Best Backpacking saw

Best Backpacking Saw: Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw

Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw, 7-1/2 -Inch Blade, 7 TPI

The Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw may be the best straight edge saw to take the next time you go backpacking. It folds down and locks in place with ease, and with it weighing less than 6oz., you may even forget you’re carrying it around.

The saw is easy to use and offers a surprising amount of power considering its small size. You can clear a trail or use it for various situations at the campsite. Regardless, the blade holds its edge well and offers smooth cutting whether in line or flush and all while you keep a stable, comfortable grip on the non-slip, rubberized handle.

Best Backpacking Folding Saws Reviews

When backpacking, perhaps you encounter a trail in desperate need of maintenance. Or you need to get some limbs out of your way while setting up camp, require them to start a fire, or want to build some shelter. No matter your needs, a bushcraft saw can handle the job for you.

They’re generally compact, so they pack well, and they’re sharp enough to handle light to medium-duty work. If you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, check out our reviews later on to weigh the pros and cons of six top-selling saws. In the meantime, read through our guide below to understand more about these saws.

Choosing a Backpacking Saw – What You Should Know

camping folding saw cutting trunk

Finding the right saw for your backpacking experience isn’t as simple as picking up just any saw. You need something that’s light in weight, safe, and easy to use. To learn more about what to look for, simply read on.

When kitting out your tool box for your next trip you may also want to consider:

  • If collecting firewood is on the cards, then taking along a sturdy camp axe can be of great help.
  • For all those little jobs, a survival multi tool is a good choice to get them done easily without taking up a lot of space.
  • Keeping clean is a lot easier with a lightweight and fast drying camp towel.
  • There were several contenders for the top prize of “Best Camping Knife” – find out which one came out on top in our in-depth review.

Types of Backpacking Saws

There isn’t just one single type of backpacking saw. There are three main ones, and each one has an area they excel at.


Recognizing these saws is as simple as looking at the design. They get their namesake for being shaped almost like a bow. However, you may not find too many of these with backpacking saws as they tend to be heavier. They do offer greater strength, however, so they may be best if you know you’ll encounter a difficult cutting or pruning job.


A common saw for backpacking, folding saws usually have double rows of teeth and are multipurpose tools. Rather than just cutting, you can trim with these and do other jobs around the campsite if needed. They are far easier to store compared to bow saws since, as their name implies, they fold down for packing purposes.


So, a pocket saw is precisely as it sounds: a pocket-sized tool that’s compact enough to fit into your pack or your pocket. They may be the easiest of all to store, so if you genuinely want to pack light, this may be your go-to choice. With their aggressive teeth, it can complete various jobs. They aren’t that great at cutting branches down due to their awkward angle.

Backpacking Saws Buying Guide

Now that you have an idea of the various types of backpacking saws, we can explore essential aspects to look for when choosing a specific saw.

bushcraft saw on tree stump


Before you choose any saw, take a look at your bag. You want to ensure it’ll fit, so compare the space reserved in your bag to the length of the saw in question.

With that said, it also pays to have some idea what you’ll be using the saw for. If you know you’re cutting thicker wood, a saw longer than the wood’s diameter is a must if you want to get the job done fast.


Likewise, with every piece of gear, you’ll put in your bag, weight is a factor you can never forget. Saws of various types come in different sizes and weight ranges. For easy carrying and better maneuvering, you don’t want something that weighs too much to the point it’s hard to use.

Blade Material

The majority of collapsibble saws for backpacking purposes are made with steel. Admittedly, steel can rust, but many are coated to reduce the chance of such things from happening. Those that have higher carbon can even maintain its sharpness better.

Blade Edge

Survival saws either have a curved edge or a straight edge. For those of you just starting, a curved saw may be better up your alley. They usually have an ergonomic grip and design so that you can hold onto it more naturally. Also, they’re best for light duty work when it comes to managing thinner branches.

As for straight edges, they offer a bit more sturdiness, so they can be useful when handling larger, longer projects. If you know you’ll run into thick logs; it may be better to aim for straight edged saws.

Backpacking Saw Maintenance

Even if you have the best backpacking saw, you can’t claim much if you fail to maintain it properly. Maintenance boils down to two main things: sharpening and cleaning.

For those who have used cutting tools before, this may seem like a given. However, there are still some beginners out there who could benefit from understanding that a sharp cutting tool is one that’s easier to use and less likely to break or jam. If you don’t know how to sharpen your saw, numerous walkthroughs and videos can aid you.

If you want to keep your blade lasting longer and holding its sharpness, you have to stay up on cleaning it. Some are designed with special material or coatings that prevent the likes of sticky resin from latching on so that you can wipe the saw down. However, keep an eye on the smaller razor sharp teeth as wood chips may become stuck in between them.

Using a Camping Saw Safely

backpacking saw in wood

Like all cutting tools, safety is something that should be at the forefront of your mind at all times. When using one of these saws, it does help to wear gloves, more so if the handle merely is metal, which may be slippery. If the saw has a molded, rubberized grip, then that’s more useful to help you maintain a stable hold.

Your safety, health and hygiene are paramount out on the trail:

Also, consider the chance of a tree limb falling, especially if you’re using a chain to cut something higher up. Always be certain no one’s nearby and remember to remove yourself from the occasion the moment you see that branch coming down least you want a beautiful, painful story to share with your friends.

Top 6 Best Backpacking Saws

Best Backpacking Saw: Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw

Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw, 7-1/2 -Inch Blade, 7 TPI

If you have concerns about rust ruining your camping saw, the Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw can reduce those worries as it is specially coated to maintain its life. This coating also provides the blade with lower friction. As for the blade, it’s a straight edge that does best at handling smaller jobs.

There are good safety features as well. For one thing, the plastic handle along with a leather strap. Also, this camping hand saw utilizes safety lock-in and lock-out, which can be especially useful if you have small children around. There’s a chance that the blade can struggle to lock back into the handle as it isn’t always aligned though.


  • Does a good job holding an edge over time
  • Offers consistent and fast cutting
  • Lightweight and easy to use


  • Blade doesn’t always lock easily into the handle

Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw is known well for how easy it is to hold and use, in addition to offering much-needed safety features in its locking system.

Silky Folding Landscaping Hand Saw

Silky Saw 342-13 - Pocketboy 130mm Hand Saw (Fine Teeth)

One of the best straight edge saws for cutting wood fast during your backpacking trip is the Silky Folding Landscaping Hand Saw. In spite of its small size, it can handle a lot of work in a small amount of time. Something to keep in mind so that the blade doesn’t bend is that this should be used in a pull stroke. Also, with two different locking positions, you can use it for in line or flush cutting.

So that you always maintain a grip even in wet conditions, the portable hand saw features a rubberized, non-slip handle. The compact and lightweight tool can fold down and fit into your pocket if need-be, but even in your pack, it shouldn’t take up much space. For the sake of maintenance, some particles may get trapped between the razor sharp teeth, but it generally resists resin to wipe clean.


  • Sturdy steel frame construction adds longevity
  • Compact enough to fit as well in your pocket as it can in a backpack
  • Powerful cutting to handle small wood easily


  • Due to teeth design, they can be difficult to clean out thoroughly

Silky Folding Landscaping Hand Saw is well-appreciated for its compact, lightweight, foldable design and cutting power to handle various jobs.

Runner-Up: Gerber Freescape Camp Saw

Gerber Freescape Camp Saw [31-002820]

The Gerber Freescape Folding Camp Saw is an easy tool to take backpacking as it can fold down flat without removing any parts. When it’s folded, it’s also protected, so the blade maintains its quality, and you don’t run the risk of injuring yourself, others, or the rest of your gear.

Due to the size of the teeth as well as how few of them there are, this isn’t the saw for handling jobs fast like you can with the Silky Folding Landscaping Hand Saw. Even so, it’s comfortable if you have to use it for long. It features a rubber overmold grip, which you may also appreciate if conditions are rainy or sweaty. Also, you can handle medium-sized logs with this as it uses the entire length of the blade to cut.


  • Can handle small to medium-sized logs
  • Comfortable to hold for an extended period
  • Folds up compact for easier packing


  • Could benefit with more teeth to speed up the cutting process

Gerber Freescape Camp Saw is a top choice if you need something to handle larger diameters of wood without losing your grip.

Best Folding Saw: Corona Razor Tooth Folding Saw

Corona 7 Inch RS 7245 Razor Tooth Folding Saw, 7-Inch Curved Blade, Steel

With a curved design, the Corona Razor Tooth Folding Saw offers cleaner, faster cuts. The triple-ground, impulse-hardened teeth help you to remove 3x more material with each cut. So that you maintain your hold, this uses a co-molded handle that’s ergonomically designed and aided with a pistol grip.

This keeps sharp long thanks to the high carbon count in the steel. To keep you and others free from injury, it’s easy and quick to latch. Do keep in mind that due to its curved nature, all of the teeth aren’t hidden when folded like other folding camp saws such as the Bahco 396-LAP Laplander Folding Saw.


  • Minimum bulk makes it easier to pack and use
  • Safe enough for users of various ages to manage
  • Provides you with a good level of control


  • Doesn’t hide all the teeth when folded

Corona Razor Tooth is one of the best folding saw for backpacking, as it is one of the easiest to use, has a powerful curved saw that offers excellent control and an ergonomic, secure grip.

Best Budget Backpacking Saw: Sportsman Pocket Chainsaw

Sportsman Pocket Chainsaw 36 Inch Long Chain & FREE Fire Starter Best Compact Folding Hand Saw Tool for Survival Gear, Camping, Hunting, Tree Cutting or Emergency Kit. Replaces Your Pruning & Pole Saw

If you aren’t able to load up a bulkier saw, then the Sportsman Pocket Chainsaw will save you on space as the 36″ foldable chainsaw can collapse compact enough to fit into your pocket. For cutting power, the razor-sharp blades can manage three sides of a limb at the same time. Though it may take some effort with one person, it can go by incredibly fast with two people.

Also, with the length of the chain, it can handle branches that are a bit higher up. This can not only save you on time, but it may be better for those who have bad postures as you aren’t required to strain as much. Though it cuts well, the blades aren’t known for holding their edge so that they may need frequent re-sharpening.


  • Takes up little space among the rest of your gear
  • Manages well with larger limbs
  • Gives you precise cuts when aligned properly


  • It seems to dull quickly and has the potential to jam

Sportsman Pocket Chainsaw is a budget-friendly choice that’s the ultimate space-saver that can handle thicker limbs.

Best Camping Saw: Sven Saw 21″ Saw

Sven-Saw 60th Anniversary Engraved 21' Folding Saw

The Sven Saw 21″ Saw is constructed from high-quality materials so that you can get the most out of it down the road, a feature that can benefit those of you unwilling to purchase new gear every year. It folds readily into the aluminum frame for safety, and with it being so lightweight, it’s quick and easy to pack.

The blades are hidden completely when folded as well, so there’s no risk of it snagging on anything. Cutting is a simple job, but though it may offer a secure grip, it isn’t that comfortable to hold like the Gerber Freescape Camp Saw. Gloves may be able to help with that though.


  • Sturdy construction so that it can last years
  • Simple to assemble and disassemble
  • Ultralight in weight and compact


  • Doesn’t offer the most comfortable grip

Sven Saw 21″ Saw is the best camp saw if you want something that will last you well over time without losing its sharpness and powerful cutting ability.

Prepare for the following dangers mother nature can throw at you with our guides:

Last update on 2023-01-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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