Backpacking is a journey that requires the right tools at the right time to avoid any hassle. The backpacking hatchet is a definite gear you would consider while backpacking. They are small, portable and versatile. A hatchet provides you with numerous options like chopping small trees with ease, splitting wood for kindle, can hammer on the pegs of your tent. A hatchet can also be used as a self-defensive weapon against wild beasts. Its uses are not limited to the woods.
This article features eight of the best backpacking hatchets found in the market today.
- LEXIVON V9 Camping Hatchet, 9-Inch Axe | Ergonomic Grip, Lightweight...
- Fiskars 375501-1001 Hatchet with Sheath, 14", Black
- Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet 13.50 Inch, Axe, 415
- Schrade SCAXE2G Survival Hatchet Green Phosphorescent Handle
- Hults Bruk Tarnaby Hatchet
- CAMAQUI Hatchet 15" Hand Forged High Carbon Steel with Handmade Wooden...
- No products found.
- Gerber 9-Inch Hatchet [31-002648],Black
But first, you need to know about some of the most essential features to look for in the best backpacking hatchet.
Buyer’s Guide for the Best Backpacking Hatchet
Types of Hatchet
Hatchets come in a variety of designs and types with different applications as per your need and requirement. Before buying your best backpacking hatchet, keep in mind which type suits you the most as per your requirement. Types of hatchet are listed below:
Camping hatchets are the mid-sized hatchets that comes with a long shaft, designed mainly for chopping and splitting wood. It is a two-handed use gear, and the butt is wide enough to hammer in tent pegs also, which is an additional feature. Camping hatchets are heavier than survival hatchets and may not get fit in small bags.
Survival Hatchet is a small hatchet that comes with a short shaft. It is designed for single-handed use. They are typically smaller than camping hatchets. Survival Hatchet comes with a blade that is usually big enough to perform decent chopping. In contrast, its shorter shaft is excellent for cutting thicker stuff. It is ideal for hammering, splitting wood, and cutting small logs.
Tactical hatchets are those which can be used as a self-defence weapon. Your tactical weapon may help you survive the attack of wild beasts, but you are more likely to be using it to chop fine wood and splitting it too.
As the name implies, throwing hatchets are designed for throwing and embeds itself on whatever object it is thrown at. They come with a small and dull blade. It is not ideal for chopping or splitting the wood but can be significantly used for hammering purposes. They are superbly balanced around the centre of a hatchet, which makes them great for throwing.
Size is one of the most essential factors to be considered while buying the best backpacking hatchet. For your ideal backpacking journey, you need a hatchet that perfectly gets fit into your bag. Two main components of hatchet are present, which contributes mainly to its size, the blade and handle size.
The blade should be big enough, which offers chopping with ease and splitting of wood with less application of effort. If you select a hatchet with a small blade, your application of effort may increase to split the wood, and the hatchet may not be useful in splitting large logs.
The handles of the hatchet come in a range of 8 inches to 36 inches in length. Longer handles offer better wood splitting, ease in handling when chopping logs, and are versatile. But their disadvantage is they are heavier than small handled hatchets. On the other side, small handled hatchets are lighter but required a lot of effort when chopping large logs. So choose the hatchet with balance while considering the factors mentioned above.
Different backpacking hatchets come with various handle materials. Generally, the handle is made from fibreglass or wood. Some of the models come with a metal handle, but they are quite heavy and not suitable for repetitive use. Fibreglass handles come with a variety of features like durability, light in weight, and doesn’t splinter easily. The downside is that once it is damaged, you have to replace it as it cannot be repaired.
Wooden handles may be light or heavier depend upon the wood. They can be repaired and replaced easily. The downside is they are susceptible to overstrike damage, splintering, can be slippery depending upon the surface of the wood to which extent its finishing is done. You need to choose the handle which suits you the most.
Different backpacking hatchets come with different blade materials. You should choose your backpacking hatchet blade as per your needs and requirements. Different types of steel are used to construct the blades of the hatchet. Properties of the steel can determine which hatchet can be used for what purpose. Tough, harder, easier to sharpen steels are available, depend upon how you want it. Types of steel with description is listed below:
Carbon steel consists of only carbon and iron. It is the hardest steel version, which comes in low, medium and high-carbon steel. To minimize the risk of breakage, it is heat-tempered. For the construction of hatchet blades, medium and high-carbon grades are used, and these are usually 1065-1095 graded.
It is constructed by combining carbon steel with one or more alloying elements such as manganese, silicon, nickel, titanium, copper, chromium, and aluminium, having medium-level carbon and a significant amount of chromium, but not as much as in stainless steel. Alloy steel offers a variety of features, including toughness, hardness, shock resistance, and impact enduring.
Stainless steel is relatively soft with moderate edge retention compared to the other types of steel. It is usually combined with metals like nickel to improve its hardness. The most common grade for hatchets blade used is 420 Stainless Steel. Advantages are corrosion-resistant and stand up well to the elements.
This is one of the crucial factors to be taken into account before buying your best backpacking hatchet. The blade of the hatchet must be sharper. The sharper the edge, the easier it will be to make its way through the wood. The blade should be made of high-quality steel that should remain sharper in the future too and can be sharpened again if required in the future easily.
When going for backpacking, you want yourself to be lighter as much as possible. The weight of the hatchet depends upon its two components, the blade and the handle. Both should be of good quality and light in weight, to provide you comfort in your journey. But just going for lightweight is not the right option. Because of this, maybe you have to compromise a good quality handle or blade. So be wise while choosing the excellent quality hatchet.
Review of the Best Backpacking Hatchet
- INNOVATIVE DESIGN - Fully encased over-molded blade. Hi-Tech fiberglass...
- DURABLE - Drop-forged & heat-treated Grade A High-Carbon steel,...
Lexivon V9 hatchet is one of the best backpacking hatchet available on the market. It is constructed of high-quality materials. The handle of the hatchet is made of lightweight fibreglass composite material, which is easy to carry and durable. The ergonomic grip prevents slippage even in the wettest conditions.
Lexivon V9 hatchet offers great value for money. It is affordable in a budget-friendly range. This hatchet comes with a carrying case that locks around the head of the hatchet, which keeps the blade safely tucked away and reduces the risk of accidents. The protective case comes with a comfortable carrying handle at the top.
- Affordable price range
- Ergonomic and safe design
- Super small in size
- Light in weight
- Ergonomic grip protects against slippage
- The super-thin handle might be uncomfortable for larger hands users.
- 9” may be small for thicker chunks of wood
- Ideal for chopping kindling and small- to medium-sized logs
- Proprietary blade-grinding technique provides a sharper edge for better...
Fiskars 14 inch hatchet is a perfect choice for backpackers and outdoor enthusiasts. It is light in weight and easily carried gear. It comes with a low-friction blade that has enough power to cut through the wood and prevents the head from getting stuck. The moulded head will not loosen and also prevents overstrike breakage.
Fiskars 14 inch hatchet offers a blade-grinding technique that helps you make cleaner cuts. This hatchet is great for chopping kindling and can be used for a lot of projects, small to medium projects. It offers numerous features which makes it a perfect choice includes perfect weight distribution, advanced blade geometry, an ultra-sharp edge and virtually unbreakable design to maximize your performance. This combination of features gives the strength to the blade to bite deeper when chopping. With more blade penetration on each swing, you can chop more wood with less effort and hand strain application.
- Ultra-sharp edge
- Light in weight
- Easy to carry
- Advanced blade geometry
- Perfect weight distribution
- Virtually unbreakable design
- Comes with a sheath
- Not for tough works
- Length with handle: 13.50 inch, Item-ID: 415
- Weight: 1.3 lbs
Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet is a perfect gear for backpacking lovers. It is light in weight weighing 1.3 pounds, which makes it easy for you to carry it on any of your adventurous journeys. The weight of its head is 1 pound alone and perfectly balances the handle.
Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet comes with a long, sharp blade which can be easily sharpened and is made from Swedish steel. It also has the capability of lopping off large branches of trees and splitting small logs for the campfire. The head of the hatchet offers toughness and hardness, which makes it durable.
Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet is a traditional scouting and camping axe. It offers a longer handle which makes it suitable for splitting woods. It also includes a free vegetable-tanned leather blade sheath and an axe book with every purchase made in Sweden.
- Solid steel construction
- Includes leather sheath
- Free axe book 20-year warranty
- A bit pricey
- Titanium Coated 3Cr13 Stainless Steel Head with Hammer Pommel
- Black Glass Fiber Filled PA Handle with Ergonomic Green Phosphorescent TPR...
Schrade SCAXE2G Survival Hatchet is also an ideal choice for backpackers. It offers an ergonomic handle which provides a firm grip to its users. This feature of this hatchet prevents the likelihood of a hand slippage during its usage. It weighs only 1.37 pounds.
Schrade SCAXE2G Survival Hatchet comes with a high-quality stainless steel head which is finished smoothly and provides to the facility of sharpening it in future easily. The blade comes perfectly sharp and does not require additional sharpening until it starts to get dull in future. The head of this hatchet is coated in titanium for extra durability and corrosion resistance.
Schrade hatchet handle is constructed from fibreglass and rubber, which provides a firm and smooth feel to the touch. It is curved with circular embedding which provides a perfect grip and a knob at the end to keep your hand prevent from slippage.
The combination of rubber and fibreglass is offered to resist all forms of vibrations. The handle and blade are set perfectly with proper balance. The outermost half of the handle provides a light green glow in the dark, which enables you to know where your hatchet is placed exactly.
- Light in weight
- Smooth fibreglass handle
- Comes with a thermoplastic belt sheath
- Glowing handle
- Aesthetically designed
- Stainless steel blade may not be much strong.
- This axe head is hand-forged and made from Swedish axe steel in a foundry...
- As part of the production process, the steel is struck multiple times...
Hults Bruk Tarnaby Hatchet is a lightweight hatchet which is an ideal companion for your next backpacking. The axe head is hand-forged and constructed from Swedish axe steel. The steel is struck several times to increase its density, which results in more durability of the axe.
Hults Bruk Tarnaby Hatchet comes with the head which is constructed in such a way that there is a tempered zone designed to hold a very sharp edge even after many sharpening. The hatchet is perfectly balanced between the handle and the head, which helps you to lift it easily and with more comfort.
The handle length of this hatchet is 15 inches long, which makes it ideal for most of the light wood chopping. The handle is hand-shaped from American hickory, which is smoothly finished and given treatment for quality preservation and protection.
Hults Bruk Tarnaby Hatchet comes with a traditional leather protective sheath that is furnished with some unique Swedish decorative elements. The axe comes with a detailed user manual. You also get a 20-year warranty period on workmanship and manufacturing defects which is a plus point for sure.
- Light in weight
- Hand-forged Tempered zone
- Comes with a leather sheath
- 20-year warranty
- A bit heavier
- ALL HAND MADE HATCHET – every piece, hand forged high carbon steel and...
- PERFECT POWER TO WEIGHT RATIO – it ideally increases swing power for wood...
CAMAQUI Hatchet is one of the best backpacking hatchets on our list. This hatchet comes in two different styles. One is the northern style, and the other is the eastern style. Eastern style comes with a smaller head and a slimmer handle as compare to northern style. Eastern style provides you with more portable feeling as it is light in weight, whereas northern style provides you with a more powerful swing. Brief properties of both styles are listed below:
- Overall Length: 15 inch
- Blade Length: 2.9 inch
- Handle Length: 13.5 inch
- Overall weight: 1.88 lb
- Material: High Carbon Steel and Rose Wood
- Overall Length: 15 inch
- Blade Length: 3.4 inch
- Handle Length: 12.9 inch
- Overall weight: 2.10 lb
- Material: High Carbon Steel and Hickory Wood
The CAMAQUI Hatchet is hand-forged, having its own unique look. The ergonomic handle comes with a slight curving for perfect grip. The handmade handle is impressive and consists of durable rosewood. Its ergonomic design provides you with a comfortable feeling and offers complete control from your backswing to follow through. Perfect weight distribution is provided between the blade and handles.
The CAMAQUI Hatchet comes with a free, heavy-duty cow leather sheath. The manufacturer does not offer a warranty, but it gives a 100% money-back guarantee. If you are not satisfied with any aspect of the hatchet, contact them, and they will refund your money.
- A hand-forged and unique look
- Heavy-duty cow leather sheath
- Ergonomic design
- Money-back guarantee
- Perfect weight distribution
- Two styles are available.
- Price is higher as compared to other comparable hatchets.
No products found.
Schrade SCAXE5 Tactical Hatchet is one of the best gear for your backpacking journey. It is a multifunctional hatchet, which will serve you well in most of the emergency situations when you need it the most. It comes with a sharp blade which does not require additional sharpening after you but it.
Schrade SCAXE5 Tactical Hatchet is secured onto the using a hand and finger-shaped grip that prevents it from slippage and becoming loose. The head of the hatchet is constructed from high carbon steel and is joined to the handle. The handle is made from durable nylon fibre and provides you with years of satisfactory service.
Schrade SCAXE5 Tactical Hatchet offers a slightly curved handle design ensures a power swing which is useful when chopping harder woods. The blade is made of reliable SK-5 High Carbon Steel with a black, nylon fibre handle. It also comes with the convenient black nylon belt sheath which provides quick and easy access, and the manufacturer also provides a lifetime warranty.
- Constructed from durable SK-5 high carbon steel
- Uses a firm hand and finger-shaped grip
- Comes with a pry bar
- Comes with a black nylon sheath
- Lifetime warranty
- The blade is smaller as compared to competing models of similar size and price range.
- Not suitable for heavy-duty tasks
- PTFE coated blade reduces friction, chops clean.
- Forged steel head construction is durable for long term use.
Gerber 9-Inch Hatchet is light in weight, compact hatchet. The head of this hatchet is constructed from forged steel and features a sharp 2.7 inches of the blade that lodges deep inside the wood for quicker chopping task. It weighs only 1.1 pounds. PTFE coating provided on the blade enhances weather and corrosion resistance. It also minimizes friction which keeps the edge sharp.
Gerber 9-Inch Hatchet comes with a glass-filled nylon handle which provides durability and high shock-absorbency ensuring to provide you with great comfort. The shock-absorbing handle provides safeguard against overstrike injury in case of an overstrike. A handle over-mould at the end offers you a comfortable and soft grip which prevent your hands from slippage.
- Extremely light in weight
- Shock-absorbing handle
- Compact design
- PTFE coating enhances weather and corrosion resistance
- Comes with a sharp blade
- Constructed from forged steel
- Limited lifetime warranty
- Cheap quality sheath
- Small blade and handle make it challenging to split large woods.
These are the eight best backpacking hatchets available on the market, according to my research. You can choose any one amongst them to take it with you on your next backpacking.
But if you ask my favourite, then it would definitely be the CAMAQUI Hatchet. It comes with numerous features such as its ergonomic design, durability, hand-forged and unique look, comes with heavy-duty cow leather sheath, perfect weight distribution, comes with two styles, and money-back guarantee. All these options make it an ideal choice for your next journey.