axe? A hatchet is smaller, lighter, and can be handled easily with one hand. You may not be able to fell a tree, But you can chop plenty of smaller limbs to help keep your fire blazing.
Cut and Hack
These two actions are the main thing a hatchet was made for: to cut and hack at things. The sharp blade and easy swinging ability make it easy to lop off limbs of trees, branches, sticks, or hack at roots and other tough-to-get-rid-of kinds of obstructions.
Hammer and Pound
Flip most hatchets around and you’ve got yourself a handy little driving tool. Pound tent stakes into the ground, or hammer loose something on your RV that’s grown stuck over time.
A dutch oven is a really handy camp cooking tool. Of course, once it’s in the middle of your coals, it’s less difficult to get out. You can always use a heavy stick, but a hatchet makes a perfect handle that’s just long enough to keep your hand out of harm’s way.
Whether it’s a beverage or a can of tinned meat, a hatchet pops a bottle camp as well as any bottle opener. Getting into a can of tuna, on the other hand, might be a little trickier. But if you keep after it, you’ll get into it.
Best Camp Hatchets for Any Camping Trip
Gerber Freescape Hatchet
- Length: 17.3 inches
- Weight: 32.6 ounces
- MSRP: $55.00
Gerber is no stranger to the world of blades. As the makers of some of the world’s best knives, it should come as no surprise that they don’t slouch when making a hatchet either. The Freescape Hatchet has a forged steel head that means strength, and it’s also coated in a substance to help reduce its friction—which lets you chop away all the more. Even better, it comes with a lifetime warranty, because Gerber believes in its blades.
SOG VooDoo Hawk Mini
- Length: 12.5 inch
- Weight: 23.1 ounces
- MSRP: $59.95
Technically more a tomahawk than a hatchet, this SOG blade is still clearly a high-performing tool. Compact and light, its head extends beyond that of many other hatchets for easier cutting in tighter applications. While other hatchets you’ll find here have the flat driving side, the VooDoo Hawk actually comes with a spike, for any time you need to pierce something—or find a solid hold in something you might be climbing.
Estwing Sportsman’s Axe
- Length: 14 inches
- Weight: 30.2 ounces
- MSRP: $59.95
If there’s one quintessential hatchet out there, it’s without a doubt the Estwing Sportsman’s Axe. It has no frills and doesn’t win any awards for fancy design, but it doesn’t need them, because this is a proper hatchet. Instead, you’ll find a perfectly balanced, one-piece, metal-forged head and handle for easy swinging. A leather-wrapped handle gives you plenty of grip, and it chops for days. This is the kind of hatchet you can hand down to your kids one day—and trust us, they’ll be excited.
Off-Grid Tools Survival Axe
- Length: 11 inches
- Weight: 24 ounces
- MSRP: $49.99
Multitools don’t just come in handy, pocket-sized, foldable forms, you know. The Off Grid Tools Survival Axe is a hatchet and a half. And let’s start with the hatchet blade, which can be easily resharpened when necessary but is otherwise perfect for chopping and hacking. On the flip side, you’ll find a hammerhead and claw. Folding into the handle is a six-inch bi-metal saw blade. There’s a seat belt cutter, hex sockets in standard and metric, and a gas valve wrench. It really doesn’t matter where camping. If you find yourself in a sticky situation, this is the hatchet to have on you.
Fiskars X7 Hatchet
- Length: 14 inches
- Weight: 22.6 ounces
- MSRP: $36.99
Both sharp-looking and sharp-cutting, the Fiskars X7 Hatchet is exceptionally well-balanced too. But it shines when it comes to chopping. It’s precisely machined V-shaped wedge drives easily into wood and splits it more easily than other axes. It’s a beauty of a hatchet too, with a pure black blade and options in your handle of either black or orange—which also features a textured, non-slip grip.
Coleman Camp Axe
- Length: 13 inches
- Weight: 30.4 ounces
- MSRP: $25.99
Coleman is synonymous with camping. So it’s no surprise that the Coleman Camp Axe is a perfectly suitable hatchet to have in your kit. In fact, it’s also one of the most affordable, making it a great deal for just how good of a blade this is. It’s exceptionally efficient at chopping through small logs and breaking up kindling. This hatchet is no-frills, but it comes with a very comfortable rubber grip that you’ll appreciate after you’ve been chopping for a bit. While the blade may need sharpening pretty regularly, this is still a workhorse of a hatchet.