Essential Survival Tools

Our favorite stuff from the past seven days

Sep 16, 2016
Outside Magazine

   Photo: Joel Bear Studios LLC

We cover lots of gear every week. We feature the coolest stuff in this weekly column, every Friday. The theme this week: survival. 

Exotac Nanostriker Fire Starter ($26)

  Photo: Exotac

Don't get caught in the woods without a fire starter. The Nanostriker clips onto a key ring and the replaceable ferrocerium rod works when wet. Just in case, the aluminum case is waterproof when sealed. 

Buy Now

Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight/Watertight .5 ($15)

  Photo: Adventure Medical Kits

You could make or own first aid kit. Or you could buy the pre-well-stocked Adventure Medical Kit. It packs down to the size of your hand and weighs only 3.9 ounces, but it includes helpful tools like safety pins, antihistamine, and butterfly bandages.

Buy Now

Klax Axe Head ($180)

  Photo: Klax

Available in three models, these axe heads have a knife blade, gut hook, hex wrenches, bottle opener, and a ruler built in. The proprietary clamping system makes it a easy to attach to a hiking pole or broken tree branch.

Buy Now

The Pocket Shot ($25)

  Photo: The Pocket Shot

While it may sound like a toy, the Pocket Shot will launch a steel BB 350 feet per second, making it an effective hunting and defense weapon. Made of polycarbonate and latex, it’s the puck sized tool is small enough to fit in your pocket. An additional attachment allows it to shoot arrows.

Buy Now

Ka-Bar Tactical Spork ($7)

  Photo: Ka-Bar

In survival situations, gear that has multiple functions could save your life. Made from food safe Grilamid, the six-inch Tactical Spork has a comfortable handle and a deep spoon end. Pull sharply on the handle to release the 2.5 inch, serrated blade.  

Buy Now

Grayl Ultralight Water Bottle ($60)

  Photo: Grayl

The Ultralight bottle is one of the simplest and most compact water purifiers on the market. Just fill the 16-ounce bottle from any stream or lake and press down. In less than 15 seconds, the water will be filtered and you can drink straight from the bottle. The replaceable carbon filter lasts for about 300 uses or 40 gallons of water. 

Buy Now

Goal Zero Nomad 7 Plus Solar Panel ($100)

  Photo: Goal Zero

Plug your phone or GPS directly into the Nomad 7 Plus to charge from anywhere in the backcountry. Easy-to-read LED indicators provide feedback on panel-to-sun placement to you know exactly where to place the device to maximize charging. 

Buy Now

National Geographic Printable PDF Topo Maps (Free)

  Photo: National Geographic

National Geographic recently released their topographic quads for free. By zooming into the map on their website, you can quickly find and print a 7.5-minute topo for any location in the U.S. 

Get Now

Petzl Reactik+ Headlamp ($110)

  Photo: Petzl

The 300-lumen Reactik+ uses reactive technology to adjust brightness based on the conditions: if you’re looking at a map, the light will soften. If you’re scanning the horizon, the light will narrow and intensify. The MyPetzl Light mobile app allows you to check the headlamp's battery life on your phone and adjust the beam for different activities like trail running, climbing, and backpacking. 

Buy Now

Filed To: Gear Guy

More at Outside

Elsewhere on the Web

Not Now

Need a Gear Fix?

Open email. Get latest gear. Repeat.

Thank you!