Top 11 Best Survival Shovels –Choose The Right Carry-on Tool

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We’ve selected the 11 best survival shovels for your reference.

The shovel is considered to be one of the oldest tools of mankind. Before it helped our ancestors build their homes, and it still helps us how to survive. Many camping enthusiasts hold it up as an excellent multi-purpose tool, even more than a dagger. It can be used anywhere for building a house, digging a hole, camping or even hiking.

Best Survival Shovels

It’s certainly a must-have tool for survival enthusiasts! Imagine if you don’t have any weapons, a shovel can help you survive in danger. How to choose a suitable shovel may be a daunting task. Therefore, we have tried for a long time to select the 11 shovels with high-cost performance, comprehensively evaluated each product, and made suggestions that can let you find the best shovel for you.

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Best Military Shovel List

  1. Zune Lotoo Survival Camping Shovel ($209.99)
  2. Iunio Folding Survival Shovel ($35.85)
  3. REDCAMP Military Folding Shovel ($15.99)
  4. WU FANG Multi Tool Shovel ($24.99)
  5. Sahara Sailor Tactical Shovel ($25.99)
  6. OKOOLCAMP Survival Camping Shovel ($39.99)
  7. Tentlab Deuce Backcountry Trowel ($18.95)
  8. Rhino USA Folding Shovel ($22.99)
  9. UST U-Dig-It Folding Shovel ($10.82)
  10. Sea to Summit Nylon 66 Pocket Trowel ($28.99)
  11. GSI Outdoors Cathole Trowel ($3.49)

1. Zune Lotoo Survival Camping Shovel

Zune Lotoo Survival Camping Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – Zune Lotoo Survival Camping Shovel
  • Price: $209.99
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Camping, outdoor survival.
  • What we like about it: Unbreakable material and six shovel head angles.
  • What we don’t like about it: It’s very expensive and not accessible to everyone.

This is our top pick for the best shovel we can recommend for you. When you see it, you will easily understand why. The high strength and very durable front end made of high carbon steel make it incredibly sharp. A durable joint, it can make the turning point less prone to damage as well. You know this is the weak point of most collapsible shovels. And it comes with a lifetime warranty to show that this shovel is “indestructible”. I’m glad they have this level of confidence in their shovels.

The price is very expensive and this shovel is much more expensive than other options. However, I have to tell you that it is still worth it. If you are willing to pay more for a more advanced shovel, then it will be very suitable. Most importantly, this is a very good quality shovel that is very durable in the field. No one wants to use a shovel that is not durable, which I think is very dangerous for wilderness survival. So if it’s me, I’d rather buy a durable shovel that will last a lifetime than ten “disposable shovels”.

2. Iunio Folding Survival Shovel

Iunio Folding Survival Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – Iunio Folding Survival Shovel
  • Price: $35.85
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Camping, outdoor survival.
  • What we like about it: A multifunctional tool made of carbon steel with 10 tools added.
  • What we don’t like about it: It’s very cumbersome to install and remove.

The abundance of tools makes me think it can be called more than just a spatula. If you need something durable and affordable for the public, I suggest you take a look at this product. Its total length is 35 inches, designed for camping, hiking, or wilderness survival. The non-slip and stable handle makes it easy for me to use it without accidental dislodgement, and the length makes it very handy. If you use it to dig, most collapsible shovels would require you to crouch down, but the spliced design allows you to easily stand and destroy the land.

It’s not a tactical tool in the true sense of the word, and mounting and dismounting multifunctional components can be so complicated that you can’t convert and apply these tools quickly enough. As far as an affordable folding shovel goes, this is the best folding shovel for emergencies. It’s compact and sturdy, and the wide range of accessories makes it rich with more features. In addition, the price is an acceptable setup for most budget users.

3. REDCAMP Military Folding Shovel

REDCAMP Military Folding Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – REDCAMP Military Folding Shovel
  • Price: $15.99
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Backpacking or survival.
  • What we like about it: The design is simple to use and very lightweight for backpacking.
  • What we don’t like about it: The shovel head section is slim and not suitable for excessively hard tasks.

The form of the military shovel is the shape I like, it is simple but not simple. It functions as both a pick, saw and shovel, so you can choose based on your use scenario. The highly compact design allows me to easily fit it into my hiking bag, measuring 21.3 inches in length and weighing just 2.61 pounds. It doesn’t take up too much space in my pack, and I can even hang it externally on the surface of my backpack.

The shovel head section is thinner, so that also makes it more prone to denting, bending, and cracking than others. But the thinner shovel head is great for breaking through terrain and making your trips faster. And when you consider how cheap it is, as I did, nothing else is too much of a problem. For less than $20, you get a versatile tool that can help you in most survival scenarios.

4. WU FANG Multi Tool Shovel

WU FANG Multi Tool Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – WU FANG Multi Tool Shovel
  • Price: $24.99
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Outdoor camping or survival.
  • What we like about it: The oxide coating is very resistant to corrosion and also makes the whole thing harder.
  • What we don’t like about it: The handle is not very durable.

The feature that sets this folding spatula apart from others for me is probably its oxidation coating. It effectively prevents the shovel from rusting over time and increases corrosion resistance. The shovel head itself is also very hard, breaking the soil quickly without causing damage, and the blade is equally sharp. If you don’t want to bend over while shoveling, it can be attached up to 31.5 inches in length.

But the handle is not durable, hard and non-slip, and easy to crack. But after my shovel’s handle cracked and broke, I replaced its original handle with a strap from a badminton handle at home and the shovel worked great. Overall, this is a multi-purpose shovel that I find very durable, and the accessories work very well for the other options on the list. And, the shovel itself is sharp and long enough to prevent you from being very efficient at digging.

5. Sahara Sailor Tactical Shovel

Sahara Sailor Tactical Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – Sahara Sailor Tactical Shovel
  • Price: $25.99
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Tactical, camping
  • What we like about it: Military-grade carbon steel, and multifunctional tools.
  • What we don’t like about it: The loose threads make people complain.

An expensive shovel can be very feature-rich, it will be compact, durable, versatile, powerful, and long-lasting. This shovel is all of those things I’ve described and more, and at a very unexpected price. Made of military-grade carbon steel combined with an anodized aluminum handle for durability while ensuring light weight for increased portability. A sharp blade on the side allows for easy chopping.

One complaint would be that the threads on the handle tend to wear out. If you change the tool head frequently, it will start to wobble when mounted. In reality, these problems are nothing compared to everything it has to offer. It is the best tactical shovel because it comes with a lot of useful tools. Durable and powerful and comes with a lifetime warranty that protects you from almost anything that could go wrong.

6. OKOOLCAMP Survival Camping Shovel

OKOOLCAMP Survival Camping Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – OKOOLCAMP Survival Camping Shovel
  • Price: $39.99
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Road-trips
  • What we like about it: Durable materials, versatility, and a three-year warranty.
  • What we don’t like about it: It’s heavy and not suitable for backpacking.

The OKOOLCAMP camping shovel is in my opinion the best tool for camping, perfect for road-trips, RV camping, road trips, and as a tool for campground use. It is designed to be larger than most portable tool shovels and can easily dig holes and remove snow blocks. In addition, the many other features make it a great choice for portable use.

The disadvantages are also obvious, very bulky and not suitable for those backpacking people. If you want to choose a shovel that is suitable for backpacking, take a look at the recommendations below. But with durable materials and a wealth of features, it’s hard for those who travel by car not to swoon over it. Trust your trunk to have plenty of room for this little thing.

7. Tentlab Deuce Backcountry Trowel

Tentlab Deuce Backcountry Trowel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – Tentlab Deuce Backcountry Trowel
  • Price: $18.95
  • Folded: No
  • Usage Scenarios: Backpack hiking.
  • What we like about it: Lightweight, durable materials.
  • What we don’t like about it: It’s not very ergonomic.

The lightweight material is perfect for being placed somewhere in your backpack. Available in three sizes, varying in length, and designed to penetrate the densest of soils. Although the aluminum material is very thin, it remains very durable and can easily penetrate the soil, and can be used for digging on both sides.

However, its shape is too light and integrated, which may not be so comfortable when holding it. You may need some time to get used to its grip, so you need to read the manual carefully before using it to facilitate its use. But the best thing is that it seems to disappear as if it weighs almost nothing after being put into the bag. But you won’t overlook it, and the gorgeous colors can be easily found in a backpack.

8. Rhino USA Folding Shovel

Rhino USA Folding Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – Rhino USA Folding Shovel
  • Price: $22.99
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Road-trips
  • What we like about it: It’s affordable, and portable and the powder coating is very durable.
  • What we don’t like about it: It’s not the right weight for backpacking.

This is a tried and true folding shovel for outdoor camping and it’s well worth the money. Rhino has some great shovel options, but the compact design of their folding shovel is for people like me who don’t like big, complicated designs. The shovel has a serrated edge that allows me to easily saw through branches for a fire, and the pick on the back when flipped 90° allows me to break up rocks with ease. There’s also powder-coated steel to ensure durability and lasting quality.

Although it is simple and can be easily folded, it still has a large weight and is not suitable for backpacking. Rhino is committed to customer satisfaction and produces quality products. They offer a lifetime warranty on their shovels and can respond quickly to customer inquiries. So if you are looking for a folding shovel to keep in your camping kit or on a car trip, it will be the top choice.

9. UST U-Dig-It Folding Shovel

UST U-Dig-It Folding Shovel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – UST U-Dig-It Folding Shovel
  • Price: $10.82
  • Fold: Yes
  • Usage Scenarios: Backpack camping
  • What we like about it: Compact and portable, ergonomic.
  • What we don’t like about it :/

This is an affordable and powerful little durable shovel that is perfect for beginners and very experienced backpackers. Sometimes a simple design is what people need most, and this product is my first choice. And it’s not simple, either. I’d recommend it to any backpacker who wants to use a shovel as a backup tool. The stainless steel makes it a durable product that works well even on solid ground. The handle is slim but very comfortable to hold, and I felt the two metal rods act as a cushion because of the slight compression.

It’s slow to dig up because the shape is too small, so this may reduce your efficiency. But if you consider how small and portable it is, I think it’s still well worth fitting into your hiking backpack. It’s a great choice and when you’re talking about overall value, this product is hard to beat.

10. Sea to Summit Nylon 66 Pocket Trowel

Sea to Summit Nylon 66 Pocket Trowel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – Sea to Summit Nylon 66 Pocket Trowel
  • Price: $28.99
  • Folding: Shrinkage
  • Usage Scenarios: Backpack hiking
  • What we like about it: Affordable and unique design.
  • What we don’t like about it: No jagged design.

The Sea to Summit Nylon 66 Pocket Trowel is a nice little spatula for digging small holes with the ability to fold, retract and store toilet paper. Weighing in at just 3oz. makes me feel like I’m carrying a spoon in my pocket. The comfortably rounded grip when fully extended provides a perfect grip. A storage box exists in the hollow handle to keep small items like batteries out of the way.

There are no serrations on the blade, which means you can’t use it for cutting and other operations. It’s just a shovel, and it’s not too strong. So if you’re sure you’re involved in a camping trip that requires frequent use of a shovel, try another piece of professional equipment. But if you just need a simple backup tool, bring it along!

11. Coghlan’s Backpacker’s Trowel

Coghlan's Backpacker's Trowel
Top 11 Best Survival Shovels – Coghlan’s Backpacker’s Trowel
  • Price: $3.49
  • Folded: No
  • Usage Scenarios: Backpack camping
  • What we like about it: Simple and affordable design and useful features.
  • What we don’t like about it: The dirt on the blade is not easily removed.

I’ve been using Coghlan’s Backpacker’s Trowel for over a decade, so it’s dug hundreds of small holes. It may look dirty because the edges of the blade stain easily, but it’s still in perfectly usable condition. This 10-inch trowel is made from tough, durable recycled food and beverage containers and has a thick handle for a firm grip. It is available in a variety of colors, so you can purchase your favorite color.

The dirt on the blade is not easy to be removed, and the blade very easy to causes scratches when used. And it leaves dirt inside that is difficult to clean. If you don’t care about that, it can easily be used. In my opinion, Coghlan’s Backpacker’s Trowel is a simple, affordable, and lightweight option for your digging needs.

How to choose the most suitable survival shovel?

The best camping shovel is one that is easy to use and in the right condition. Many survival shovels will be more complicated than many campers need, but cheap plastic shovels will break very easily and be difficult to use further. Before choosing a camping shovel that is right for you, I think you should first read the following considerations.

  • Intended Use
  • Materials
  1. Steel
  2. Aluminum
  3. Titanium
  • Portability
  • Versatility


Intended Use

When buying any camping equipment, I think you need to ask yourself this question first. What am I going to buy it for? You must be doing it for one important purpose: digging. Sorry, I seem to have talked nonsense. But multiple questions can help you narrow your scope further.

For example, will you be using it for camping, car travel, or backpacking? What kind of terrain will you be digging in, is it specifically for digging in the snow, or do you just need to dig a small hole when camping?

Best Survival Shovels

These questions can help you determine the best specifications for you, and then you can move on to use other questions to determine your preferences. Examples include material, size, weight, and durability.


To find the best camping shovel, the material is critical. Many low-cost and lightweight shovels are made of plastic, but they are not going to be the most durable or practical. If you only use them a few times a year, and strictly for digging those small holes, then these shovels will do the job well enough.

Most of the camping shovels on our list will be made of metal or plastic. The metals typically used to make camping shovels include the following.


Including stainless steel, high-carbon steel, and chromium-molybdenum steel, this material is one of the most durable materials used for camping shovels. Stainless steel is rust and scratch resistant. Carbon steel has excellent tensile strength. Manganese steel is durable, impact resistant, and more generally resistant to wear and tear.


Aluminum is a much lighter material than steel and is rust-resistant. It is often used for backpacking shovels because of its lightweight. They are used for simple digging tasks as well as being stuffed into packs early on. They are up to the task of simple digging, using these shovels is not as durable as some tactical shovels.


Titanium is an expensive and very durable shovel material, and if you are willing to pay a premium for it, titanium can work very well for you. Its only drawback is that it is also very expensive.

Some shovels may use a combination of these types of metals to make up the handle as well as the front end. Usually, if the bucket is made of metal, that means it will be more durable, but some manufacturers may try to reduce weight by replacing other parts with lighter materials. While this may indeed reduce weight, it is usually not very durable.


Camping shovels are supposed to be portable, but that can mean different things to different people. The portability of the shovel will have a direct correlation to the intended use, so if you are looking for a shovel for traveling through the bush, it will be different from an ultralight backpacking shovel or a collapsible shovel for road-trips.

Best Survival Shovels

The overall design of the shovel and the materials used will also affect portability, size, and weight. Many backpacking shovels weigh less than an ounce. while more tactical or standard shovels will be larger and heavier, making them very cumbersome to carry.


What features do you need for the shovel you want? Do you need a professional digging tool? Or do you need a snow shovel that is light enough to carry? Once again, shovel versatility is tied to intended use, and if you’re not sure what scenario to use a shovel in because you’re just starting outdoor recreation, it may be beneficial to get a more versatile shovel. You can better adapt to life without the need for multiple shovel designs.

If you are still not sure which shovel is more suitable for you to use, you can also consider starting with the one you have. A simple spade can do a lot, even if it’s not multifunctional, not collapsible, and looks like a spade for planting flowers in the garden, but once you get started, you can see that your garden spade is also capable of doing a good job.

Multi-functional shovels can be folded and feature-rich, digging, hammering, cutting, and even ignition functions. But if these are not what you need, then be sure to buy a simple shovel. A standard collapsible shovel can handle most basic camping activities, but as mentioned earlier, determining the right shovel design for your needs will be much easier.


In this review, we have found a variety of materials for you to vary in quality and price. A camping shovel that works for you can make the process of camping more hassle-free and give you extra fun. For this reason, we found the best eleven camping shovels as of 2023, whether from the use, price, or product material, there is always a suitable you.

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