The Cutting Edge

The official blog of Knife Depot

Five Best Hatchets at Knife Depot

When I was a young kid in elementary school, I read Gary Paulsen’s wilderness novel called Hatchet. The story follows the survival efforts of a 13-year-old who crash lands in the middle of the woods, carrying nothing but his hatchet. From that point on, the hatchet became the coolest tool on the planet in my young eyes.

It’s almost two decades later now, but I still hold the hatchet in high regards because of its overall usefulness and feel. The weight of a good hatchet in your hand is unmatched.

In an effort to make the hatchet more accessible to newbies and experts alike, I’ve assembled the five best hatchets found at Knife Depot. If you have any you’d like to add to the list, feel free to let me know in the comments.

SOG Tactical Tomahawk


For those who don’t know, a hatchet is essentially a small axe that you can use with one hand. The term itself is not mutually exclusive, meaning certain axes and tomahawks can be considered hatchets. The first hatchet on the list is the SOG Tactical Tomahawk. It consistently gets rave reviews on sites like Amazon for its functional design, durability and great look. The tomahawk has a 15.75-inch overall length with a 2.75-inch edge on the stainless steel blade head. It also comes with a molded hard nylon sheath.

Estwing Camper’s Axe


Estwing is highly regarded in the world of axes, and this 16-inch camper’s axe is the perfect hatchet. Made from one piece of solid steel, the hatchet can handle anything you throw at it (or anything you throw it at). Around the handle is a shock-reduction grip to keep you from discomfort after excessive use. With its included leather sheath, this is probably one of the two best hatchets you can get that’s made in the USA.

Buy here.

Kershaw Camp Axe


If you noticed in the Estwing Camper’s Axe section, I said it was one of the two best hatchets made in the USA. Here’s the other one. The Kershaw Camp Axe is small with an 11-inch overall length, but it packs a big punch. The axe is forged from a single piece of high carbon steel and features a Krayton handle. Because this hatchet is so small and light, you’ll be more likely to carry it with you and have it in unexpected survival situations.

Buy here.

Gerber Gator Axe Combo II


What could make a fantastically designed hatchet even better? Stick a long serrated saw into its handle. The Gerber Gator Axe Combo II gives you both of these great tools. The hatchet itself has an overall length of 15.16 inches and a steel head designed to retain its edge after repeated use. Additionally, a saw blade is magnetically attached inside the polyamide handle just in case.

Buy here.

United Cutlery M48 Tactical Hawk Tomahawk


There’s a reason this ‘hawk from United Cutlery is one of Knife Depot’s best-selling products: it can do just about anything you would ever need out of an axe, hatchet, machete or survival knife. It’s 15.75 inches long but weighs a mere 24 ounces, so it’s not burdensome when you’re carrying it around on the trail or while camping. Once it’s inside the nylon sheath, you’ll never want to be without the United Cutlery M48 Tactical Hawk by your side.

Buy here.


Timothy Martinez Jr. is the community director for Knife Depot and the editor of The Cutting Edge. If you have any questions or ideas for The Cutting Edge, you can contact him at
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  1. James from Canada

    August 12, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    Great article, though I always cringe at the though of the untrained using “tactical tomahawks” for anything. I’ve seen a few uneducated people with ugly scars for not know how to deal with the “spike” opposite the hatchet blade.

    Even though you don’t currently carry them on the website, you do have access to the brands, so I am sure you’ll be offering the Zippo 4-in-1 Woodsman and the Gerber Downrange Tomahawk in the near future. The Zippo Woodsman is the ultimate “camper axe”, featuring an suitable axe head, 15″ bow saw, tent stake puller, and decent mallet head.

    The Gerber Tomahawk is not quite so user-friendly, and in fact would need to have the axe head sharpened properly to make it a useful hatchet, but is in my opinion the best “survival tomahawk” on the market today, combining a hatchet head, mallet, and effective pry par in to one tool. Its not a fighter’s weapon like the tactical tomahawks are meant to be. It is an extraordinary tool that falls in to the same great category.

    • All great points, James. Thanks for adding your thoughts on these two. The Zippo and Gerber Tomahawk would definitely be somewhere on the list of best hatchets. We’ll look to carry them in the near future because, like you said, they are really extraordinary.

  2. The M48 and the SOG are indeed great tomahawks, but if you’re going to be tossing one around, better to go with a full tang hawk like the Sibert Comanche Tactical Tomahawk. A full tang is metal all the way down. Sure, the composite handles are tough, but eventually it WILL break. Replacable, but still a pain.

  3. Major_Northeast_City

    September 9, 2013 at 10:59 pm

    Once you own a Hawk made by RMJ, you’ll never look back.
    I own an RMJ ‘Jenny Wren’.

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