This brand, known by roofers and other tradesmen, is easy to forget. Not featured in photos of Amazon expeditions or video feeds from the International Space Station, Estwing quietly gets the job done. The Sportsman’s Axe is another example of common-sense construction of a well-conceived design. Most notable, the Shock Reduction Grip nearly eliminates vibration even when the axe connects with immovable objects (which is still not good for the blade). Forged in one-piece steel, Active Junky’s been using the longer-handled version for over five years in home improvement and campground settings. Sharpening Camper’s 4” blade takes time but the thicker-gauge steel bounces back from adversity while the poll (back of the head) is a driving force in the overall 16” tool. The sheath included is well matched to the axe.
Pros: Nearly indestructible. Affordable. Part of the everyday toolbox. No-brainer investment, made even better by pairing with other Estwing tools including hammers and the long-handled version of the Camper’s Axe.
Cons: Heavy. Unimpressive look reminiscent of an everyday hammer. Balance is good for most chores.
Tester Comments: "This is the “Rocky” of the entire test collection. There’s nothing delicate or extraneous with this camp axe. Definitely one to keep in the toolbox or drawer at home, take on trips and consider for paddling expeditions given its notched-up weight. Get a good sharpener as this one doesn’t respond to finer sharpening stones. Estwing is a brand for home workshop, travel or camping. I’m getting the longer-handled version for some construction work I need to do."
Key Attribute: Durability
Best for: All around use when extra weight is not a factor, ideal for first-time axe owners – solid gift choice along with a purchase for an extended road trip where constant resharpening is somewhat challenging.
Category: Utility Camp Axe
Overall Length: 16 inches
Blade Length: 4 inches
Handle Material: Nylon vinyl with shock reduction
Sheath Material: #9 blue nylon, included