SOG Entrenching Tool (Shovel)

June 25, 2015

Written by: Michael Chang

The SOG Entrenching Tool (or for most people, “Shovel”) is portable, lightweight, and durable, making it a perfect tool for carrying on your outdoor adventures.

It’s not often that someone brings a shovel on an overnight camping trip but there have been many times that having such a tool would have been helpful. SOG has made such a compact and durable tool that, at a mere 695 grams, packing this portable shovel may just well be worth it.

The shovel appears to be very strong. We used it several times outdoors including in dirt, on a sandy beach, and amongst rocks, and had no issues with it. Even covered in sand, we were able to fold it back into its compact size, including turning the locking mechanism with ease. When digging up rocks and some solid ground, we felt like the shovel was strong for its size. There must be limitations to its strength but we didn’t feel like it was going to bend or break.

The unit folds at 2 points and fits neatly into a small, durable nylon bag (included), that has a strap to connect to your backpack or your belt. Turning a piece on the handle locks the shovel into place when it’s unfolded. The tool can also be locked so the shovel is at 90-degrees of the handle, which gives you use of a pick, useful for tearing apart wood for kindling.

SOG Entrenching Tool with its pick

The SOG Entrenching Tool locked at 90-degrees with its pick tool easily pulled apart some of the logs on the beach.

There is a saw blade on one side of the shovel but we were unable to figure out a usage for the saw. The teeth are not sharp or long enough to saw through rope, wood, or any reasonably strong material but maybe there’s a use for it that comes up when you don’t expect it to.

The only complaint about this tool is that in an attempt to keep it compact and portable, it actually felt a bit too small. However, a larger tool would mean a heavier tool, which might mean you decide to leave it at home instead of carrying the extra weight.

SOG Entrenching Tool in Sand

The SOG Entrenching Tool worked well in the sand, with no problems with the locking mechanism or folding it back into its compact form.

Details:

  • Blade Length: 4.75″ (12.1 cm)
  • Overall Length: 18.25″ (46.4cm)
  • Weight: 24.5oz (695 grams)
  • Finish: Hardcased Black
  • Blade Steel: Carbon Steel
  • Handle: Carbon Steel
  • Sheath: Ballistic Nylon

We purchased this for a mere $15 CAD at Mountain Equipment Co-op, which seamed like a deal.

Overall, we were very impressed with the SOG Entrenching Tool and felt like it’s something we will regularly be packing on our overnight adventures. We were looking for a shovel that folder into something portable and would be durable and this certainly met those conditions at a very good price.

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