Top 7 Best Bushcraft Tomahawks | 2020 Reviews (SOG, Estwing)

When completing your bushcraft kit before the next adventure begins, one of the popular items to get is a knife, but you should never forget about getting the best bushcraft tomahawk as well. While a great knife can be convenient, its much bigger counterpart, the tomahawk, can do a lot more heavy-duty bushcraft tasks that a knife wouldn’t be able to.

While a lot of people know about bushcraft knives, but only a few are aware of how effective tomahawks are when you are in a survival situation in the wild.

The best bushcraft tomahawk is not just a tool you can use for cutting. It’s a much better and lighter version of an ax you can carry in your bushcraft activities, something you can also use in breaking down whatever barriers you find in the wilderness or for chopping wood. It is also a very powerful weapon for self-defense or hunting.

Top 7 Best Bushcraft Tomahawk in Review

In a matter of life and death, especially in the wilderness, any tomahawk can be an excellent tactical addition to your survival kit. But choosing the best bushcraft tomahawk can be a tricky job, especially with all the brands, styles, designs, construction, features, and specifications available for you to choose from.

In this article, we are going to look at some of the high-rated bushcraft tomahawks you can find in the market. We will look further on what these tomahawks can offer from their features and specs, material quality and durability, and their overall performance and durability to help you better choose the best bushcraft tomahawk that fits your needs and preferences.

We’ve also included a definitive buying guide to help you make an informed decision about the features and specifications that makes some tomahawks ideal for bushcraft use than others.

If you don’t have enough time to read the entire article, here is a summary of the best bushcraft tomahawk you can find in the market. Though they may have different styles, designs, features, and specs, they work great depending on your bushcraft needs.

  1. SOG Fasthawk Throwing Bushcraft Tomahawk – Best Overall Bushcraft Tomahawk
  2. SOG Camp Bushcraft Tomahawk – Best Lightweight and Compact
  3. Estwing Sportsman’s Bushcraft Tomahawk – Best for Camping
  4. Schrade SCAXE2 Small Axe – Best Affordable Option
  5. CRKT Kangee Tomahawk – Best for Multi-Purpose Use
  6. Kershaw 1073X Siege Tomahawk – Best for Durability
  7. United Cutlery M48 Hawk – Best for Beginners

#1. SOG Fasthawk Throwing Tomahawk – Best Overall Bushcraft Tomahawk

SOG Fasthawk Throwing Tomahawk

Specifications:

  • Blade Material: 420 Stainless Steel
  • Finish: Black
  • Grip Material: Glass-reinforced nylon
  • Length: 5 inches
  • Weight: 19 ounces
  • Sheath Material: Ballistic nylon

You don’t have to break the bank to get a high-quality and functional tomahawk. If you want the best bushcraft tomahawk that offers great value for your money, then look no further than the SOG Fasthawk Throwing Tomahawk. It’s a low-cost tactical tomahawk that is well-known for its versatility.

The 5-inches blade is made with 420 stainless steel that is as good for hand-to-hand combat as it is good for chopping wood. It also features a vertical adze at the opposite side of the blade, which is ideal for digging. The flat bottom of the handle of this tomahawk works very well for breaking down windows and doors too.

And while the blade and the handle for the SOG Fasthawk are two separate materials, it only has a slight imbalance that aid perfectly when chopping. The handle grip is made with glass-reinforced nylon that offers a secure textured surface for the best traction.

The 19 ounces weight of this tomahawk is one of its selling points. Its very lightweight, thanks its specially designed blade, which features two round holes that help minimize its overall weight. Its lightweight and portability, however, doesn’t compromise its heavy-duty properties. The stainless steel blade comes with a sleek black finish for extra durability.

The only downside about this tomahawk is that there is no available replacement for the handle if it happens to break.

ProsCons
Quality square stainless steel blade materialNo replacement available once the handle is broken
Durable nylon grip with glass reinforcement
Well-balanced and lightweight
Vertical adze used for digging
Can be used for throwing

#2. SOG Camp Axe – Best Lightweight and Compact Tomahawk

SOG Camp Axe

Specifications:

  • Blade Material: Stainless steel
  • Finish: satin polished
  • Grip Material: glass-reinforced nylon
  • Length: 5 inches
  • Weight: 1 pound
  • Sheath Material: glass-reinforced nylon

Another great option for the best bushcraft tomahawk comes from SOG. The simple SOG Camp Axe is the best option if you are looking for a very light and compact tomahawk that you can bring with you in long hiking hours in the wilderness. This multi-use survival tool only weighs a pound, and it is one of the lightest tomahawks you can find in the market. It is extremely lightweight that you won’t even notice you are carrying it.

And while its relatively non-existent weight is the greatest advantage of the SOG Camp Axe, it’s not the only feature it offers. For any survival situation, this tool can be very dependable, especially with its stainless steel blade that is strong enough for chopping wood or cutting barriers on your way. It also features a flat adze at the opposite side of the blade that you can use for hammering.

This tomahawk also boasts a glass-reinforced nylon material for its handle, which provides incredible grip. You don’t have to worry about it slipping from your hands while you are chopping wood. Plus, its lightweight nature makes the SOG Camp Axe and ideal agile weapon in any self-defense situation.

This tomahawk also comes with a sheath for protection, although it doesn’t offer much of a coverage. And while the SOG Camp Axe might be a bit smaller for some, it’s the perfect option for those who are looking for a small and lightweight but heavy-duty tomahawk to bring around when they do bushcraft activities.

ProsCons
Features a flat adze ideal for hammering
Might be a bit small for some bushcraft tasks
Quality stainless steel material
Agile weapon ideal for combat
Provided excellent nylon grip
Extremely lightweight

#3. Estwing Sportsman’s Axe – Best Tomahawk for Camping

Estwing Sportman's Axe

Specifications:

  • Blade Material: Steel
  • Finish: hand-polished steel
  • Grip Material: lacquered leather
  • Length: 14 inches
  • Weight: 86 pounds
  • Sheath Material: black nylon

When going camping, there are a lot of tasks you have to carry out, and usually, that involves cutting tree limbs you can use to create fire or cut through branches of trees to make a shelter. In that case, you’ll need something like the Estwing Sportsman’s Axe. It features a hybrid and slightly elongated design with its 14 inches long blade that is ideal for camping and other bushcraft activities.

The lengthy blade head for this tomahawk provides it with a hefty weight towards the head for an increase in momentum, which is essential when chopping. And while some tactical tomahawks can struggle with breaking tree limbs, that is not a problem with the Estwing Sportsman’s Axe. It can cut through the entire branch of trees without any problem.

Another selling point of this tomahawk is its excellent edge retention, which means it retains its steel blade sharpness for a long time. The unique design of the blade also makes it very easy to sharpen if necessary.

The Estwing Sportsman’s Axe is specifically designed to be chopping or cutting tomahawk, and that is obvious from the get-go. Its balance and the curvature in the handle doesn’t make it the best tomahawk for combat.

ProsCons
The leather handle is durable and long-lasting
The balance could be better for combat
The steel blade is very easy to sharpen
Made in the USA for guaranteed quality
Ideal length for chopping
Offers excellent balance

#4. Schrade SCAXE2 Small Axe – Best Affordable Option

Schrade SCAXE2 Small Axe

Specifications:

  • Blade Material: 3Cr13 with Titanium coating
  • Finish: none
  • Grip Material: rubber
  • Length: 8 inches
  • Weight: 1 pound
  • Sheath Material: thermoplastic

There are a lot of options for the best bushcraft tomahawk available in the market. It comes with many design options that offer a different set of features and functionalities, as well as price. If you are in a tight budget but don’t want to compromise a good quality when buying a bushcraft tomahawk, then you might want to consider getting the Schrade SCAXE2 Small Axe. For such an affordable price, it is surprisingly filled with some of the best features you can want in a bushcraft tomahawk.

For one, this survival tool is made with a titanium coated stainless steel material. It is strong and durable to carry out a lot of bushcraft tasks. The steel blade also features a curvature design to give it a maximum cutting area. And while it already boasts a razor-like edge, sharpening the stainless steel is very easy as well.

The rubber handle of the Schrade SCAXE2 Small Axe is not the most stylish, but it offers top-notch traction. It features a couple of fo contours to make sure that the tomahawk will not slip off of your hands while you are chopping wood. Plus, the rubber handle also boasts a vibration dampening capability, which comes very convenient to avoid missing your target when using the tomahawk for chopping.

The Schrade SCAXE2 is a relatively small tomahawk and weighs very light. While these features make it excellent for providing you with a great amount of agility during combat, its lightweight nature means it can’t create a lot of momentum, so it won’t likely be able to cut down large branches.

ProsCons
Surprisingly grippy rubber handleSome issues with quality control
Very affordable for its quality
Sharp stainless steel blade
Excellent edge retention
Lightweight

#5. CRKT Kangee Tomahawk – Best for Multi-Purpose Use

CRKT Kangee Tomahawk

Specifications:

  • Blade Material: SK5 Carbon Steel
  • Finish: none
  • Grip Material: Glass-reinforced nylon
  • Length: 5 inches
  • Weight: 53 pounds
  • Sheath Material: Boltaron with MOLLE compatibility

When doing bushcraft, you might be faced with a lot of tasks you need to be accomplished. In that case, you will need a single survival tool that can carry out a variety of things. And when it comes to multipurpose use while you are in the wilderness, the CRKT Kangee Tomahawk does the job like no other.

While it has a short blade at just five inches, it is designed to do a lot of things with compact, agility, and lightweight features. The blade is enough to be an effective tool for chopping. It also boasts a curved blade design to give it an additional surface area to cut deeper into the wood. The blade is made with SK5 carbon steel, so its durable, strong, and sharp not only for cutting wood but for shaving metal as well. The head also features an aggressive spike that makes digging the ground much easier.

Another well-loved feature of the CRKT Kangee Tomahawk is its handle made with glass-reinforced nylon. It features multiple protrusions that give your hand exceptional grip and control over the tool. And with its 1.5-pound weight, this tomahawk is extremely lightweight, easy, and well-balanced to handle during combat situations.

Another excellent about the design is its sheath with MOLLE compatibility and a shoulder strap, so it is easier for you to carry it around, especially deeper in the woods.

ProsCons
With multiple choke-up points for excellent grip
A bit on the expensive side
Small blade but with an aggressive spike
The sheath is MOLLE compatible
Offers agility for tactical use
Lightweight

#6. Kershaw 1073X Siege Tomahawk – Best for Durability

Kershaw 1073X Siege Tomahawk

Specifications:

  • Blade Material: 3Cr13 steel
  • Finish: Black oxide coating
  • Grip Material: glass-reinforced nylon
  • Length: 4 inches
  • Weight: 2 pounds
  • Sheath Material: black nylon

When it comes to bushcraft quality items, Kershaw has been one of the biggest names in the industry. Given its reputation for quality outdoor tools, they didn’t disappoint when it comes to the Kershaw 1073X Siege Tomahawk. It’s a no-frills tomahawk that offers a lot of value for your investment.

It has a four inches hatchet-style blade made using 3Cr13 steel that is so sharp than most tomahawks you can find in the market. It also comes with a full tang construction and a handle made of glass-reinforced nylon with a black oxide coating. The coating adds an extra-rugged feature to the tomahawk to make it resistant to corrosion and long-term bushcraft abuse, so it can survive no matter what activity you throw at it.

The Kershaw Siege Tomahawk is built to be a multi-functional tool that can do a lot of heavy-duty tasks from opening crates to breaching doors. The spike at the opposite side of the blade is excellent for penetration against any barrier during rescue scenarios. It also comes to wit a nail puller at the tail end of the handle, which also doubles as a pry bar.

At only two pounds, the Kershaw Siege Tomahawk is impressively well-balanced as both a camping tool and a self-weapon. Overall, the construction of its blade and handle is all about strength and durability.

ProsCons
Includes a sheath for protection from the bladeThe tang can be a bit short for some
Well balanced with a good weight
Very compact and easy to carry
The handle is riveted
Extremely lightweight

#7. United Cutlery M48 Hawk Axe – Best Tomahawk for Beginners

United Cutlery M48 Hawk Axe

Specifications:

  • Blade Material: 2Cr13 stainless steel
  • Finish: none
  • Grip Material: fiberglass reinforced nylon
  • Length: 3.75 inches
  • Weight: 3.3 pounds
  • Sheath Material: fiberglass nylon with snap button

There are a lot of options for the best bushcraft tomahawk in the market. Most of what you can find is specifically designed for a particular purpose. Some tomahawks are ideal for chopping, while some work best for throwing. But if you are looking for a basic tomahawk that is a great choice for beginners and those building their first-ever bushcraft kit, the United Cutlery M48 Hawk Axe is a good enough option.

This survival tool is very affordable, lightweight, and extremely versatile. It is designed for both utility and throwing purposes. The M48 Hawk Axe features an upswept and broad blade with an ultra-sharp spike at the opposite end. The head is made with high-quality stainless steel material with a black oxide coating for extra scratch and rust-resistant features combined with a reinforced nylon handle.

With a 3.3-pounds weight, the M48 Hawk Axe is very easy and lightweight to handle for beginners. The slip-resistant grooves in the handle also provide more security and safety against the tool from slipping off of your hands while you are using it.

It might not be the high-end tomahawk you can find, but the M48 Hawk Axe comes with all the basic features of the best bushcraft tomahawk that is ideal for light-duty outdoor tasks and beginners.

ProsCons
Quality nylon sheath for extra protection from the blade
The handle can get damaged over time
Can be easily attached to a belt
Long-lasting stainless steel material
Reinforced with three bolts
Lightweight

Top Pick – Best Bushcraft Tomahawk

There is no single tomahawk that will be the best option for everyone. The key is to find the best bushcraft tomahawk, which will largely depend on your needs or what you are using it for.

However, given the features and functionalities, the SOG Fasthawk Throwing Tomahawk is our best bet. It comes with a razor-sharp 420 stainless steel blade. What’s even better is it is heavy-duty that can withstand even the toughest bushcraft tasks while still being lighw2eight because of its unique blade design that features two round holes that makes it significantly lighter.

Overall, the SOG Fasthawk is not just for throwing purposes. It is well suited for survival duties and emergency tasks as well.


Three Main Types of Tomahawks

While there aren’t specifically designed bushcraft tomahawks, there are different types of survival tools that are great for bushcraft purposes.

#1. Tactical Tomahawk

Tactical tomahawks are what is often used by the military for hand-to-hand combat as well as for multipurpose use. This kind of tomahawk is specifically built for certain actions and purposes. It can be used for scaling mountains or building camps.

Tactical tomahawks are designed to offer excellent functionality and usually pack some weight to get the job done well, like chopping wood. This type of tomahawk is often designed with a blade and spike combination.

#2. Throwing Tomahawk

Throwing tomahawks are similar to what you can see in movies, the kind that can be easily thrown around as a joke or a competition. This type of tomahawk is ultra-lightweight and portable. Instead of hand-held purposes, throwing tomahawks are usually built for striking targets precisely, which makes them ideal for self-defense situations. Throwing tomahawks are pretty balanced as well for a better aim.

#3. Breaching Tomahawk

Out of all the types of tomahawks, breaching tomahawks are usually the most sturdy and heavy. They need the weight for their designed purpose, which is to breach any barrier from wooden doors to doors made of steel.


Features to Look for in the Best Bushcraft Tomahawk

With all the available choices of tomahawks in the market, choosing the best one for your bushcraft needs can be a bit challenging. Nevertheless, if you know the important features and functionalities that differentiate the best bushcraft tomahawk from others, it makes the job much easier.

Head Design/Style

There are a lot of options you can choose from when it comes to the shape and cutting edge of a tomahawk. Your popular options include a single head, a double head, and a head with a flat or a spike back, among many others.

Tomahawks with a combination of a double head and a spike are usually ideal for multitasking. You’ll get a large edge for cutting and chopping on one side and a precision tool at the opposite side.

Meanwhile, single head tomahawks are ideal for specific tasks, while double head ones are great for throwing.

Head Steel/Material

Aside from the shape and style of the head or the blade, another common feature that differentiates the best bushcraft tomahawk from others is the steel material used to make the tomahawk. The most common steel materials you can find are stainless steel and carbon steel. Stainless steel blades are highly resistant to rusting, while carbon steel and well-known for having excellent strength, sharpness, and edge retention.

Blade Coatings

Some tomahawks will feature a blade coating, which can be a simple black paint or a high-end offer like a fully ceracoated finish. One of the common reasons for these coatings is to provide extra protection to the blade against rusting.

However, be aware of some tomahawks with very thick blade coating as it can sometimes hamper the sharpness or the ability of the edge to cut through things.

Handle Material

The handle material for tomahawks also varies. Some come with wooden handles, which are usually the most comfortable option, especially in cold outdoor conditions. There are also other synthetic handle materials available such as Micarta, glass-reinforced nylon, and polypropylene. And while all of these options can work great, do check if it offers an excellent grip and won’t slip off of your hand while you are using it.

Handle Length

Tomahawks come in a variety of handle lengths, and choosing the best length will largely depend on your intended use. A tomahawk with a long handle is usually on the heavy side and is ideal for tasks like chopping trees, splitting wood, breaking locks, breaching doors, prying, piercing tough materials, and butchering large games.

Meanwhile, smaller tomahawk handles offer less weight and volume to pack. They tend to be more compact and offer effective use in a closed setting. Small handle tomahawks are ideal for carrying out tasks like throwing, evacuating vehicles, precision chopping, and butchering small games.

Grind

For knives, you’ll get a lot of options when it comes to blade grind, but not so much for tomahawks and ax. You can find tomahawks that features a slightly convex grind, but the most common is a simple v bevel design.

Weight

The tomahawks you can find in the market come with varying weight. In general, you need to select the weight of the tomahawk that will best serve your needs. If you are mostly going to use the tool for throwing, a much lighter tomahawk is ideal. Meanwhile, for chopping and cutting purposes, you’ll need a tomahawk that punches a little weight to get the job done efficiently.

Sheath

Usually, a sheath comes with every purchase of a tomahawk, but the material and quality differ. Traditional style for sheaths is made using leather, which is safe enough to pack your tomahawk inside your backpack while you travel. There are also ones made of Kydex, a robust molded plastic, which provides ideal protection if you are carrying the tool on your person.

Also, some tomahawks come with a nylon sheath, which is a low-cost option and doesn’t offer the same durability as leather and Kydex can.

Tomahawks are designed to be an all-around bushcraft tool as it offers strength, versatility, and durability. But, there is no single tomahawk that is best for everyone. Ultimately, you have to consider what specific tasks you might be using this item for and take note of the pertinent design factors you have to consider in finding the best bushcraft tomahawk.


Conclusion

Having the best bushcraft tomahawk can be a wonderful and convenient item in your survival kit. It’s an awesome survival accessory to have that can do a lot more than the knife you are carrying and much lighter than that ax you have at home.

With the best bushcraft tomahawk in hand when doing bushcraft, it’s a significant advantage to have when it comes to both basic survival and self-protection. With the countless options available for you to choose from, this review and buying guide should be able to give you a look at some of the best bushcraft tomahawk in the market and everything you have to consider when buying one. But, no single tomahawk is best for everyone. Ultimately, you have to choose a tomahawk that will best serve your bushcraft needs and preferences.


FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions):

✅ Does the bushcraft tomahawk size matter?

Bushcraft tomahawks are available in varying sizes. Small ones are often very compact and lightweight. However, their chopping power is usually compromised because of its small size. So, if you are getting a tomahawk for chopping wood, you’ll do better by getting around a two-foot-long bushcraft tomahawk.

✅ How sharp does a bushcraft tomahawk should be?

Tomahawks are often sharp enough for the specific purpose they are designed for, and you can sharpen it to your preference. Most tomahawks come from the factory having a sharp edge that is enough for chopping wood but not exactly as sharp as your knife.

Ultimately, the ideal sharpness for a tomahawk will mainly depend on how sharp you want it to be. Although sometimes, some enthusiasts prefer a sharper edge for their tomahawk, especially if they use it for processing their wild game. Sharper edges can usually do exact precision similar to a knife.

✅ How heavy should a tomahawk be?

The ideal weight of the tomahawk will largely depend on what you want to use it for. For example, if you want a tomahawk that is ideal for chopping, the ax head should be heavy enough to get the job done. Meanwhile, if you are planning to use a tomahawk in throwing, you’ll do better with getting a lighter one.

✅ What is the most important feature in a tomahawk construction?

When it comes to the overall construction of a bushcraft tomahawk, the most important feature to consider is the balance it offers between the handle and the blade. Tomahawks are often used in a variety of outdoor tasks. Thus, it should feel stable in your hands no matter what you are using it for.

However, the balance of the tomahawk will largely depend on what type of task it is designed for. For instance, a tomahawk specially created for chopping should have its weight leaning towards the blade for a better forward momentum.

✅ What type of tomahawk is used in the military?

Tomahawks designed for military use are often small and offers a great amount of agility for hand-to-hand combat. This type of tomahawk is usually designed with blunt ends, making it ideal for use in breaking windows or as hammers. Military tomahawks often have spikes at the tail end of the blade as well, which allows it to be utilized for digging trenches.

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