A good small functional axe is always a must-have in any outdoorsman’s backpack. I recently got a chance to review the Off Grid Tools Survival Axe and was not disappointed. This axe is small enough to fit in a backpack and just the right amount of weight to chop wood for a fire or hammer in some tent stakes. The Off Grid Tools Survival Axe has 31 built-in features for just about any survival condition. It is also a great option to keep in your car for an emergency situation. It is a well-designed axe.
The Off Grid Tools Survival Axe comes equipped with 31 different functions. This is the most fully equipped axe I have seen. Let’s look at some of its features.
I was able to test this axe, including several of its features. The first thing a noticed was how well it feels in your hands. It has a nice grip and weight. It is easy to carry around.
The blade of this axe is sharp, right out of its sheath. The Off Grid Tools Survival Axe easily chopped the wood I had on hand, so you could build a fire. With any axe, it’s size will limit how long it can take to chop a pile of wood. This axe gave me even and effective strikes.
The 6-inch saw did a decent job sawing through a piece of wood. It did take a bit of effort to get a rhythm going. It is a nice feature to have in an axe. Many times a saw can be helpful when building a structure because it allows for smooth cuts when compared to an axe. The saw blade locked firmly into place during sawing and folded up into the handle nicely after I was done.
Hammer and Claw
The hammer is well sized and shaped. It easily drove in loose nails. It also comes with an effective hammer claw and pry bar. I was really impressed with these features. It truly makes this axe a survival axe.
The protective sheath is made of nylon and covers the axe well. It has a Velcro strap the holds it firmly in place. It also has a convenient loop to attach it to a carabiner or tie down.
The Off Grid Tools Survival Axe is small enough to fit snugly into my backpack. I was easily able to place it in my pack and zip it up. You could also attach it to the outside of your pack to save room.
Product Dimensions: 11.5 x 5.5 x 1.2 inches
Weight: 1.7 pounds
420 stainless steel full tang
Where to buy:
The Off Grid Tools Survival Axe is available at these retailers.
The Off Grid Tools Survival Axe is a great option to have in your backpack. It elevates the need to carry a separate axe and saw. This can help save room and weight in your pack. Overall I would recommend this axe to anyone who wants a small functional axe to bring on a hike, out in the bush or on a camping trip. This axe will have a permanent home in my pack. Disclaimer: I was provided this product for an honest review.
The MPOWERD Luci inflatable solar light is a compact, lightweight and waterproof LED light the folds up flat and takes up very little room in a backpack. This light is perfect to hang in a tent or for additional light around the campsite. It is also very practical in an emergency situation. It comes with a solar panel to keep it fully charged throughout the day. The batteries will last 24 hours on a full charge.
Compact and Lightweight
The MPOWERD Luci inflatable solar light takes up an inconsequential amount of space. It folds up to just a one-inch profile and weighs only 4.4 oz. When inflated the light expands to 4.25 inches.
The MPOWERD Luci inflatable solar light has 4 lighting modes. Low, medium, high, and flashing. This is perfect for many applications. You can adjust the lighting to suit your needs.
This light gives off 75 lumens of light. It has 10 LED lights that are cool and provide ample light for reading and cooking around the campsite. The MPOWERD Luci inflatable solar light provides a cool white light. If you want a warmer light you may want to consider a flame light like the UCO Original Candle Lantern or a warmer LED light like the Black Diamond Apollo.
The MPOWERD Luci will provide up to 24 hours of light on a 7-hour charge in the sun. That is a significant amount of light for a 7-hour charge. There is also a battery level indicator to show you how much juice you have left.
This lantern comes with two durable adjustable straps, so you can hang the lantern off your backpack, tent, or tree. It can also sit flat and upright on the ground.
Dual straps (1 adjustable)
Diameter: 12.7 cm / 5 in
Height: 10.2 cm / 4.25 in inflated | 2.5 cm / 1 in collapsed
Weight: 4.4 oz / 125 g
4 modes: low, medium, high, 1 sec flashing
Press and hold the power button for 3 seconds to shut off
10 cool white LEDs, 75 lumens
1000 mAh Lithium-Ion Polymer Battery
Lasts up to 24 hours
Charges in 7 hours of direct sunlight
Battery level indicator
Waterproof: IP67 rating
Operating temp: 15°F – 122°F (-10°C – 50°C)
Where to Buy:
The MPOWERD Luci inflatable solar light is available at these retailers:
The MPOWERD Luci inflatable solar light is great for any backpacker, hiker, or bushcrafter. It provides ample light in a solar-efficient and lightweight profile. It provides free light powered by the sun. The applications are endless.
If you are looking for a small lightweight, low tech, back to nature flame lantern you should consider the UCO collapsible candle lantern. It provides nice warm candlelight in an enclosed windproof container. This candle lantern is perfect for any outdoorsman or nature lover. There is no need for batteries or switches. Just light the candle and enjoy up to 9 hours of natural light. UCO has been producing these types of lights for many years and backpackers love using them. We think these candle lanterns are great to have in your pack for any nighttime light.
The UCO collapsible candle lantern is designed to be an efficient source of candlelight. It is constructed of aluminum with a glass housing for the flame. There is proper venting at the top to allow heat and smoke to escape. These candle lanterns also come in many different colors and materials.
The UCO candle lantern collapses down to 4.25 inches and expands to 6.5 inches. It weighs 8.8 oz. This makes it small enough to fit in a rucksack, glove compartment or even in a kitchen drawer for an emergency situation.
The candle is placed in a spring-loaded compartment that automatically advances the candle when the wick gets low. This ensures a consistent flame and light source. Regular candles will not work in the UCO lantern. It requires custom made candles. You can buy extra candles from UCO. There are some people making there own candles on YouTube.
Make Your Own UCO Candles
The UCO collapsible candle lantern comes equipped with a hanging handle and chain. This allows you to hang the lantern low enough and away from objects to minimize the risk of fires.
Lighting the UCO candle lantern is easy. Just slide down the glass partition and light. It is perfect for chilly environments because it does produce some heat. So be careful, when the lantern has been running for a while it will get hot, especially at the top vent area.
This candle lantern comes with a viewing slot on the side of the base, indicating how much candle is left. One candle can last up to 9 hours. Once your candle is done. Just unscrew the bottom and insert a new candle into the spring-loaded base and screw tight.
Where to Buy:
The UCO collapsible candle lantern is available at these retailers.
The UCO collapsible candle lantern offers excellent natural warm light. It is perfect for backpacking, camping or emergency events. It is compact and lightweight. We highly recommend this lantern for any outdoorsman.
The Zebra Loop Handle Pot is an all in one portable cookware set perfect for all your outdoor activities. What makes the Billy Pot unique is the internal dish that allows you to steam or cook inside the main pot itself. You can also use the dish to eat out of after cooking. Grand Trunks Billy Pot is made out of durable 18-10 stainless steel that will resist corroding, provide years of use and still look great. The positive locking handle keeps everything in place during transport.
The pot can be used to cook over a camp stove or fire
Steam/cook food away from direct heat in the dish that fits into the top of the pot
Notch in the handle makes it easy to hang the pot over a fire
Pot is available in three sizes: 12cm, 14cm, and 16cm diameters
Shipping Weight: 1 pound
The Zebra Loop Handle Pot is a well-made product. Unlike so many other camping items, especially cookware, that seem so flimsy and cheap, this is quality. Well made, sturdy, no rattles, great looking, functional, and long-lasting. The Zebra Loop Handle Pot is an amazingly built pot. It’s high-quality stainless steel, well constructed, and durable. The manufacturing is flawless with no signs of weak points or other worrisome details.
The Zebra Loop Handel Pot comes in several sizes. The 10cm and 12cm sizes are useful for a single person hiking or camping. The larger sizes would be for 2 people at most. A big eater may want the larger size for themselves. The 10cm pot is 4″ in diameter, the 12cm pot is roughly 4.75″ in diameter, the 14cm and 16cm are 5.5″ and 6.25″ in diameter. It doesn’t seem like a big difference, but in terms of pack size and volume of the containers, it is a big difference between them all.
The lid and tray fit soundly into the pot with little room to spare. Once the handle is raised to lock the plastic retainer tab, there is no rattle or movement. The 2 plastic clips automatically open and close as the handle is raised or lowered, this is great for cooking. The lid fits tight and has a small handle that does not protrude so it packs a little easier.
This pot is meant to be used over a fire, not in the fire. The plastic clips hold up well to the heat, as long as you do not put them into the fire. The handle is sturdy and strong and has a slight divot in the center to give it stability when hanging over a fire.
Where to Buy:
The Zebra Loop Handle Pot is available from these retailers:
If you are looking for a sleek and compact survival kit that is combined in a flashlight then the VSSL Survival Light is for you. It is made of a rugged waterproof container. Each flashlight kit comes in small containers that contain survival utilities. The kit comes with two threaded caps on each end, a flashlight on one end and a compass on the other. The flashlight has 3 LED lights and has 3 modes: bright, dim, and SOS. The flashlight has a broad ‘flood’ based lantern light that will illuminate a large area. It will offer 20+ hours of continuous light and 40+ hours of SOS display. The survival containers fit neatly into the cylinder saving space.
Included in The Survival Kit
Dual-mode (static and SOS) LED ‘flood’ beam lantern light, illuminates a large area (batteries included)
Compass (oil filled)
4-hour pure Canadian beeswax candle
6 Aquatabs® water purification tablets
Wire saw (high tensile, 60lb working strength with handle straps)
Aluminum beadles’ emergency whistle
Tinder Quik® fire starters
Marine-grade rope (250lb breaking strength)
Reflective trail markers
P38 Military GI Type can opener
VSSL priorities of survival and instructions
Includes a one-year limited warranty
Where to Buy:
The VSSL Survival Light Kit is available from these retailers:
The VSSL Survival Light Kit product is very well made and the design is quite innovative. The product got most of it’s funding through a Kickstarter campaign. We recommend this kit to anyone who wants a small, sleek and cool all in one survival kit.
With the Vargo Titanium Hexagon Wood Stove, there is no need to go out foraging for firewood. You just pull down a small dead limb, and you have your firewood. You can use pieces of wood about the size of a finger or smaller. Break it into 3-inch lengths, and you have your firewood cut! On wilderness trips where you don’t need a full-on fire use the Vargo Stove. No need to wait for coals. You have a cooking fire in a minute. The fire burns itself out minutes after you’re done cooking.
Slim and compact design
Folds flat requiring little pack space
Completely hinged side panels easily snap together for quick setup
Conical shape focuses heat upward towards your pot for quick and efficient cooking
The Vargo Wood Stove folds up nicely and easily fits back into its storage pouch. The pouch is closed by a Velcro patch that runs the length of the opening. It does a good job of protecting the rest of your gear from the sharp edges and soot. Great overall stove.
Where to Buy:
The Vargo Titanium Hexagon Wood Stove is available from these retailers:
Tops Knives Brothers of Bushcraft Hunter Knife Review
The Fieldcraft Knife was designed by The Brothers of Bushcraft, a coalition of men across North America focusing on sharing wilderness living skills of all categories. This knife has great steel, holds a wonderful edge, and is relatively easy to sharpen. It has a nice size and balance. It’s on the larger heavier end of being a bushcraft knife, but it’s not unwieldy. It comes with a great well made sheath. The handle material is quite nice, the grip-ability is good even when wet and it’s very easy to see without being obnoxiously bright. The handling and ergonomics of this knife make it very easy to use.
Overall Length: 10″
Blade Length: 4 1/2″
Handles: Tan Canvas Micarta
Sheath: Black Kydex
Blade Thickness: 3/16″
Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
The blade is a modified scandi grind. This will make this knife extremely durable and will take some heavy abuse. This is an extremely well-made knife. You can beat the heck out of it and it just laughs at you like, is that all you’ve got?!
Where to Buy:
The Tops Knives Brothers of Bushcraft Hunter Knife is available from these retailers:
The knowledge of primitive fire-making skills is something every outdoorsman or bushcrafter should know. Having the right tools to facilitate this process is a must. This is where the Flint and Steel come in handy. Each one of these kits is handmade and forged. The team at Flint-and-Steel Ltd. (www.flint-and-steel.com) has done a great job making these kits. Having this compact kit in your pack is a great way to have a ready-made fire source in just about any condition. There is nothing like making a fire with your own two hands.
My first impression of the Flint & Steel Fire Starter Kit is it is well made and crafted. The kit consists of a small tin box in which each component fits snug. It has a nice size piece of flint and a good amount of Jute Twine. The firesteel or striker can be easily grasped by the fingers. It has a good weight to it. The char cloth container is compact and has a good supply inside. It also contains a useful color illustrated instruction insert that explains how to use the kit to make a fire. There are fire starter kits also available in a variety of custom-made leather pouches.
My first step was to make a twine bundle for my ember to catch. I cut 5 pieces of twine into 4-inch strips. Then I unwound each thread to separate fibers. I created a bundle of fibers that my charcloth could sit in. It is important to gather, cut, and stage all of your wood before you start a fire. This will allow you to get your fire up and running quickly.
I took a piece of char cloth from the tin and placed it above the flat side of the flint. It took 5 or 6 strikes to get a spark to land on the char cloth. It did not take much of a spark to get the cloth to light. I was very surprised at how quickly it took. I would recommend doing a few practice strikes without the char cloth first to get a feel of how hard you should strike to get a spark.
Having Things Prepared
Once I landed a spark on the char cloth, I placed it into my twine bundle and began to gently blow into it. It did not take much blowing on the bundle before it erupted into flames.
We Have Fire
I have to say this may be my go-to method and kit to make a fire. The whole process is a great way to get connected with the basics of starting a fire. It also makes you connect with nature in a primitive way. The whole process was very easy, enjoyable, and relaxing.
Where to Buy:
These fire starter kits are available for sale in their Etsy store or website:
Teton Sports TrailHead +20 Ultralight Sleeping Bag Review
The Teton TrailHead +20 Ultralight Sleeping is designed with 7-denier woven fiberfill, shoulder and zipper baffles, and drawstring hood. It has a breathable, soft, double-brushed liner. Innovative PolarLite insulation keeps you warm even though the entire bag is thin and light. The zipper pulls inside and outside of the bag offers easy closure. It also has a mummy-style hood with a shoulder baffle and drawstring. The sleeping bag has taped, anti-snag zippers, a full-length zipper draft tube, and a zippered inner pocket for valuables.
Longer and wider 87″ x 32″ x 22″ size fits larger frames
Built-in foot box provides comfort for toes even when lying on your back
Interior pocket zips to safely hold electronics or wallet
The Solo Stove is a unique wood-burning stove that incorporates a secondary combustion for a more efficient and cleaner burn. The bottom vents allow air to enter and flow up the bottom of the grate to feed the primary combustion, a top-down smolder. In addition, air entering in from the bottom vents heats up within the inner wall and rises up and out the top firebox vents causing a secondary combustion at the top of the stove. The Solo Stove actually cooks the smoke out of the wood and then burns the smoke not once, but twice! This technique makes for a cleaner burn which means less smoke and higher efficiency.
Product Dimensions: 3.8 x 3.8 x 4.2 inches
Solo Stoves use twigs, leaves, pinecones, and wood as fuel.
Made of premium stainless steel and nichrome wire.
Nylon stuff sack included.
A unique secondary combustion process lets this stove achieve a highly efficient and more complete burn. This means you’ll use fewer twigs to achieve a boil. It also means less smoke while cooking. The Solo Stove only weighs 9 oz and eliminates the need to carry fuel canisters. Which is a great way to lighten your load. It also nests inside most pots leaving you with more space in your pack.
Where to Buy:
The Solo Stove Wood Burning Backpacking Stove is available from these retailers:
By using renewable resources for fuel instead of petroleum, you’re reducing your carbon footprint. You’ll also keep fuel canisters out of the landfill. The Solo Stove is well built for any bushcraft need.