The 11 Best Machetes for Camping and Survival (2021)

 The 11 Best Machetes for Camping and Survival (2021)

For serious campers and hikers, here is a guide on the best machetes for camping on the market today.

A machete for camping is a knife with a broad blade and overall length between 12 to 18 inches long. They are constructed for a variety of different uses and from a variety of blade materials, including stainless steel, carbon steel, and high carbon steel.

Some machetes are made for farmers. It can serve as a tool to cut sugarcane and for other agricultural purposes.

Others are designed for hunting, yard work, or even cutting wooden handles when making tools.

It is even the title of a movie starring Danny Trejo.

11 Best Camping Machetes & Survival Machetes

Machetes are also very useful when trying to set up the perfect camping site. When you need to cut wood for a fire or for clearing brush to set camp, I would recommend having one handy.

So here is a list of the best camping machetes that will serve you well in the wilderness.

Also, we often review or link to products and services we regularly use and think you might find helpful. To support us, use our affiliate links wherever possible, which means if you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Thanks for the support!

1 – Kershaw 18 Inch Machete

Kershaw is one of the most trusted brands in machetes. They make a lot of different kinds in a number of sizes including 10 inches, 14 inches, and 18 inches.

This 18-inch version, however, is the best machete for camping. 

Its blade is long enough to make it easy to cut through small trees and tree limbs for fire pit wood. It's also good for cutting through dense vegetation when hiking.

The blade itself is also powder-coated, which keeps the blade sharp and easy to maintain for a long time. The powder coat also gives it that cool, slick black look.

In addition, this is a full tang machete, which means that the unsharpened, back portion of the blade extends to the handle. This full tang blade ensures that the blade stays sturdy in use, and doesn’t bend at all when you whack something.

2 – Condor Tool & Knife Parang Machete

Another long blade, this one at 17 ½ inches is ideal for cutting through a lot of vegetation.

The term “Parang” originates from Indonesia and is a style known for long blades that can cut through wood. It features a hardwood handle for a fantastic grip and a quality leather sheath instead of a nylon sheath.

Like the Kershaw, it’s full-tang and powder coated.

3 – SOG Sogfari 18 inch Machete

This machete is a more affordable long blade option but is certainly no slouch. It even carries a lifetime warranty.

The interesting feature about the Sogfari is the dual blade. The front of the blade is normal with a black powder finish, and the back is actually a working saw blade. 

The teeth on the saw give you more options when looking to gather wood while camping. You can even use it to prepare meals!

Also, the handle has a synthetic rubber grip, which makes it easy to hang on to.

4 – Gerber Gator 18 Inch Machete

This is another option for a dual blade with a saw on the backside. If choosing between the Gerber or the SOGfari, choose between which design you prefer since they’re both high quality.

5 – Tramontina 18 Inch Machete With Hardwood Handle

One of the most affordable options is this Tramontina. It even looks like a sword! So this is a good option for you if you don’t like the black powder look and prefer the steel to shine like steel.

It has a hardwood handle, which makes for a good grip. However, if you’re using it for a long time consider taping your hands as the hardwood may lead to blisters.

6 – Schrade 13.3 inch Kukri Machete

Maybe you don’t want such a long blade, in which case this Schrade could be the one for you.

Slightly shorter with a 13.3-inch blade with a 12-inch sharp edge, this machete is also powder-coated for durability. 

One advantage to a shorter blade is the lighter weight. This one weighs less than one and a half pounds.

When hiking it will serve you well cutting bushes in your path. So this machete would help in particular when you find the perfect camping spot but need to clear a little bit of terrain to make it comfortable.

7 – Gerber Bear Grylls Parang Machete

Just about every survivalist has heard of Bear Grylls, and this is the survival machete that has his stamp of approval.

This is another quality and comfortable to use 13.5 inch machete. The added bonus is the design. 

In Bear Grylls fashion, this machete even includes land-to-air rescue instructions and pocket guides. I'd say that qualifies it as one of the best survival machetes!

8 – CRKT Halfachance Fixed Blade Machete

This is the best camping machete for those who prefer a shorter blade. This one is 12 inches long, 18 inches total including the handle.

The handle is plastic but provides exceptional grip.

It includes a velcro belt loop system to give you the option to dangle its sheath on your belt or keep it snug to the belt.

9 – Condor Tool & Knife 14 Inch Golok Machete

This blade is of the thicker variety for a shorter blade at 14 inches. Thicker blades mean they’re good for slicing heavier things, such as wood or even watermelon. 

At full tang and with a walnut handle it whacks very sturdily. It even comes with a quality leather sheath.

10 – KA-BAR 2-1249-9 Kukri Machete

This is the shortest blade on this list at 11.5 inches. It is also one of the thickest and toughest.

It can easily cut through weeds and is comfortable to use. I would recommend using it if you’re looking for something small that can get the job done.

11 – Fiskars 29 Inch Machete Axe

Why not end this list with the most unconventional? This machete not only features a long 18-inch blade but an axe on the end!

The axe is the best camping machete if you’re looking to chop a lot of wood. 

Also, at the point where the blade turns into an axe, there’s a curve that works especially well pull-cutting. 

Pull-cutting is helpful when you want to clear something that is a bit of a moving target, like vines.

I would recommend this for someone looking for versatility.

Which Machetes for Camping Do You Use?

What is your favorite blade material: stainless steel blade, carbon steel blade, or high carbon steel blade? Let us know in the comments!

The 11 Best Machetes for Camping and Survival (2021) 1
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The 11 Best Machetes for Camping and Survival (2021)

Mike Wendland

Mike Wendland is a veteran journalist who, with his wife, Jennifer, travels North America in a small motorhome, blogging about the people, places, joys and adventure of RV life on the road at RVLifestyle.com. He and Jennifer also host the weekly RV Podcast and do twice-weekly videos on the YouTube RV Lifestyle Channel. They have written 10 books on RV travel.

14 Comments

  • Machetes have been outlawed in some States due to horrific crimes committed by Central American gangs such as Mara Savartutha MS-13. I think Virginia is one of those states.

    • I’m in Virginia and I’ve not seen any legislation like this. You can buy them in most any hardware store or Walmart.

  • Bad timing and taste. A machete isn’t necessary for camping. We’re not in the jungle. The world is full of crazies under their imagined pressures and they don’t need reminders on how to be dangerous. Colorado yesterday and you’re putting this up to fill your blog. No good. Please think in terms in the what our country is going through.

    On that note your pleasant blogs on the joys of RV camping put some real inconsiderate newbies in RVs that ran amuck and a couple even graffitied ancient and natural sites and also others spread disease as well – evident by the parks dump station tests. Looking back that was not good ideas to push on desperate cabin fevered folks – mostly the young crowd.
    Because of the RV BOOM, people who Rv before this past year are faced with unavailability due to too many people seeking to escape their homes. We stayed home as responsible adults should have. Seems the majority of our fellow Americans can’t sit still or follow common sense guidelines to help everyone else. I know it’s bad form but I think those who laugh in the face of illness and death deserve to fall victim to it. We’re tired of all the ignorance and lack of conscience surrounding us.

    • You are a very negative person

    • Wow. I’d say Barb needs to self-isolate some more. RV’s for me but not for thee. Who knew the work “machete” could indict all new RV’rs?

    • Barb, take a chill pill. If you want to see destruction, disease and filth – take a look at what is crossing our Southern border. Perhaps we all need machetes. I found the article informative and helpful as I am currently in the market for a machete. Have a nice day.

  • The best machete-type tool is a “Woodman’s Pal”. It’s better balanced and safer and can be used to cut in two ways. Both by swinging at small trees and pulling at vines.

    Unfortunately the original manufacturer closed and it’s now made by another company that’s charging 2 or 3 times what I paid for mine 20 years ago: $175. I consider it at least twice as useful as a traditional machete.

    https://www.woodmanspal.com/shop/

    • Nice, I’ll check this one out.

  • Where are the photos? It sure would be nice to see what these look like without having to search.

    Also, would not just a nice hatchet do the job?

    Up to each of us, I guess.

  • Mike & Jennifer thanx for the information. Hope to see u on the road 😎

  • These are great tools for the camper. They can split firewood and cut limbs that might be hanging I to the camp site. It is utterly ignorant to think the use of such a tool would incite violence. If I wanted to hurt someone I could do more harm with a golf club or a baseball bat. I have the Gerber model and I use it often. The saw blade makes it a multipurpose tool.

  • There was a safety recall of the Bear Grylls machete in 2012.

    https://www.cpsc.gov/Recalls/2012/gerber-recalls-machetes-due-to-laceration-hazard

  • Are any of them made in USA?

  • Good article; I prefer a machete with a high carbon steel blade. Easy to sharpen and holds an edge better than stainless steel. As a side note, a tool is a tool is a tool!

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