Best Bushcraft Axes

Bushcrafting and spending time in the wilderness is an increasingly common pastime and provides the cornerstone for humanity’s development. Spending a couple of days (or weeks) in the woods can help you decompress and learn much about yourself and self-reliance. You build a greater appreciation for the land and natural resources in general.

Whether you’re new to bushcrafting or a veteran at it, all outdoorsmen need similar bushcraft tools. One of the most crucial tools for bushcraft is the axe. You’ll use it for many things, including preparing kindling and firewood, hunting, felling trees, clearing your land, building structures, and other emergency uses. Axes are invaluable if you’ve decided to start bushcrafting, so we’ll look at some of the best bushcraft axes. In this buyer’s guide, we’ve rated these axes for size, usability, sharpness, and quality of materials and taken a look at customer reviews to provide a more in-depth look at what they have to offer.

Currently, our ratings for the best bushcraft axes are as follows:

  1. Fiskars X7 hatchet
  2. Schrade SCAXE 10 Full Tang hatchet
  3. Mossy Oak camping set
  4. WEYLAND survival hatchet
  5. SOG Camp axe
  6. Husqvarna Utility axe

#1 Fiskars X7 Hatchet

Fiskars 378501-1002 X7 Hatchet

Best Overall

At less than $30, I didn’t have the highest expectations, but I was pleasantly surprised to find a quality axe. The X7 arrived with a sharp blade, though I did spend more time sharpening it to be sure of a perfect cutting edge. I prefer my edges to be razor-sharp.

The carbon steel head contains most of the weight, and it is well centered and easy to swing. It has a low friction coating preventing the axe from chipping or getting stuck when chopping wood. I successfully used it to fell a couple of fallen small trees and process tinder.

It’s strong and feels like it can take a beating; not only that, but it’s an excellent bushcraft/camping axe since it weighs a little over a pound and will fit well into your backpack or attach to your belt for easy access. It has an excellent fiber comp handle that is strong despite being hollow. If you’re a traditionalist scared to move away from the wooden handle, this may convince you. However, I have heard troubling tales about occasional poor quality control. It shouldn’t be a huge issue as Fiskars are a big brand name offering a lifetime warranty, but you should still be aware of this.

‘‘Believe the hype. This hatchet is the real deal—worth every penny and probably more.” – Justin H.

Check out our full review of the Fiskars X7 Hatchet

Pros

  • Lightweight with good weight distribution
  • Very sharp
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Easy to clip to your belt or pack
  • Budget-friendly

Cons

  • Rare quality control issues

#2 Schrade SCAXE10 Full Tang Hatchet

Schrade SCAXE10 11.1in Full Tang Hatchet with 3.6in Stainless Steel Blade and TPR Handle for Outdoor Survival Camping and Everyday Tasks , Black

Best Full Tang Hatchet

The Schrade hatchet is a great little tool with an ergonomic axe handle providing excellent grip. However, it is quite thin, so it is perhaps not the best for extended use. The powder-coated blade prevents it from getting stuck in logs. It has a sharp edge before you sharpen it, and it’s easy to use. It holds its edge well, and the high-quality steel doesn’t chip or roll like other small axes. Full tang hatchets are ideal for balance and leverage.

The total length of the Schrade Scaxe10 is just 11 inches, and it weighs around a pound and a half, meaning you’ll barely notice it in your kit bag. Its small size makes it perfect as a camp axe or even a survival hatchet for your bug-out bag.

Overall, this is an excellent piece of kit for just $25. It has a thermoplastic belt sheath that you can attach to your backpack or use the lanyard cord that comes with it. With that said, it’s not designed for woodworking or splitting logs; anything that requires repetitive use will not get the best out of this axe.

‘‘It’s a nearly indestructible hatchet. Takes an edge, holds it pretty well, chops wood. Today, tomorrow, ten years from now.’’ Mark W.

Check out our full review of the Schrade SCAXE10 Full Tang Hatchet

Pros

  • Full tang
  • Affordable
  • Doesn’t require much sharpening
  • Powder-coated blade

Cons

  • Handle wrap is thin and not designed for repetitive use

#3 Mossy Oak Camping Set

Mossy Oak Axe and Fixed Blade Knife with Sheath, One-Piece Camping Hatchet and Hunting Knife with Rope Handle, Includes Zoomable Flashlight and Many Other Tools, 12 Pieces Camping Tool Set

Best Kit

This is the only kit on the list, representing excellent value for money. Contents include:

  • 10-inch machete with sheath
  • Tactical axe
  • Hunting knife
  • 250Lm flashlight
  • Carabiners
  • 50ft of Paracord
  • Firestarter
  • Stone sharpener

The kit performed well, with an axe-head that included a three hex-bore (ranging from 5/8 to 3/8 in size) allowing it to perform as a multi-tool. The rope grip is okay to use, with good grip, but it may be uncomfortable if you need to use consistent pressure. The extra tools such as the whetstone sharpener and fire starter are helpful camping essentials and the 50ft of Paracord.

The machete and hunting knife isn’t bad either. It’s exceptionally lightweight and high-quality, with the blade being made out of 3CR13 stainless steel, helping with strength and edge retention. I found them to have more uses than the axe, but I’m not sure how much use a machete is in a camping kit.

Unfortunately, despite the seemingly good value, I did find that the axe tried to do too much to be a multi-tool and forgot to be a decent axe. It’s only really suited for very lightweight use – ideal for a teenager’s first camping trip, not so much if you’re a seasoned camper. You couldn’t use it for felling trees, and it’s probably not the best bushcraft hatchet. You could use it to chop small pieces of wood for kindling, but some customers report needing to use a hammer alongside it, which somewhat defeats the purpose of bringing an axe in the first place.

‘‘I would not buy this again, but then it was really inexpensive; maybe suited for a young Boy Scout, but not grown man material.’’ – Amazon Business Customer.

Check out our full review of the Mossy Oak Camping Set

Pros

  • The extra tools are of great quality
  • Excellent quality for money
  • Hex-bore axe head
  • Very lightweight

Cons

  • Only suitable for light duty

#4 WEYLAND Survival Hatchet

WEYLAND Survival Hatchet & Camping Axe with MOLLE Sheath - Small Tactical Bushcraft Camping Axes & Hatchets for Splitting & Chopping Wood, Kindling Splitter for fire, Throwing Tomahawk, Camp Hand Tool

Best MOLLE-ready hatchet

DThis is a great little tactical hatchet, weighing in at just 27 ounces, you can take it on the go. The axe head measures around 5.5 inches and can be used for carving wood and bushcrafting. It’s designed to be clipped to your belt or pack easily so it’s very portable. MOLLE-compatible products can be hard to come by – used by armed forces worldwide, they’re the gold standard for tactical use. It’s a great addition to a bug-out bag and represents one of the best outdoor axes on this list.

If you’re a traditionalist looking for a wood handle, you should give this survival hatchet a go, it’s probably one of the sturdiest feeling axes on the market. It feels like it can take a beating.

It has a comfortable ergonomic grip, so you can be sure that it’s the right choice whether you’re after a felling axe or tomahawk, it’s a versatile tool. The customer service offered is also very personal, with the owner taking a direct interest in all clients and being easy to contact. Some customers report the grip coming loose, so you should keep in mind that quality control may not be the best.

“Sturdy tool or one heck of a weapon. This meets my standards. It appears to be decent steel. Blade is sharp and easy to maintain. I like the multi angles of the blade, allows to use the blade at different angles. The shieth is a bit tricky getting the hatchet out. I highly recommend this. If you found this item in REI you would expect to pay three times the amount.” Gary T.

Check out our full review of the WEYLAND Survival Hatchet

Pros

  • MOLLE-ready sheath
  • Full tang
  • Sturdy and easy to use
  • Ergonomic grip

Cons

  • Quality control needs work

#5 SOG camp axe

SOG Camp Axe- Compact Camping and Survival Hatchet/Hammer Tool with Sheath and 3.1 Inch Bushcraft Axe Edge (CH1001-CP)

Best Hatchet and Hammer

The SOG camp axe has a great glass-reinforced nylon sheath and handle, and the sheath comes with a rubber strap that wraps around the back of the axe head (preventing accidents). The handle is lightweight, but it’s pretty thin, so I assumed there’d be some discomfort; I was wrong, the Nylon absorbed most of the force. The handle material is durable enough to be used as a hammer tool and I used it to hammer in tent pegs without any problems.

It wasn’t made to be used as a Tomahawk, but you could give it a go since it is lightweight, durable, and well-balanced. It can also chop small to medium logs for kindling and makes an excellent addition to your camping trip. You’ll barely notice you’re carrying it since it has a small size (1lb weight and 3.1-inch blade). It is a little small for most campers, and some customers report that it requires retightening, which isn’t a great start.

SOG has been in the business since 1986, so I’ve never had an issue accessing quality customer service; they also offer a lifetime warranty of sorts, stating that ‘‘SOG for life: Take care of your camp axes and hatchets, and we’ll take care of you; we gladly consider repairs and replacements for your properly maintained SOG Camp Axe.’’

‘‘If you wanted weekend warrior something to play around with, this is great!

If you want to use this for actual expeditions in the real world and use it for days on end, you might want to rethink.’’ Justin M.

Check out our full review of the SOG camp axe

Pros

  • Compact hatchet and hammer combo
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • A little too small
  • The head possibly requires retightening

#6 Husqvarna 24 inch Utility axe

Husqvarna 24 in. Steel Utility Axe with Fiberglass Handle

Best Mid Sized Axe

Husqvarna is a Swedish manufacturer with a long history dating back to the 1600s, so you know their reputation will be a good one. One of their most popular products is the 24-inch handle multipurpose axe.

The excellent quality materials were the first apparent thing about this axe, and the composite handle helps you get a good swing going. The cutting edge is large enough for wood cutting and I could easily fell a medium sized tree with it. It’s a perfect weekend or emergency axe.

The head weight (2.2lb) makes it a perfect splitting axe; I rarely needed a second swing. The notable handle length is sufficient to allow you to get a powerful swing going. The combination of quality Swedish steel and a longer handle makes quick work of everything from small logs to trees. But it does include built-in overstrike protection to prevent you from damaging your axe. It’s also bright orange meaning it’d be difficult for a camper to use. It’s nowhere near as portable as other axes on this list. While it’s not a small hatchet it’s no less worthwhile. It’s made in Sweden and is one of our top picks for this reason. Scandinavian craftsmanship is regarded as excellent for a reason.

“Well built, weighted, and rugged enough to be used and abused all day long. Cut over a hundred trees since I got this axe, and it stays on my side ready for every wedge.” – Harls

Check out our full review of the Husqvarna 24 inch Utility Axe

Pros

  • Heavy duty
  • 2.2lb axe head
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Won’t easily lose it due to it’s bright color
  • Holds an edge for a long time

Cons

  • You’ll probably need to sharpen it after you get it

Recap: The Best Bushcraft Axes

Currently, our ratings for the best bushcraft axes are as follows:

  1. Fiskars X7 hatchet
  2. Schrade SCAXE 10 Full Tang hatchet
  3. Mossy Oak camping set
  4. WEYLAND survival hatchet
  5. SOG Camp axe
  6. Husqvarna Utility axe

To rank them, I took into account the type of axe, the quality of the materials, and the performance of each axe. Most axes are quite different – for example, the Husqvarna utility axe with its 2.2lb axe head and 24-inch long handle couldn’t be further from the 1lb axe included in the Mossy Oak Camping Set.

Overall, it would be best to consider exactly what functions you want your axe to serve before deciding which is best for you. If you’re looking for a good all-rounder, you can’t go wrong with the Fiskars X7 Hatchet, but if you want something more heavy-duty, you should consider the Husqvarna Utility axe. Good luck making your purchase!

Trey

About the Author

Trey is a lifelong hunter and avid camper. He lives outside Denver, CO with his wife Kaci and their lab mix Ziggy. They spend as much time as possible outdoors - hunting, fishing, and camping.

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