Get a Handle on Your Campsite: Pick The Best Camping Axe

Planning an outdoor camping trip and don't know what gear to bring? You can't go wrong with a good camping ax. So whether you're planning a weekend getaway or an extended expedition, bring one of these along! In this article, we will review some of the best axes available on the market today.

Planning an outdoor camping trip and don't know what gear to bring?

Don't worry, you can't go wrong with a good camping ax. So whether you're planning a weekend getaway or an extended expedition, be sure to bring one of these bad boys along! In this article, we will review some of the best axes available on the market today.

Not only are camping axes great for splitting wood, but they can also come in handy for other tasks such as building a shelter or creating a fire. With so many uses, it's no wonder that axes are such an important piece of camping gear.

Keep reading this article to learn more about the best axes and select the one that best suits your needs!

How We Picked The Best Camping Axe For You

You need an axe for camping, but there are so many to choose from. How do you know which one is the best for you?

It can be tough to pick the right camping axes. Do you go for a small hatchet that's easy to carry around, but might not be as powerful? Or do you go for a full-sized axe that might be too heavy to lug around all day?

We've done the hard work for you and chosen the best camping axes based on user feedback. Our top picks are lightweight enough to carry around all day, but still, pack a punch.

We know you want the best, so we work hard to provide it. Our team of experts is constantly selecting products for our site that meet high standards and offer great value too! Our opinions are based on independent trials and tests but as an Amazon Associate, we earn from some qualifying purchases. This helps us to keep the site running without costing anything extra for you.

Best Overall Axe

Gerber 17.5-Inch Freescape Hatchet

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Why You Will Love It

If you are looking for the most versatile and reliable axe on the market, Look no further than the Gerber Freescape Hatchet. This evolutionary axe features efficient strength in a slim profile, making it perfect for every challenge you throw at it, well unless you think of felling trees with this!

It also has new friction-minimizing PTFE coating on the blade and a unique grind technique, the steel blade is sharper than ever, making clean cuts a breeze.

The included sheath protects the blade when not in use, and the limited warranty ensures that you can purchase with confidence.  So whether you're chopping kindling or tackling a backpacking trip, this hatchet is up for the task.

What You Should Know

Length - 17.5 in

Weight - 2.06lbs.

Blade Material - Carbon Steel

The Gerber 17.5-Inch Freescape Hatchet can handle even the toughest splitting. Forged in Finland from high-quality steel, this durable hatchet is designed to withstand even the most difficult chopping tasks.

The composite handle is extremely lightweight and features a soft-touch over mold for added comfort and ease of use. And the low-friction blade coating makes it easy to slice through wood at a greater-than-average depth.

Plus, the shock-absorbing layer on the shaft helps reduce hand fatigue. And the long handle provides increased leverage, making it easier to chop through thick branches or even small trees.

So whether you're chopping kindling or clearing brush, the Gerber 17.5-Inch Freescape Hatchet is up to the task.

Gerber 17.5-Inch Freescape Hatchet Can Bear It All
Gerber 17.5-Inch Freescape Hatchet Can Bear It All

What Could Have Been Better

Don’t let the hatchet word fool you – this is not a single-handed small camping hatchet in reality. The Freescape is designed for two-handed use, and it’s still quite heavy for some people.

Also, if you’re looking for a more lightweight option for your backpacking needs, you should opt for the Gerber Pack Hatchet (check price) which is much smaller and lighter than the Freescape.

But overall, with its versatile design and durable construction, the Gerber 17.5-Inch Freescape Hatchet is a great choice for any camper or outdoorsman.

Best Single Piece 

Estwing Sportsman’s Axe

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Why You Will Love It

The Estwing Sportsman’s Axe is the perfect tool for all your outdoor needs. Made in the USA from one piece of solid American steel, this axe is built to last. It comes with a genuine leather grip and a heavy-duty nylon sheath, making it easy to carry on your belt.

The balance of this is great and the cleverly designed angles will make sure that you don't even notice the Estwing on your hip. The perfectly contoured leather washers surround the handle, providing a comfortable grip while the solid weight of the axe reassures you of its quality.

With its versatile design and superior craftsmanship, the Estwing Sportsman’s Axe is an essential addition to your camping gear.

What You Should Know

Length - 13.5 in

Weight - 1.86 lbs.

Blade Material - Carbon Steel

The Estwing Sportsman’s Axe is a great choice for anyone in the market for a new camping axe. It’s well-made and designed for a variety of tasks around the campsite, and it’s affordably priced.

The sharp alloy steel blade is perfect for performing delicate tasks like whittling wood, delimbing branches, or even in your food prep! The 14" length offers a little more leverage to boost strike power and make up for the lighter weight of the head.

The Sportsman's axe also has a square butt that is perfect for nailing tent stakes through the ground, or for other general hammering purposes. Whether you're looking to chop wood for starting a campfire, or just need a multipurpose tool to help you with some basic tasks, the Estwing Sportsman's Axe is a great option.

Estwing Sportsman’s Axe Features
Estwing Sportsman’s Axe Features

What Could Have Been Better

The only complaint about the Estwing Sportsman’s Axe is the balance. The head and blade seem heavy compared to the handle, and when you’re holding the hatchet still it feels ready to tip over out of your grip. However, this imbalance actually helps to generate force that can easily eat through wood.

The handle is also super smooth, which can slide around in your grip uncomfortably. Gloves are always a safe choice. Many users have suggested sanding away the lacquered coating and applying coat after coat of Neatsfoot oil.

This will help to protect the leather grip and make it more comfortable to hold. Sportsman is great for backcountry camping and chopping firewood but if you need something heavy-duty for larger logs you can try their Estwing 16" Camper's Axe.

Overall, the Estwing Sportsman’s Axe is a great choice for anyone in the market for a new camping axe.

Best With Wooden Handle

Husqvarna 13′ Wooden Handle Hatchet

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Why You Will Love It

This no-nonsense and practical camping hatchet axe is built from quality materials that you can be sure to last a lifetime and features a hand-forged head with a curved, hickory handle. Plus, it comes complete with a leather sheath for easy transport.

Whether you're chopping kindling for a campfire or dealing with some other task, this Husqvarna hatchet will get the job done quickly and efficiently. And when you're not using it, you can admire its classic good looks.

So go ahead and add the Husqvarna 13" Wooden Handle Hatchet to your gear - it's sure to become one of your favorite tools.

What You Should Know

Length -13 in

Weight - 2.24 lbs.

Blade Material - Swedish High Carbon Steel

The Husqvarna Hatchet is a great choice for those looking for a hatchet that can handle light to medium cutting tasks and specializes in splitting kindling. The 13-inch shaft provides enough leverage for a solid strike, making it ideal for splitting firewood, chopping small logs, or driving in tent pegs.

The grain orientation is good, and the light coat of oil on the handle helps to protect against moisture damage. You'll also not notice a varnish on its handle.

It's also worth noting that the head is securely fastened to the handle, so you don't have to worry about it coming loose with use. Also, the handle is not made from composite material, so if you manage to break it, you can easily replace it.

Overall, the Husqvarna 13′" Wooden Handle Hatchet is a great choice for those looking for a versatile and durable camping hatchet.

Husqvarna Hatchet Can Be You All Weather Companion
Husqvarna Hatchet is the best wooden camping axe

What Could Have Been Better

The Husqvarna 13" Wooden Handle Hatchet is a beautifully designed tool that is a bit on the heavy side for its small size. The design will take some time to get used to, but the outcome that you will have with this product is worth the effort.

Also, we would have loved a better finish on this product, especially around the edges and the joining of its head. However, the overall function and quality of the Husqvarna 13" Wooden Handle Hatchet are excellent.

Best Budget Buy

Fiskars X7 Hatchet

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Why You Will Love It

Weighing in at only 1.4 pounds, the Fiskars X7 Hatchet is perfect for backcountry campers who want a lightweight axe that can still take on big jobs. With a long shaft and a sharp blade, this axe is perfect for chopping or splitting wood or clearing brush.

Plus, the proprietary blade-grinding technique provides a sharper edge for better contact and cleaner cuts. And for some extra piece of mind, they offer a lifetime warranty on all of their axes.

What You Should Know

Length - 14 in

Weight - 1.4 lbs.

Blade Material - Double-Hardened Steel

The Fiskars X7 hatchet is a versatile and durable tool that is perfect for a variety of tasks. The low-friction coating helps to keep the axe from getting stuck. The handle is made from Graphite reinforced polyimide composite material that imparts unmatched strength and temperature and corrosion resistance.

However, the problem with composite handles is that you won't be able to replace them easily if you somehow manage to break them! Fortunately, the FiberComp handle of this axe is virtually unbreakable.

The hollow handle is also a nice feature and can be used as an extra storage space, especially for survivalists, as it allows you to keep quite a few things inside it. Additionally, the lanyard holes on each side of the handle make it easy to attach the hatchet to your belt or backpack for easy transport.

Whether you're camping, hiking, or simply doing some yard work, the Fiskars X7 hatchet is a great choice.

What Could Have Been Better

The Fiskars X7 Hatchet is a great tool for chopping, but it falls short when it comes to precision work. The plastic sheath is functional but not very durable, and the handle cannot be replaced.

In addition, the hatchet requires regular maintenance and can be problematic in very cold weather. However, despite these drawbacks, the Fiskars X7 Hatchet is a reliable tool and at this price point, it is the best you will get for all your camping requirements.

Check out our article on the Best Winter Tents with Stove Jacks

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Worthy Contenders

Schrade Titanium Coated Axe
Schrade Titanium Coated Axe

Schrade Titanium Coated Axe

The Schrade Titanium Coated Axe is a great value-for-money choice for anyone looking for a reliable and well-made survival axe. We were impressed with the quality and attention to detail that Schrade had put into the design and engineering of this axe.

The size, weight, and balance of the SCAXE2L provide an ample amount of force and control when notching and shaping logs. Additionally, the titanium coating on the axe head provides superior durability and corrosion resistance. The TPR surface of the handle provides a comfortable, non-slip grip, even in wet conditions.

Additionally, the soft TPR material absorbs some of the vibration coming from the axe head as it strikes hard surfaces, thus reducing fatigue on your arms.

However, it feels a bit heavy to be used comfortably with one hand and for two-handed operation, it is a bit small in length. And although the titanium coating does provide some protection against rust, the axe is still susceptible to corrosion if it is not properly cared for.

Overall, if you are looking for a survival axe and you are someone who loves to take care of your gears, you can go ahead with Schrade Titanium Coated Axe and won't be disappointed.

Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet

Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet is the best premium camping axe
Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet

The Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet is a versatile, lightweight axe weighing only 1.3 lbs. making it perfect for backpackers or campers who need a reliable tool for performing any light chores. The included leather sheath makes it easy to carry and transport and the superior built quality is guaranteed to provide years of use.

The Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet features a Swedish Steel blade and American Hickory handle, which feels great, and seems to be the perfect size for its application. The handle is coated in linseed oil and beeswax giving that great finish and is very nice for grip & also protects from rot.

Another great sign of this axe is the balance and alignment of the handle with the eye of the head. You will notice the blade is a bit more convex than a standard felling axe. This means it is more of a slicing tool rather than a splitting axe.

The sharpness and shape of the blade allow you to use it even as a camping knife in many situations. Creating shavings is also something that this axe is great at. Due to the convex shape of the blades, you can shave up kindling over and over and it’ll easily slice through every time.

To be honest, this is actually one of the most complete axes we have seen and also a beautifully crafted one. However, we had to place this here because of its steep price, which is almost equal to the total price of our top four choices!

But if you are willing to pay the premium price, you will get something beautiful that will last for generations. If you really love the feel of it or don't mind the price, you can also opt for their Gransfors Bruks Small Forest Axe (check price) which is more suited for car camping trips.

Also, check out our article on the best spotting scopes.

Whenever you are splitting logs with a camping axe, it is important to be aware of the dangers, and never break the vertical plane rule. This means you should never allow the axe to swing beyond its vertical plane without hitting something else first. Doing so could result in the axe striking your leg, which could be very dangerous. The safest way to split logs is from ground level. Simply place the log on the ground in front of you and kneel down. This will allow you to section it off without any risk of the axe swinging beyond its vertical plane. If you need to split logs from high up on a stump, be extra careful to follow the vertical plane rule. Otherwise, you could be putting yourself in serious danger.
Also, check out our article on the Best Ice Fishing Gloves

Frequently Asked Questions

People want to know about camping axes but don't know where to start.

There are so many questions people have about camping axes that it can be hard to know where to start. Do you need special kinds of axes for camping? What are the different types of camping axes? How are they different from hatchets? How do you use them? How do you choose them?

We've got the answers to all your questions right here. We'll discuss the different types of camping axes, how to choose the right one for you, and how to use them safely and effectively.

Do I need a camping axe?

This is a great tool to have if you plan on doing any serious camping or hiking. It can be used for a variety of tasks, whether you want to chop wood for a campfire, split wood, trim branches to clear the area for your campsite or create a makeshift shelter.

It can even be used for self-defense in case of an attack by an animal. While not absolutely necessary, having an axe with you can definitely make your camping experience safer and more enjoyable.

How is a camping axe different from a camping hatchet?

There are a few key differences between axes and hatchets. One of the main differences is that camping axes are usually longer and have a more pronounced curve to the blade, while hatchets tend to be shorter with a straighter blade. Axes also typically have a deeper scoreline (the groove running down the center of the blade) which makes them better for chopping larger pieces of wood.

Also, axes are designed for mostly two-handed use and their handles are more than a foot long, while hatchets are designed for single-handed use and mostly have shorter handles. And finally, most camping axes have a head made from forge-welded tool steel, which is much more durable than the cast metal heads found on most hatchets.

The ideal length of a camp axe should be between 12" and 24", above this, it loses its portability. In our article, we have considered axes with lengths more than 12" and all of them are less than 20 inches in length.

Is a camping hatchet or axe better for camping?

It really depends on what you need the hatchet or axe for. If you're chopping kindling or large amounts of wood for your campsite or in general looking for a more versatile tool to take on your next camping trip, you'll probably want an axe.

If you're just looking for a general tool to help around the campsite or something to help you in some precision tasks a hatchet may be a better option. Really, it comes down to personal preference and what tasks you'll be using it for while camping.

How is a camp axe different from a tomahawk?

Tomahawks are designed primarily for combat or close-quarters self-defense, whereas camping axes are designed for a variety of uses, including chopping wood and striking a spark to start a fire. Tomahawks also tend to be smaller and lighter than axes.

What type of axe is best for camping?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best type of axe for camping depends on a number of factors, including the type of camping you’re doing (e.g. car camping, backpacking, etc.), what you’ll be using it for (e.g. chopping firewood, clearing trails, etc.), and your personal preferences. However, in general, certain types of axes are better suited for camping than others.

For example, felling axes are typically heavier and have longer handles than carving or Celtic axes, making them better suited for chopping down trees or large branches. If you’re planning on doing a lot of woodcutting while camping, a felling axe would be a good option.

On the other hand, if you’re mostly looking for an axe to help around the campsite (e.g. chopping or splitting wood of small sizes, driving tent pegs into the ground, etc.), a carving or Celtic axe would be a better choice. These types of axes are smaller and lighter than felling axes, making them more portable and easier to use for tasks that don’t require a lot of power.

What is the best way of splitting wood using a camping hatchet or axe?

And while there are many ways to split wood, not all of them are going to be safe. It can also be really unsafe even with the best camping hatchets or axes if not done correctly. 

You can do it by placing the piece of wood you intend to split between two larger pieces of firewood and pressing them together, the logs on the ground will hold the target log upright. This way, when you go to split it, the heel of your hatchet will catch in the front log rather than hitting the ground. 

If you are splitting kindling, repeat this process several times, not only will this save your axe from harm, but it will also make the process more efficient as the wood becomes smaller. So next time you are splitting wood, remember this technique and stay safe.

How do I choose the best camping axe for me?

When it comes to camping axes, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind. 

First, consider what you'll be using it for. If you're mostly going to be chopping a large amount of wood, then you'll want an axe with a heavier head and longer handle. 

Second, think about the size and weight of the axe. You don't want something that's too big or too heavy to carry around with you on your camping trip. 

And finally, consider your budget. There is a wide range of prices for camping axes, so it's important to find one that fits your needs and budget.

Hopefully, this article has helped you narrow down the best camp axe for your next outdoor adventure!

What is the best backpacking axe?

There is no definitive answer to this question since different people have different preferences and needs. However, a few factors to consider when choosing a backpacking axe are weight, size, and type of blade.

Some of the lightest axes on the market are those made with carbon fiber handles, while heavier options include those with stainless steel or titanium handles. Size also varies, with most models ranging from 12-24 inches long. And finally, different blades can offer different functionality - for example, a felling axe has a sharper blade that is better suited for felling trees, while a carver axe has a curved blade that is ideal for shaping wood.

Ultimately, the best backpacking axe is the one that fits your individual needs and preferences. You can go with any of our top picks for not your backpacking trips as well. You can go with the Fiskars X7 Hatchet if you have a strict budget or if budget is not a matter for you, and you just want the best wood-chopping experience in your axe that will not weigh you down, you can opt for the Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet.  Or if you want the best lightweight solution opt for the Gerber Pack Hatchet which is actually a smaller version of our top pick, built for your backpacking needs( You can check it here)

How heavy an axe do I need for camping?

Typically, a camp axe should weigh between 1 and 2 pounds. If you're looking for an all-purpose tool, go for something in the middle of that range. But if you have specific needs – like splitting firewood – you may want to adjust your weight accordingly.

For example, a heavier axe can be better for chopping wood, while a lighter one might be better for easy transport and quick use. Whatever weight you choose, make sure you're comfortable swinging it – or else you'll be in for a long, tedious trip.

How long an axe do I need for camping?

Camping axes come in a range of sizes but typically fall into one of two categories: full-sized camp axes or hatchet-sized camp axes. A full-sized camp axe is great for larger jobs, like chopping down trees or splitting logs. A hatchet-sized camp axe is perfect for more small tasks, like chopping kindling, or shaving off the bark.

The length of the axe depends on the size and weight of the axe head. Heavier heads require longer handles to provide enough leverage for efficient chopping. But typically for general camping purposes, a handle length of 12 to 26 inches will be sufficient for your use.

How long will a camping axe last?

Different axes are made from different materials, so it really depends on the axe. An axe made from stainless steel will last longer than one made from carbon steel. If it is well-maintained, it will also last longer than one that is not cared for. Also, if used for light work, it will last longer than one used for heavy work. But, in general, with proper care, an axe can easily last for decades.

Should a camping axe be razor-sharp?

It depends. If you plan on using the camp axe for precision tasks such as cutting small branches or whittling wood, then you'll want a razor-sharp edge. However, if you plan on using the camping axe for bigger tasks such as splitting logs, then you'll want a more durable edge that can withstand a bit of wear and tear.

No matter what kind of edge you choose, it's important to keep your axe sharpened regularly so that it can perform at its best. A dull blade not only makes the task more difficult but also increases the chances of the blade slipping and causing an injury.

Can I use a knife sharpener to sharpen a camp axe?

Yes, you can use a knife sharpener to sharpen a camp axe. However, you should take into account the difference in the blades when sharpening them. Most knife sharpeners are designed for use with thin blades that are curved inward, while an axe has a much thicker blade that is curved outward. You can refer to our article on Knife Sharpeners for more information on them.

You will need to use less pressure when sharpening an axe with a knife sharpener because you are essentially trying to sharpen the edge of the blade rather than shaving off metal. You can use whetstones and other sharpening stones for your camping axe however, a better option would be to use something like a grinding wheel or belt sander.

Check out the video below to know some tips and tricks to use your axe safely:

So, What Is The Best Camping Axe For You

A camping axe is an essential piece of gear for any backcountry adventurer and it can even make you feel like a badass. Whether you’re a lumberjack looking for the perfect tool to take care of business in the wilderness or just want something to help you fell trees and build a shelter on your next family camping trip, we hope this article helped you find the best camping axe for your needs.  For your reference, they are :

Best Overall Pick - Gerber 17.5-Inch Freescape

Best Single Piece Axe - Estwing Sportsman’s Axe

Best Wooden Axe - Husqvarna 13′ Wooden Handle Hatchet

Best Budget Option - Fiskars X7 Hatchet

Best Premium Pick - Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet

Best of the Rest - Schrade Titanium Coated Axe

Just don't forget to click the “Check Price on Amazon” buttons above to purchase the one you loved the most.

We hope that this has helped to simplify your decision-making process and that you are now one step closer to finding the perfect axe for your camping needs.

Thanks for reading and we hope that you have a great time out in the wilderness with your new axe!

 Best Camping Axe
If you are an outdoorsman, you need to have a proper camping ax. 

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