I had the opportunity to attend the 2012 Survival Expo in Las Vegas. The show as a whole was a bit of a letdown. There were five different beef jerky vendors and even a person selling sheets… wasn’t exactly what I am looking for at a survival expo. I did however see something that really caught my eye. I ran into a booth for Gear Up Center and saw the Crovel.
I actually got to speak to the creator of the Crovel at length and I was impressed. I have seen my fair share of entrenching tools and I have a couple in my cache, but nothing compares to this tool. It’s heavy, it’s sharp, it’s just all around badass. I watched a video of them using it to scale a tree, not something I could ever do but still pretty cool.
Then I got to test it out for myself, I got to hack away at a tree stump, and other than being a bit awkward at first (you are using a shovel as an axe) it made short work of the stump. Even after all that hacking and chopping from the previous days use, it was still razor sharp. So sharp that as I was talking to one of the employees, he backed into it and sliced his leg open.
This whole time I had been using the basic model that just had the shovel blade. He then took me over to a table with all of the other options for building your own crovel and even their big brother model, the Crovel Extreme. Looking at the stuff online is one thing but actually seeing it is amazing, I was like a kid in a candy store. Below are just a few features from the manufacturer:
The SUPER SPIKE: The revolutionary design allows users to insert either end of the SUPER SPIKE into the hollow handle of the Crovel Extreme and Crovel Tactical. Choose between the rounded / beveled cap-end for smashing, bashing, and crashing or the fiercely angled obelisk shaped SUPER SPIKE for poking, prodding, and puncturing! (Comes with the Crovel Tactical)
THE HAMMERHEAD: The Crovel Extreme’s hammerhead has also been upgraded to give a wider surface to the head allowing for easier use. (Comes with the Crovel Extreme)
THE CLAW: The Crovel Extreme’s crowbar claw has been upgraded include a woodworking chisel as well as a pry. (Comes with the Crovel Extreme)
They even have a slingshot and fishing attachment.
Normally I do a pro’s and cons section but this tool is just too awesome
I only have 3 things that I don’t like about it and the first is my personal preference.
The Crovel is long and heavy, if you were to be carrying it for a while you would have to strap it to the outside of your pack nothing too major.
The second downside is the price. At around $100 for the base model it is pretty pricey, but the fact that it is good quality steel and made in the U.S. offsets the price a good deal. Again have used quite a few entrenching tools and most of them are pretty lackluster when it comes to quality
My pet peeve is that this awesome blade is marred with having one of the most useless accessories that seems to be on every camping tool made… a bottle opener. I don’t know why but if everything else has a bottle opener why would you put one on this otherwise impeccable tool. I could go on and on about how awesome this tool is or you could just check out the video below. If you have the spare cash I recommend getting one of these bad boys