Sometimes things tend to get out of hand and you’re left wishing if only you had prepared for the worst. Talking about preparedness, you need to think beyond the usual stuff.

Can you survive in the woods if the need arises? Just how fast can you create a bunker that your family can escape to if your entire neighborhood becomes unlivable?

If you can invest in the best survival shovels available, it’s possible to simplify some of the complex tasks that come with survivalist living. And we’d like to review some of the leading shovels available out there right now. 

Here you go!

Top Shovels For Survival in 2020

Product Name

Price

Rating


Pathway North

$$

SOG

$

AMES

$

Gerber Gorge

$

Gerber E-Tool

$$

Cold Steel

$

FiveJoy

$$

Schrade

$

Iunio

$$

Glock

$$

1. Pathway North

What makes the ET15 the ultimate survival shovel for different situations that may arise? For starters, it is a versatile tool that can perform a host of tasks.


You can use its stainless steel shovelhead for digging into the ground with relative ease. Flipping the head by 90-degrees gives you a gardening hoe that you may find useful for digging trenches.


Further, there is also the Ferro rod that you may find handy for starting fires instantly. 


That’s not all as the shovel features a 120db emergency screamer whistle that would enable you to call for help when you are in danger.


Other notable features include the stainless steel blade, a flat head screwdriver, a ruler, compass and a bottle opener.

Pros

  • Comes with a 100% money-back guarantee
  • Well-made
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • May hurt you too easily

2. SOG Folding Shovel

Another high-quality shovel that could enable you to perform a host of tasks comfortably is the SOG folding shovel.


Let’s start with the high-quality construction of high carbon steel with a hard-cased black finish for durability and sturdiness.


The handle quite is well-made also as it fits into your hands comfortably for a smooth digging operation.

Accompanying the shovel is a steel saw blade, with teeth, that you may find useful for cutting and slashing.


The shovel is lightweight and compact and, therefore, ideal for moving around with. Even better is that it remains a viable tool for heavy-duty tasks all the time.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Lightweight
  • Built to last

Cons

  • The pouch is not molle compatible

3. AMES

This is a military-grade shovel that is ideal for heavy-duty tasks and is built to last longer than other portable shovels in the market.


We liked the heavy-duty steel and aluminum construction that makes it ideal for digging in the harshest terrains that you may find yourself in.


The tool has a tri-fold design that collapses for enhanced portability and easy storage.


As required of a survival tool, the US GI shovel is versatile, and you could use it as an ice pick, a grappling hook and even a chair.

Pros

  • Durable
  • Versatile
  • Easy to carry and store

Cons

  • The saw blade is not sharp

4. Gerber Gorge

If you have a light camping trip coming up, the Gerber Gorge survival shovel would be a handy tool to have by your side. The main reason for this suitability is because you could use it as a hammer and therefore would be perfect for pounding in the tent stakes.


Other than that, it is foldable and therefore easy to carry around in the drawstring bag that it comes with. And if you want it to unfold to full size, all you have to do is press the button on the handle.


Let's also touch on the ergonomic handle with the rubberized grip, and this translates to ease of use since you can hold the tool for long periods without your hands tiring out.


So if you want a survival shovel without complicated features, the Gerber Gorge is here for you.

Pros

  • Lightweight and compact
  • Has an ergonomic handle for comfortable use
  • Comes with a drawstring bag for carrying it around

Cons

  • Not for heavy-duty tasks

5. Gerber E-Tool

Looking for something simple but would still get the job done? The Gerber E-tool would be a reasonable investment, especially if you are a hiker or camping junkie.


This is a folding spade that is made out of high-quality powder-coated carbon steel to make it sturdy and durable. This construction also makes it suited for use in different types of environment.


As for the blade, it has a serrated half to equip the spade with more digging power. Further, this blade has a shape that allows it to penetrate the ground with relative ease.


We also liked the nylon handle which is glass-filled and with an open design that makes it long-lasting plus you would have a firmer grip on the tool.


Lastly is the locking mechanism for keeping the spade open during use, and this keeps you safe.

Pros

  • Built to last
  • Has a safety feature
  • Foldable for easy transportation

Cons

  • Somewhat bulky

6. Cold Steel

If you know that you will be visiting a cold area such as an icy desert in the coming days, the Cold Steel survival shovel would be a reasonable tool to have as it can dig through the toughest surfaces.


First, the carbon steel is heat-treated to enhance its sturdiness. Then, the axe-like edges are sharp and could be sharpened even more for more effectiveness.


Let's also touch on the hardwood handle, which is quite strong plus is easy to remove and replace in case you need to equip it with a new one.


For portability, there is a simple belt loop to see you through.

Pros

  • Comes with a MOLLE compatible sheath
  • Durable
  • Has a sturdy hardwood handle

Cons

  • Edges need regular honing

7. FiveJoy

The FiveJoy folding shovel comes in a survival kit that includes a hammer, a ruler, bottle opener, fire starter, sharp axe blade, paracord, a fire starter and an emergency whistle.


All these combine to make the shovel a versatile tool as you can start a fire, split logs, scale fish, and even stitch wounds.


The shovel is constructed out of premium high carbon steel to give it an incredible lifespan. Further, the rust-resistant finish it has is crucial in protecting the shovel from corrosion.


As for the handle, it is non-slip and quick-dry to ensure that you have a firm grip as you use the tool.

There is also the unique locking structure that enables you to maintain your preferred angle during use.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Compact for easy storage for travel
  • Has a rust-resistant finish

Cons

  • The shovel head is a bit small

8. Schrade SCHSH1

If you know that you are likely to find yourself in a situation that would require scooping a lot of dirt at once, the Schrade shovel would be a reasonable pick. This is due to the telescoping handle with a sturdy T-grip which should give an easy time in digging trenches or digging your car wheels from the sand.


Other than that, this is a lightweight shovel that would not wear out your hands before you start on the task at hand.


As for the blade, it is made out of carbon steel to make it sturdy and durable. The sharpened head is also crucial in ensuring that the shovel penetrates the ground with maximum ease.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Long telescoping handle for easier use with minimum effort
  • Built to last

Cons

  • Not for heavy-duty tasks

9. Iunio

What makes the Iunio tool one of the top-rated survival shovels out there? Well, for starters, not only is ideal for some light digging and chopping, but you could also use it for self-defense purposes. 


Then, it is made out of high-quality materials, including steel and fiberglass, so that it serves you for a decent period into the future.


This is a versatile tool with a sharpened pointed end, one serrated edge and a concave one that you would find useful for chopping wood. 


On top of everything, the shovel comes with a sheath and a nylon belt pouch that makes the tool easy for carrying around.

Pros

  • Built to last
  • Could serve as a self-defense tool
  • Awesome edge-retention

Cons

  • The handle is too short

10. Glock Entrenching Tool

The last item on our list is from the Glock brand, which has a reputation for producing high-quality products. The entrenching tool is lightweight and compact, and you could subject it to a variety of uses.


We liked the fact that it has no rivets or welding to give it better endurance. Also worth mentioning is the folding blade that is lockable in four positions.


Another notable feature is the telescoping handle which is made out of high-grade impact-resistant polymer to add to its suitability for use.


Since you get two tools for the price of one, this survival shovel is the best value tool.

Pros

  • Sturdy construction
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Versatile

Cons

  • A bit too short

Buying Guide for a High-Quality Survival Shovel

There are countless options of survival shovels out there, including those that would easily disappoint you. Therefore, you need to pay special attention to certain factors as a way of narrowing down your search.

1. The Construction

The materials used in constructing the blade determine how long and effectively it is going to serve you. Let’s start with the blade whereby the best materials for sturdiness include carbon or stainless steel. Further, it should be coated to make it corrosion-resistant.

As for the handle, a metallic one would last for a decent period into the future. On top of that, a shovel without a hinge to connect the handle to the blade would be less prone to breaking apart or corrosion.

2. Presence of Extra Features

Besides digging, a survival shovel should be capable of performing other tasks, and the only way this would happen is if it possesses extra features.

For instance, some shovels have serrated teeth on one side of the shovel’s blade while you may find a saw on some handles, to give the tool some sawing ability.

You may also find a compass on a shovel while some double as self-defense tools.

However, be sure to check the price so that you do not overspend on an item just for the extra features. 

3. Ease of use

What would be the use of getting a survival handle that would only make life harder? A shovel with a longer handle makes things easier as you have less bending to do. An ergonomic handle with a firm grip also makes the shovel easier to operate.

4. Portability

The two necessary features for an ideal survival shovel are lightweight and compact. A foldable model easily folds into the perfect size that would fit into your bag so that you can carry it around.

The folding mechanism may either be two-piece or three-piece, with the latter being capable of folding into the smallest size.

Note that the materials used in the construction of the tool also affect its portability with a metal shovel being heavier than a plastic one.

5. Price

Always find a balance between the cost of the item and the value you would be getting for it.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

This section comprises of some of the queries that we faced in our research on survival shovels. The questions, followed by their response, should boost your knowledge on this topic.

How do I maintain my survival shovel?

You could maintain the longevity of your survival shovel by undertaking simple practices. These include wiping after use, checking for rust and corrosion, regular oiling, sharpening the edges and carrying it in the appropriate pouch.

What are some of the uses of a survival shovel? 

There are several tasks that you could use the shovel for. These tasks include building shelters, digging latrines, chopping wood, and even for self-defense. As you can see, the best shovel should be capable of performing several tasks to make your life easier.

Which materials would assure you that you are acquiring a durable product?

The common materials that boost the sturdiness of a shovel include high-carbon steel, aluminum and stainless steel. The use of these materials or a combination of them would ensure that your shovel is capable of standing the test of time.

Final Thoughts

Life as we know it is packed with unpredictability. Therefore, the only thing you could do is prepare for any situation that comes your way by having everything that you may need to get through. One of these items is a survival shovel which would make your life outdoors less complicated.

The product that stood out from the rest during our research is the Pathway North Survival Shovel. Besides the sturdy construction and the versatility that it offers, this shovel comes with a 100% money-back guarantee to make it a risk-free investment.

We hope that our article has equipped you with all the knowledge you need so that next time you go shopping for the appropriate tool, you would be in a better position to make an informed choice.