In case you were wondering how to carry and attach an axe or a hatchet to a backpack, here you can find your answers.
You have read several books, taken a surviving course and you are on the right path for developing survival skills. You know what an ax or hatchet is used for and how to use it. Maybe you have learned how to sharpen an axe and have made yours razor sharp. You have been practicing in your backyard for months, you have the basic knowledge and now it is time to make the first big step – go to the wild.
You have been waiting for this moment for so long and now the wait is over. You are able to go camping and enjoy your time with your group of friends. However, there is something else you need to learn before your first camping.
C’mon, aren’t we finished with learning? Why can’t I just go to the woods and practice what I know?
The impatience is in the human nature but the will for trying new things could turn your survival from fun to tragedy.
You don’t want that to happen, so you need to ask yourself one crucial question.
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Where have you been using your axe/hatchet?
It seems funny, but this is very important. Did you used it just around your house, or maybe visited a relative to help them with the wood splitting?
My point is that you haven’t really experienced the meaning of the packing and carrying your tool. Going in the wild will put you on many tests, and you need to be ready for every one of them.
However, my intention isn’t to drag you back to your home, but help you learn from my experience.
Several years ago, I was in this same situation – practicing for weeks in my yard and one day, I felt like I was ready for hiking.
I found a group of hikers and decided to join them. We gathered, and just when we were about to go, one member of the group told me to stop.
He told me to pass him my hatchet, which I did. I didn’t wonder why he asked me such a silly question, I put my hatchet down from my shoulder and passed to him holding it with both hands.
He just stared at me for a couple of seconds, when the whole group just burst out laughing.
I was very confused and didn’t know what was that all for.
Later on, he gave me his advice, explained my mistakes, and carefully followed me all the time, like I was a little kid.
That wasn’t much comfort, but that day, I learned that those small things could cause troubles in the wild and that surviving is more than just trimming branches. The axe passing was a test I didn’t pass.
Before you grab your hatchet and go hiking, you need to learn these things:
- How to carry your axe or hatchet
- How to attach your axe or hatchet to a backpack
- How to pass the axe
- How to leave the axe when not in use
In this article, I will share with you my personal experience and create a full guide that will help you. Without any more hesitations, let’s dive in.
How to carry an axe or hatchet?
In most of the situations, you will want to keep your axe in hand. But even when you are not swinging with it, the axe is still a dangerous tool.
Considering that you are going camping, your blade is probably very sharp. There is nothing bad about it, as long as you are careful enough.
The blade can cut through clothes and injure you. In order to prevent that, you want to be sure that every moment when you are not using the axe or hatchet, the head will be covered by a sheath.
Looking for a new sheath? Check these out.
What sheath do you prefer? Post your favorites in the comments section.
While walking, hold the axe or the hatchet in a way that is pointing to the ground and the blade is away from you.
Do not think of throwing it over your shoulder, like guys in the movies do. Why not?
Mostly, because of safety. If you stumble, the chances of injury are higher if the axe is over your shoulder. So, carry it at your side, holding it just below the head, with the blade facing out.
If you stumble, throw the tool away from you, but be careful as you don’t want to throw it at somebody else.
How to pass an axe or hatchet?
You will need to take care of the passing as well. When you want to pass the axe, hold the handle near the knob with the head facing down. Make sure that the blade is pointed out, and your partner has a nice grip before you release it.
What should you do with your axe/hatchet when you are not using it?
If you are making a pause from chopping, or just want to sit and relax, never think of leaving the axe on the ground.
Accidents may happen, so you want to prevent them whenever that is possible. So, what can you do?
Lean the axe against a tree or stick it into a log. In both ways, the blade won’t hurt anyone and that is one worry less for you.
But what if you don’t plan to use it and you don’t want to carry it in your hand? Can you pack it?
How to attach the axe or hatchet to a backpack
Your backpack will be full of other equipment, so you need to plan the space for the axe as well.
Remember this – you want your axe to be easily accessible as unexpected situations may require an axe or hatchet, and you don’t want to open your backpack then and look for it.
You need to act fast, and in case the tool is not in your hand, you should be able to take it out very quickly.
So, what are your options?
This depends mostly on the backpack and your preferences. So, you can use the shovel pockets to put your axe/hatchet in or look for hip belts on the exterior side.
There is a specially designed Bushcraft Axe Belt Loop that you could also use to attach an axe or hatchet to your pack. You can check the current price of it here on Amazon.
Or, you can use a strap and make an axe holder on your own. However, take care of one thing, when you put the tool in, the backpack needs to be balanced.
Notice this – no matter what way you chose to carry the axe, never put the blade against you, for the same reason I mentioned above – in case you fall behind, the blade would seriously injury you.
How do you attach your tool? Do you use some of these options, or something different? Feel free to share your opinion.
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