The Best Camping Hatchet (Guide) – 2016 Reviews

best camping hatchet review guideSummer is here, and if you’re a person who loves the outdoors, you know what that means: hiking and camping without fear of freezing to death. And what better way to top off all your preparation than by packing up a camping hatchet? As a matter of fact, hatchets are not just a luxury to add to your hitchhiking trip; they are a necessity.

The best camping hatchets are incredibly useful in any number of emergency situations, and knowing the different types and their various possible utilizations is a great way to keep yourself prepared for all kinds of scenarios.

Compare: The 10 Top Rated Camping Hatchets of 2016

What is a camping hatchet?

Camping hatchets (also known as camp axes) are a fantastic accessory to your camping packing essentials or camp cabin. Some are heavy and meant to be stationary, while others are lighter and perfect for carrying around with you if you are planning on camping outside.

The best camping hatchets are the perfect survival tool to have on hand in case of emergency; you can chop small pieces of wood for fire, hack big game if you are planning on eating by hunting, or simply keep it nearby to ward off potential enemies.

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What are the advantages?

Camping hatchets are an essential tool for all campers. Having one on hand offers you instant protection against dangerous animals and predators. It also provides you with an extra tool in case of an emergency – a way to chop up wood for fire and heat, a way to provide yourself with food by properly processing game. Owning a camping hatchet may very well be one of the smartest decisions you make before you begin exploring the great outdoors.

What are the different types?

While most camping hatchets serve the same general purpose, there are a few distinct types to keep in mind.

Tactical Camping Hatchets
Tactical axes have been an indispensable tool of survival and battle from centuries-old colonial battlegrounds to the soldiers of the Vietnam War, to the campers of today. Tactical axes are much lighter than their counterparts, and are normally the smarter choice in situations of combat or confrontation – whether with humans or dangerous animals out in the wild – as opposed to for chopping wood or killing game. Tactical axes are usually made with very straight handles, making them much easier to throw.

Ultimate Survival Camping Hatchets
These axes are specially made for camping and more serious outdoor usages and purposes. They are usually small and compact enough to make it substantially easier to store them with the rest of your hunting and camping tools; in fact, many can be physically carried in hand by the camper so as to always be within reach.

Many survival axes even serve a wide variety of uses, and often have thick grips and multipurpose handles that can be utilized as stake pullers, saws, or even hammers. These smaller camping hatchets are primed for efficiently chopping wood, hacking small game, or even building temporary makeshift shelters.

Utilitarian Camping Hatches
Your choice of camping axe can make or break even the lightest and most recreational of outdoor trips. These axes are usually built with the user’s comfort in mind, offering firm, non-slip grips and ideally coming with a variety of uses, much like its ultimate survival counterpart. They are also built to survive all sorts of weather and nature conditions. And they are the perfect hatchet for beginners who are not quite looking for a Bear Grylls outdoor experience, but would prefer to have a hatchet on hand anyway.

Choosing The Right Camping Hatchet

There are a multitude of things that you need to consider before you commit to purchasing a camping hatchet. Choosing the best camping hatchet is an essential part of every outdoor and camping experience, whether that is a fun family camping trip just a short drive outside of town or an actual survival experience out in the middle of the Appalachians.

One of the biggest concerns is where your camp axe is actually going to be stationed during your camping trip. Are you planning on carrying it with you, attached to your backpack? Or are you planning on camping in a stationary, more permanent area – such as a camp cabin? If so, you will likely be wanting to keep your axe indoors rather than out and about with you at all times.

You should also consider what you plan on doing with your axe, whether it be chopping wood, climbing steep cliff surfaces, or hunting big game.

You will also need to ensure that your hatchet is strong enough to endure all sorts of the crazy conditions that mother nature will throw at you.

The top 3 camping hatchets on the market

Yes4All Outdoor Camping Hunting Survival Steel Multi Functional Axe w/ Sheath H105 – This particular camping hatchet is built for the beginner outdoorsperson or axe-person. With a 3 5/8-inch stainless steel blade, total length of 11 5/8-inches, and total weight of 23 ounces, this hatchet carries a bit of weight without necessarily being the lightest in the market. Its handle is specially constructed to be skid-proof, and it even arrives with an optional magnesium fire starter to help you get started on all your outdoor adventures.

MTech USA Camping Axe, Two-Tone Blade, Black Rubberized Handle, 11-Inch Overall – This is a beautiful, compact, and extremely portable tactical camping hatchet that is perfect for those seeking a more rugged and intense outdoor experience. Coming with a three-inch steel blade and a gorgeous, stainless satin finish, it even arrives with a beautiful black sheath constructed of nylon to keep the blade out of harm’s way when it is not being utilized by the carrier. At just 11 inches long, 14.6 ounces in weight, this particular camping hatchet is perfect for beginners and pros alike.

Schrade SCAXE2L Survival 15.7 Inch Hatchet – This is yet another truly beautiful specimen, and is one of the best camping hatchets built for the professional or experienced outdoorsman. Constructed with a head made of stainless steel and a hammer pommel, this is the perfect multivariable hatchet. Its black glass fiber handle comes swaddled in a comfortable grip made of rubber, with a 6.8 inch handle and 4.2 inch blade. It arrives with a lanyard that rests inside the handle, as well as a sharpening stone in a sheath crafted from polyester. At 15.7 inches long and 3.2 pounds, this is a heftier axe made for more heavy duty tasks.

Considerations when selecting a camping hatchet

Price
This should be the most obvious. You want to purchase a camping hatchet that gives you the most bang for your buck while also performing all of the functions that you need it to. For first-time hatchet purchasers who are hesitant to spend large amounts of money, you may want to consider purchasing cheaper hatchets from well-trusted brands. On the other hand, professional campers and outdoorsmen may be prepared to drop more cash on bigger, sturdier, and more multipurpose hatchets.

Weight
How the camping hatchet feels in your hand should also be a top priority. You don’t want it to be too heavy, especially if you are planning on carrying it with you on your expeditions. On the other hand, you may feel more comfortable with a heftier axe – particularly if you know you will be leaving it a cabin and not carrying it around all the time, or if you know that you will be chopping wood or processing larger game animals to cook.

Durability
Knowing how your camping hatchet is going to hold up in dire straits is an equally important factor to consider before purchasing one. You want an axe that won’t rot when left out in the rain or whose blade won’t easily dull. Estimating in advance how much time your hatchet will be spending outside is key. For instance, if you know that you will camping in rainy or near wet areas, you may want to avoid axes built with a wooden blade to avoid wetness.

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Price

Yes4All Outdoor Camping Hunting Survival Steel Multi Functional Axe w/ Sheath H105

The Yes4All Survival Steel is certainly on the cheaper end of the three, this is the perfect axe to buy for the beginner camper or axe-person without making a large investment.

MTech USA Camping Axe, Two-Tone Blade, Black Rubberized Handle, 11-Inch Overall

This is the cheapest axe of them all, and very versatile for the price.

Schrade SCAXE2L Survival 15.7 – Inch Hatchet

This axe is one of the more expensive on the market due to its multitude of accessories and larger size.

Weight

Yes4All Outdoor Camping Hunting Survival Steel Multi Functional Axe w/ Sheath H105

This is the second lightest of the three at 23 ounces. That allows it to maintain some heft for certain tasks without being too heavy or too light.

MTech USA Camping Axe, Two-Tone Blade, Black Rubberized Handle, 11-Inch Overall

At 14.6 ounces, this is an extremely light blade. It is perfect for both pros and beginners who prefer their axes light and will not be performing any heavy chopping tasks.

Schrade SCAXE2L Survival 15.7 – Inch Hatchet

Weighing in at 3.2 pounds, this is certainly a very heavy blade. However, it arrives with a multitude of accessories that add to its weight. This is the best camping hatchet for more taxing tasks.

Durability

Yes4All Outdoor Camping Hunting Survival Steel Multi Functional Axe w/ Sheath H105

While this particular axe is very durable, it is certainly less so than its two counterparts. It nylon sheath, however, should keep the blade protected and sharp when not in use.

MTech USA Camping Axe, Two-Tone Blade, Black Rubberized Handle, 11-Inch Overall

Its small, compact nature makes it easy to keep hidden from the elements, and its rubber-and-steel build will keep it from rotting.

Schrade SCAXE2L Survival 15.7 – Inch Hatchet

This one wins by a landslide. Its sharpening tool in particular will allow you to keep the blade sharp and useful for years to come.

Conclusion: Our Camping Hatchet Review

Best Cheap – MTech USA Camping Axe, Two-Tone Blade, Black Rubberized Handle, 11-Inch Overall

MTech USA Camping Axe, Two-Tone Blade, Black Rubberized Handle, 11-Inch OverallIt’s cheaper than most meals at a casual dining restaurant, and perfect for both professionals and beginners alike.

Pros:

Great affordable camping hatchet for all demographics and expertise levels.

Cons:

May be too light for many users.

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Best Value – Yes4All Outdoor Camping Hunting Survival Steel Multi Functional Axe w/ Sheath H105

Yes4All Outdoor Camping Hunting Survival Steel Multi Functional Axe Sheath H105A relatively affordable, light hatchet with no frills.

Pros:

Light without being too light or too heavy, and great for beginners who just want an axe without the fuss of multiple accessories and tools.

Cons:

No comfort-oriented grip.

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Best Overall – Schrade SCAXE2L Survival 15.7 – Inch Hatchet

Schrade SCAXE2L Survival 15.7-Inch HatchetWhile certainly expensive, the Schrade SCAXE2L offers a lot for the price – including its vast multitude of accessories.

Pros:

It arrives with a sharpening stone, an in-handle lanyard, and enough weight to carry out large tasks – the perfect camping hatchet for the rugged outdoorsman.

Cons:

It is a lot of money to pay for a hatchet.

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With a little research and a knowledge of your budget, your expertise levels, and the conditions in which you will be using this axe… you should be well on your way to purchasing the best camping hatchet for your needs!