A proper combination of tools should prepare you for just about any camping scenario, from starting a campfire to hacking through backcountry brush to rediscover your summer cabin. Gerber aims to get you equipped with its new More Than Ready collection.
In this article, we’ve divided the gear into two categories: car camping and backcountry camping. This is based on cargo space and weight, but there’s certainly some overlap in their utility. You’ll see some tools in the backcountry camping section that you’d certainly bring car camping once you own them, and vice versa.
Read through our scenario-based introductions or skip down to the bottom for specs on each knife, tool, or other camping gear.Shop Now
There are camping essentials and then there are car camping essentials. Part of the appeal of car camping is that room, not weight, is your only packing restriction. Sometimes it takes a few trips between the car and campsite, but things like folding chairs, overstuffed coolers, and even the family skillet can come along.
However, there are still some campsite tools that can reduce the amount of work you need to do for a stay outdoors. If you’re making a fire, you’ll need something to ignite it, split wood, or trim limbs into smaller pieces. And then you’ll want a tool or two for opening cans, popping bottles, and potentially fixing things.
A camp knife is always essential, even if it’s just to keep a sharp edge within reach. The Zilch works as an EDC as well as a small camp knife.
Alternatively, you can bring the Armbar Scout knife/multitool that can be of more use around camp. It has a 2.5-inch plain blade and tools like a saw, can and bottle openers, scissors, and even a hammer. You can carry it on your hip or leave it on a communal table for friends and family to use, just in case.
Lastly, there’s the Pack Hatchet, which certainly can crossover into backcountry camping as well. It’s a small hatchet with a 3.5-inch steel blade that gives you some swing power to chop limbs and logs more easily than a knife or smaller tool.
When backcountry camping, weight takes precedence because you’ve got to haul it all out there on your back. You also have a lot less space to work with.
Beyond an EDC, the Gerber Ultimate aims to offer the heft and assurance of a full-tang survival knife. This is likely overkill for car camping but handy when in remote areas of the backcountry. The fixed blade’s drop point and serrated section allow it to cut through cords, limbs, and plenty more.
We like the Stake Out multitool for its variety of campsite-related tools, including the stake puller. One GearJunkie editor’s review of the Stake Out called it “the perfect multitool for the everyday camper.” If you own one, you probably take it car camping as well.
A saw isn’t part of most car camping outings, especially in parks, but one can come in handy for clearing spots in forests, on private land, or setting up a hunting blind. In those cases, a traditional, sold-frame saw can be bulky to carry through brush and over long distances. That’s where the folding frame of the Freescape Camp Saw can come in handy.
For moving some snow, sand, or hacking hard ground, there’s the Gorge Shovel. It folds away for saving space and operates as a spade or hammering edge.
Lastly, there’s the Devour Utensil, a titanium spork with several small tools attached. It’s an example of a tool that makes sense in the backcountry, as it could conserve space and keep pack weight down. Once you own one, why not bring it car camping, too?
Read on to see more detailed descriptions of the gear in the collection.
The Gerber ‘More Than Ready’ Collection
This multitool can tackle many campsite duties, from driving tent stakes to opening a cold one. The Armbar Scout has a locking 2.5-inch plain-edge blade and six other tools: a saw, hammer, scissor, bottle opener, can opener, and pry bar. It has a stainless steel frame and clip, and it weighs 3.1 ounces.Shop Now
Gerber made the Zilch with EDC users in mind. It’s lightweight (2.2 ounces) with a slim frame to make it easy to pull out of a pocket without making its presence known. This is a knife for people who like to abuse its 7Cr steel blade and sharpen it back into form. It has a liner lock, a textured grip, exposed barrels, and deploys via the thumb stud or nail nick.Shop Now
The Stake Out packs a lot of camping-related functionality into its 3.3-ounce frame. The namesake tool is a stake puller, which alleviates some pain points of a task that can range from a minor annoyance to an injured hand.
From there, Gerber included a 2.2-inch plain-edge blade, awl, saw, scissor, file, ruler, bottle opener, firestarter, and set of tweezers as well as a carabiner for clipping it onto a pack or other gear.Shop Now
The hatchet has a 3.5-inch stainless steel blade with a black oxide coating and a tall grind for sharpness. It’s a full-tang tool with a rubber handle wrap for a grip that has what the brand calls “choke-up” ergonomics. The end of the handle makes room for a lanyard, and it comes with a nylon belt-carry sheath.Shop Now
If you know you’ll need to start a fire from scratch carrying a dedicated firestarter is your safest option. It could be a redundancy considering the fire rods included on other Gerber tools, but it’s one that should be worth its weight. It also has a lanyard for more carrying and fastening options and has an emergency whistle at the end.Shop Now
This fixed-blade, full-tang survival knife has a lot going on. It’s shaped with a drop-point blade, the back of which is serrated to help you tackle more tasks. Gerber designed the textured rubber handle for a better grip. The sheath includes a sharpener for keeping its edge and holds a firestarter. Lastly, there’s an emergency whistle attached to the lanyard.Shop Now
When you need to bring a proper saw into the woods, consider the Freescape Saw.
In transport, the frame can stay folded flat. For use, four pivot points unfold to create a tensioned frame with a secure handle grip and a 12-inch cutting surface.Shop Now
This foldable shovel has a glass-filled nylon shaft and rubberized handle for a secure, slightly cushioned grip while digging or hammering. It works as a spade or folds back to reveal a hammer for pounding.Shop Now
The Devour is a multitool you put in your mouth. Yes, it’s a titanium spork with an offset fork and flat cut. The other end attaches six tools, including several openers (box, can, bottle), two flathead screwdrivers, a pry bar, and a kickstand feature to keep it off the ground.
Think of it as a lightweight spork with added functions. It has some overlap with a multitool like the Armbar Scout, so you could opt to leave one of them at home for when weight is of utmost concern.Shop Now
This article is sponsored by Gerber. Find the More Than Ready collection and other gear online.