CAMPING & HIKING

The Best Bushcraft Tools: Your Way to Survive in The Wilderness

Jerry Mueller
Written by Jerry Mueller

Are you the type of a person who can never have enough time out in the wilderness? Whether it’s hiking in the state park, rock climbing in the mountains, or biking down the trails, you just want to be outside, right? But, you will agree that preparing for things that could happen while you are out there, is very important.

You need to make sure you’re prepared for the possible dangers or for unexpected situations, and you may not always have those tools available. Wouldn’t you love to be able to enjoy yourself without worrying about anything? That’s why considering the best bushcraft tools is important before you head out.

With these tools, you won’t have to worry at all. You can have a great time and have fun while knowing that if something comes up, you are fully prepared for it. But then again… how are you supposed to get prepared and know what you need when there are so many different tools out there? How could you ever choose between them all?

The Best Bushcraft Tools: Your Way to Survive in The Wilderness

That’s where we come in. We’ve already done the research for you and we know not only the important features that you should check out before you start buying your tools, but also which tools are going to fit those qualifications and get you off to a great start. We’ve got reviews, related items you’ll need and all the research, so you can just take a look and be on your way to a great time. So, let’s take a look!

Our Top Picks

ProductTypeWeightDimensionsPrice
Benchmade Bushcrafter 162Knife12.8 ounces11 x 3 x 2 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Ka-Bar Becker BK2Knife24 ounces18 x 5 x 5 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Ueasy Professional CompassCompass2.4 ounces1.9 x 3.3 x 4.6 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Wetterlings Splitting HatchetHatchet44.8 ounces20 x 7 x 1 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Bahco Laplander Saw4 ounces11 x 4 x 2 inchesCheck price on Amazon
MSR MiniWorks EXMicrofilter28.8 ounces7 x 10 x 4 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Sawyer MiniWater filtration system5.6 ounces8 x 3.5 x 3 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Solo Stove LiteStove8.96 ounces4.25 x 3.8 x 3.8 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Wilderness Solutions Amber FireLightFire Piston2.4 ounces3.4 x 0.75 inchesCheck price on Amazon
Zebra LoopPot16 ounces4.70, 5.51 and 6.29 inchesCheck price on Amazon

Things to Consider Before Buying

When you’re looking for your toolset you want to make sure you take a look at each of these features to make sure that what you’re getting is really what you’re looking for. You don’t want to spend a lot of money on something that isn’t really high-quality. So make sure these features are present.

Materials

The first thing you want to look at are the materials that your tools are made of. You want something that’s going to be durable and sturdy, no matter what you throw at it. In a perfect world, all of your tools will be made with high-quality metal for the surface, as well as all the way through the handle.

How to Choose Axe

A good metal will help increase longevity, but you’ll have to take care of it to make sure that you don’t end up with rust or chipping. This still lasts better than wood in any of your tools and is stronger than things like aluminum or stainless steel.

Size

You want tools that are comfortable in your hands. If you feel like they’re too big or too small you’re not going to be comfortable using them when it comes down to it. That can mean the difference between success and failure, so make sure you’re not getting something too small to actually get any power behind.

Camp Stove Recipes

If it’s too large for you to hold or carry, you could easily find yourself struggling to get it where you need to go and you’ll find it difficult to use for an extended period of time if you need to. Getting something moderate, which combines functionality with overall weight is going to be crucial.

Variety

You always need a variety of different tools with you. Don’t just think you’re fine with a single hatchet or a hammer. You want tools that are going to serve several purposes but you’re also going to want at least a few different tools. Something that is only going to serve one purpose is taking up space that you should be using for something else.

Victorinox Swiss Army Knife

A small selection of tools is going to be your best bet because it takes up a minimal amount of space but still provides you with all the best features. You don’t want to have to carry too many different tools, however, so make sure you look for the qualities of each one to decide what’s going to help you the most.

Difficult to Improvise

The more difficult the tool is to improvise the more you’re going to want to make sure you have one as well. Improvising a knife may be okay, but it’s not going to be as good of quality as having a knife with you in the first place that’s already sharpened and ready to go. On the other hand, you may be able to find a rock to use as a hammer.

Ax Blade

Find the tools that are going to be the most important, but still hardest to build for yourself if you find yourself in the midst of the wilderness or a dangerous situation. You want to always be prepared, after all, but you can’t carry absolutely every tool you might need for that situation. If you can build it when you get there, then go for it.

Price

Find high-quality tools that are going to provide the absolute best for you and your situation. You don’t want to spend a fortune on something that isn’t worth it, but you also don’t want to buy something that’s too cheap and isn’t going to get you what you need in the moment.

Knife in the Wood

A trusted brand is going to be a good investment as is looking at materials as we mentioned earlier. The more you know about the product itself the better off you’re going to be and the better prepared you will be for whatever is going to happen next.

Best Products on Today’s Market

Each of these products is going to be a great addition to your pack the next time you head out into the wilderness. You want to make sure that you have something to help you with anything that might come up with you’re out there, so make sure that you look into your options and choose your favorites.

Benchmade Bushcrafter 162 Knife

Price: Approx. $180Benchmade Bushcrafter 162 Knife

Weight: 12.8 ounces

Dimensions: 11 x 3 x 2 inches

Specific features: Brushed buckskin leather skin with flint rod loop, retention strap and D-ring, polished finished drop-point blade, 58-60HRC S30V fixed stainless steel 4.43 in a blade, green-colored G10 contoured and hand-blended handled equipped with red vulcanized spacer intact through pressed titanium tubing, manufactured in the U.S.

Best use: Bushcraft, backpacking/camping, outdoor activities like hunting

The Benchmade Bushcrafter 162 Knife has definitely proven its mettle time and time again with a drop-point blade and a super lightweight that you can definitely count on. It’s made of stainless steel and a contoured G10 handle for added durability.

Corrosion resistant and complete with a superb edge on either color option, it’s easy to hold and attaches easily wherever you want to carry it. The full-tang means that you have something you can count on to hold up under stress and the strength of its edge increases over a scandi grind since it is specifically designed to be thin prior to its sharpening process.

Extremely sharp right out of the box, this knife comes in two different color options and includes a sheath to protect the edge and you. You’ll definitely have what you need to cut through just about anything. This is a small and easy to carry knife that still fulfills a lot of functions for everyday carry or survival.

PROS:

  • Full tang knife
  • Made in the USA
  • Extremely solid and durable
  • Ergonomic style handle
  • Completes most outdoor tasks
 CONS:

  • Sheath is not ideal
  • Handle can be a hot spot
  • Handle not ideal

\Related: If you’re heading out into the wilderness you need a good way to carry your blade and the Benchmade Bushcrafter Sheath is a great way to do it. This sheath looks great and it keeps you knife protected at the same time, plus provides a space for you to take a Ferro rod.

Check the price on Amazon

Ka-Bar Becker BK2 Knife

Price: Approx. $85Ka-Bar Becker BK2 Campanion Fixed Blade Knife

Weight: 24 ounces

Dimensions: 18 x 5 x 5 inches

Specific features: A heavy duty knife with full tang suitable for camping, hard shell nylon sheath (black), designed by Ethan Becker, developed by KA-BAR Knives Inc., manufactured in Olean New York, U.S.

Best use: Bushcraft, camping/backpacking, outdoor chores

The Ka-Bar Becker BK2 Knife has been recognized for its no-nonsense design and sturdy nature. It has a very strong steel drop point blade coated with a black epoxy powder that provides some rolling resistance when you make deep cuts.

The lanyard hole and full tang design of its handle offers maximum strength. It is functional in accomplishing tasks like splitting or batoning wood, preparing a stack of wood for bonfires, and carving. A decent chop would be made easy considering its small footprint and size.

Camping chores like prepping food, building fires and odd jobs that require handy sharp object can be carried out using this natural tool choice. The BK2 could be a good option when you are looking for a do-it-all knife.

The quality of the materials used in making this knife is high, alongside its high level fit and finish, and its selling price. This is likely the best tool as a compact survival knife or a camp knife.

PROS:

  • Thick blade
  • Fixed blade
  • Full tang
  • Made in USA
  • Comfortable handle
 CONS:

  • Not the best choice for any task
  • Not ideal for fine carving
  • Sheath is not ideal

Related: The Blade Tech Tek-Lok is designed to provide you with a sturdy and stable place to store your knife and to keep it safe. It’s inexpensive and it’s able to fit right to your side for added comfort as well.

Check the price on Amazon

Ueasy Professional Compass

Price: Approx. $15Ueasy Professional Compass

Weight: 2.4 ounces

Dimensions: 1.9 x 3.3 x 4.6 inches

Specific features: Made from glass and metal, resistant to water and shakes, comes with clear night viewing and luminous display inside, has sighting window that contains a sighting line, reference table for distance estimation and scope

Best use: Camping/backpacking, trekking

The Ueasy Professional Compass has little difference in style when compared to the traditional military compass, but it’s inexpensive, which makes it great for most people who want great tools without spending a fortune.

There are three different options for color so that you can get exactly what you’re looking for. Not only that, but you get a luminous display that makes it a whole lot easier to see where you are and where you’re going, even at night.

Its sighting optic enables you to directly read the internal compass card found inside the fluid filled capsule. The sighting optic’s vertical lubber line allows you to make the most of the 1-degree compass card resolution. Its metal construction is workable in measuring your direction, whether latitude or longitude, or horizontal.

When it is floating, it can dial a scale of up to 360 degrees, same is true on its rotary dial.

PROS:

  • Entirely waterproof and durable
  • Lightweight and small
  • Easy to carry
  • Reliable over time
  • Inexpensive purchase price
 CONS:

  • Not ideal hinges
  • Owner’s manual is somewhat difficult to understand
  • Face is made with plastic

Related: The K & R Cordura Compass Case is great for anyone who wants a simple pocket for their compass to fit into. It Velcro’s at the top to keep the compass secure and it fits right on your belt so it’s easily accessible when you need it.

Check the price on Amazon

Wetterlings Splitting Hatchet

Price: Approx. $100Wetterlings Splitting Hatchet

Weight: 44.8 ounces

Dimensions: 20 x 7 x 1 inches

Specific features: Edge hardness HRC57, American hickory handle,  20-year warranty, hand-forged carbon hatchet blade, manufactured in Sweden

Best use: Bushcraft, camping/backpacking, outdoor activities

As its name suggests, the Wetterlings Splitting Hatchet is specifically designed to split chunks of wood large enough to fit into a stove. It sharpens easily in less than 2 minutes without a file and it is more suitable than the Wetterlings Buddy and Wilderness Hatchets due to the shape of its head, long handle and its weight.

The hand-forged carbon blade has alloyed steel and comes with a locally produced, vegetable tanned leather sheath. Its overall profile is very thin and provides a super sharp cutting edge for getting right in there. You won’t have any problem cutting anything you need and being right there when it comes time for chopping some new wood.

Because the edge is so hard you won’t have to worry about getting enough power and the handle definitely helps with that, providing just the right length. Great for smaller chunks of wood, this hatchet uses high-quality materials to provide enhanced durability and overall longevity.

PROS:

  • Hand forged in Sweden
  • Alloyed steel and carbon
  • Vegetable tanned leather sheath
  • Moderate pricing
  • Good quality grain handle
 CONS:

  • Handle is somewhat rough
  • Not fully sharpened out of the box
  • Axe head cover is not secure

Related: The Rothco O.D. Canvas Axe Sheath is great because it’s inexpensive and simple but it still protects your edge and makes sure that you’re ready to go whenever you want.

Check the price on Amazon

Bahco Laplander Folding Saw

Price: Approx. $20Bahco Laplander Folding Saw

Weight: 4 ounces

Dimensions: 11 x 4 x 2 inches

Specific features: Developed for a general purpose, 8 in of blade to cut dry and green wood, bone or plastic, two-component plastic handle with leather strap for great grip

Best use: Specifically developed for hunters, campers and wildlife enthusiasts

The Bahco Laplander Folding Saw features a 9 in a blade and is among the most useful pieces of equipment in the arsenal of any bushcrafter. It has a well-put-together design that is similar to a traditional folding knife.

If top-notch sawing capabilities, are what you are looking for in a folding saw, this tool should be your first option. Factors like portability, fit and finish, and overall feel might be considered as well considering the tight competition in the market.

Capable of chewing directly through logs with no problem, this folding saw keeps you from bouncing off the log and makes sure that you’re protected no matter what you want to do. Long-lasting and durable, the low-friction coating means that you don’t have to worry about overheating when you’re using this knife for an extended period of time.

With this blade, you don’t have to worry about much of anything, even carrying it with you, because it has a plastic handle and leather strap included.

PROS:

  • Coated to be rust resistant
  • Cuts any kind of material
  • Locks when folded
  • Inexpensive to purchase
  • Efficient cutting quality
 CONS:

  • Not ideal for green wood
  • Not useable with Ferro rod
  • Too small for some uses

Related: The Lansky Puck Sharpener is designed to help you get your blade a whole lot sharper, so it’s ready for you to go whenever you want. You won’t have a problem here with carrying the sharpener or anything else because it’s also small and lightweight.

Check the price on Amazon

MSR MiniWorks EX Microfilter

Price: Approx. $65MSR MiniWorks EX Microfilter

Weight: 28.8 ounces

Dimensions: 7 x 10 x 4 inches

Specific features: Durable ceramic/carbon element offering taste-free water, heavy use and safety, repeated cleaning for full filter recovery without requiring any tool

Best use: Bushcraft, camping/backpacking, hiking, trekking

The MSR MiniWorks EX Microfilter is suitable for frequent backcountry travelers since it offers you a long-lasting filter that cleans pesticides and chemicals from water without leaving any odors or tastes behind.

The AirSpring Accumulator helps get rid of all of those chemicals, bacteria and toxins a whole lot faster as well, as quickly as 1 liter per minute. Easy to take apart for cleaning and care, this water filter is definitely going to provide you with the quality that you’re looking for no matter where you are or where you’re getting your water from.

Shorter hikes and camping trips can benefit from this filter due to its economic and reliable offering. Moderately priced for a water filter, it’s definitely something you want to have with you because it can be used extensively and it gets rid of nearly all harmful materials, leaving behind clean and clear water.

The weight is good on this unit and it’s not too large to comfortably and easily store in a pack when you’re heading out on a backpacking trip or anything else.

PROS:

  • Filters up to 1 liter per minute
  • Easy to disassemble and clean
  • Moderate price
  • Filters last a long time
  • Durable build quality
 CONS:

  • Needs cleaning more frequently than some
  • Not ideal for larger groups
  • Water can pump somewhat slow

Related: You’ll need something to drink your freshly cleaned water out of and the Nalgene Tritan Water Bottle is great. It’s BPA free so you don’t have to worry about chemicals being added to your water after it’s filtered and it’s large enough that you can store plenty of clean water and drink it easily.

Check the price on Amazon

Sawyer Mini Water Filtration System

Price: Approx. $20Sawyer Mini Water Filtration System

Weight: 5.6 ounces

Dimensions: 8 x 3.5 x 3 inches

Specific features: Workable filter that can fit in the palm, attaches to included hydration packs, standard disposable water bottles, drinking pouch or straw for direct drinking from the water source

Best use: Bushcraft, hiking, scouting, camping/backpacking, outdoor recreation

The lightest available filter, the Sawyer Mini Water Filtration System is award-winning and can either be attached to the bottle’s top portion or can be used as a straw-style filter. This water filter is less likely to break when highly needed in the wilderness since it does not have batteries or moving parts.

It is dependable and can work for several years, depending on how frequently it is used. It also allows you to drink directly from a water source rather than needing a secondary place to store the water. This can be great if you’re trying to travel as light as possible and not carry a lot of extra items.

Available in a range of different colors and patterns, this filter is great for international travel or any kind of emergency preparedness needs. It’s able to remove nearly all bacteria, including salmonella, cholera and E.coli. Able to filter up to 10,000 gallons, you’ll get a squeeze pouch, drinking straw and cleaning plunger included in the set.

PROS:

  • Can be used directly in the water source
  • Easy to use
  • Lasts up to 10,000 gallons
  • Lightweight to carry
  • Cleans nearly all bacteria and other contaminants
 CONS:

  • Slow when drinking directly through the filter
  • Can be difficult to fill the pouches from small water sources
  • Difficult to use with hydration packs

Related: Additional squeeze pouches can make it easier to store the water that you want as you go and these Sawyer Squeezable Pouches are designed to work right with this filter. You get three new ones in this pack and they’re inexpensive, which is great if you’re going to be traveling minimalist.

Check the price on Amazon

Solo Stove Lite Backpacking Stove

Price: Approx. $70Solo Stove Lite Backpacking Stove

Weight: 8.96 ounces

Dimensions: 4.25 x 3.8 x 3.8 inches

Specific features: A patented-design stove that has a double wall, creating an ultra-thin gasification and a secondary combustion, burns fuel with less smoke, lightweight and quick boil time, nichrome wire and premium stainless steel, space saving

Best use: Bushcraft, backpacking/camping, hiking

The highly recommended, Solo Stove Lite Backpacking Stove, has already proven its durability, and can be considered as one of the best wood-burning stoves for backpackers, survivalists, campers and hikers.

This eco-friendly and compact stove is a must-have outdoor kit, as it burns hotter using less fuel with its patented design and distinctive secondary combustion. It is tested and proven to overpower aluminum pots when it comes to durability and safety. Not only that, but it can boil in approximately 8-10 minutes, giving you more time for other things.

Also, its cleaner burn technique equates to higher efficiency and less smoke. Emergency situations can easily be dealt with through the help of this tool. It also frees up more space in your backpack and frees you from carrying large, polluting and pricey containers.

As for the “fuel”, pine cones, wood, leaves and twigs, can all be used, making it environmentally friendly. It can be a great bushcraft tool, but not for long hikes because it can be a bit overweight for this activity.

PROS:

  • Nature-friendly and wood burning
  • Stainless steel for durability and anti-rust
  • Boils in 8-10 minutes
  • Lightweight and easy to carry
  • Burns very clean
 CONS:

  • Pot holder is loose on the stove
  • Somewhat bulky
  • Can be somewhat ‘tippy’

Related: A good quality pot is definitely necessary if you’re going to have a small camp stove. This one is inexpensive and holds just enough for you and maybe even a friend so you can have a great meal while you’re out in the wilderness with the Solo Pot 900.

Check the price on Amazon

Wilderness Solutions Amber FireLight Fire Piston

Price: Approx. $50Wilderness Solutions Amber FireLight Fire Piston

Weight: 2.4 ounces

Dimensions: 3.4 x 0.75 inches

Specific features: A survival fire ignition tool that uses the air you breath, developed in a transparent design, ignites organic tinder through spontaneous combustion

Best use: Bushcraft, backpacking/camping, outdoor activities

The Wilderness Solutions Amber FireLight Fire Piston is reputed as the most amazing fire starting tool for survival. This is the hottest in firing and the latest state-of-the-art development in compression fire starting. The tinder placed in its end part is spontaneously ignited through the compression-produced heat with just a single push.

The ignition glows without any effort greater than air. The piston can ignite in various natural tinders found in the fields and woods. You can actually get char cloth with one hit, making it a very reliable tool assuming that the tinder is dry.

It may take you some time to practice its proper use, but it provides definite ease and fun and life-saving feature once you can already figure out the trick. It also serves as a great teaching tool with its designed function for scouting students.

PROS:

  • Comes with Ferro-rod
  • Multiple seals for safety
  • Easy and quick to light
  • Durable and strong
  • Requires very little material to start
 CONS:

  • Easy to overpack chamber
  • Somewhat larger than expected
  • Can be difficult to learn

Related: If you’re looking for something small that will keep smaller items protected from the rain and water around you then the Generic Outdoor Waterproof Box is a great choice. For these pistons, it keeps them safe and protected until you’re ready to use them and you won’t have a problem getting them out and keeping them dry.

Check the price on Amazon

Zebra Loop Handle Pot

Price: Approx. $20Zebra Loop Handle Pot

Weight: 16 ounces

Dimensions: 4.70 inches, 5.51 inches, and 6.29 inches diameters

Specific features: Made of corrosion-resistant stainless steel that can be cleaned easily, almost indestructible and highly resistant to animals, available in three sizes

Best use: Bushcraft, camping, picnicking, travel, outdoor activities

The Zebra Loop Handle Pot is a portable cookware set that is best suited for outdoorsmen. The internal dish of this pot, is definitely unique, allowing you to cook or steam inside the main pot or use it as a plate after cooking.

Everything in this pot is kept in place during your transport due to its positive locking handle. Its small handle packs easier because it does not protrude. It has quality stainless steel material, making it a durable bushcraft tool.

Made with stainless steel to resist corrosion, this pot is also nearly indestructible, making it a great choice for those who may not be quite as delicate with their tools. It’s easy to carry, hold or even hang over the fire because of the handle and especially the notched center of the handle.

You definitely shouldn’t have a problem keeping it protected and getting your food heated up to just the right temperature in no time at all. You’ll love sitting down to meals with this.

PROS:

  • Several size options
  • Corrosion resistant stainless steel
  • Locking handle
  • Protects from animals
  • Well-made and durable
 CONS:

  • Plastic clip is not ideal
  • Heat transfers to handle
  • Needs some adjustments to get started

Related: You will definitely need some silverware to eat your meals that you make in this dish and the BestDealGift Foldable Cutlery here is definitely a great option. Inexpensive and quality while also folding up small for ease, this is a great option for just about anyone.

Check the price on Amazon

Wrap Up

We have reached the end of our post. After reading the entire article, you know that bushcraft tools are going to be important for your next adventure because they could mean the difference between making your trip a whole lot more pleasant and safe and it being a disaster.

You also learned that with good quality tools, you’ll be able to fix just about anything and that’s going to mean a lot when you don’t have any other way to call for help. So, what else is there left to do? Well, now that you know which features should be considered when looking for bushcraft tools, you should make a list of features that are most important to you, go through the reviews again, and single out the products you think will serve you best.

Stihl folding knife

After that, see how they fit your budget and keep in mind that you should be looking for the best quality to price ratio, so going for the cheaper ones doesn’t always mean you will be happy at the end. However, every single product on our list is one of the best in its class so wherever your final choice (or choices) land, you will not be making a mistake.

Now, it’s time to share your thoughts. What do you think about these tips for choosing your best tools? Do you have other tools that you absolutely couldn’t go without on your next wilderness trip? We definitely want to hear all about those tools and what you have to say about these.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jerry Mueller

Jerry Mueller

Jerry ‘Boy Scout’ Mueller spends 99% of his time camping or teaching others how to live in the wild. He became an Eagle Scout which is the highest rank attainable in the Boy Scouting division when he was 17 and after that he still lives the scout life. Jerry always plans neatly every trip, takes leadership very seriously and if you listen to his tips and stories, you can learn tons of useful things.