Best camping saws

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Although an ax is handy if you want to chop wood for a campfire, a saw is even more useful. It can handle branches and larger pieces of lumber more efficiently and is easier to handle. 

A good camping saw can be used in dense woodland and other wild areas for cleanly cutting up fallen wood for your fire. Essentially, they work the same as any saw, with a sharp-toothed edge cutting through the wood. But in wild environments where a full-size saw would be unwieldy, a camping saw is more compact and foldable so you can access the wood you need to fuel a blazing fire back at camp. Here are the ones we’d recommend for any outdoor adventures. 

Best overall

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Sportsman Pocket Chainsaw 36 Inch Long Chain

Longer chain for quicker cutting

This pocket saw has a longer 36-inch heat-treated steel chain which means longer strokes and quicker cutting times. It also helps to reach higher branches and cuts thicker limbs. You can sharpen the chain with a 5/32 round chainsaw file. It comes in a rugged nylon carry case with a firesteel thrown in.

Best value

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Mossy Oak Mini Saw

Small but useful for hunting and trimming

There are bigger saws than this diminutive cutter from Mossy Oak but few as easy to take with you into the wilderness. Lightweight and very sharp, it’s good for trimming small branches and dressing a deer when hunting. The rubber grip is sturdy, the blade stiff and you can keep it on your belt with the carrying case included.

Best for quick cuts

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Homyall 24"-33 Teeth Pocket Chainsaw

More teeth means it cuts on every stroke

This carbon steel chainsaw, which comes in 24 inch and 36-inch sizes, has three times more teeth than other saws. They are bi-directional so cut on both strokes, tearing through wood with ease. The 26-inch saw weighs 4.8 oz and fits in a nylon carry pouch that you can put on your belt so it’s always with you.

Best for backpackers

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Primos Folding Saw

Folds up like a pocket knife

A push-button unlocks the blade on this compact saw so you can fold it into the lightweight nylon handle that has a grippy rubber coating. The teeth on the serrated blade are offset for quick, clean cutting. It comes in a nylon pouch with the Primos Hunting logo on.

Bottom line

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Don’t make the mistake of thinking an ax is always the best tool for every wood cutting job. A camping saw is invaluable for reducing a tangle of fallen branches into a nice neat stack of wood for your campfire. They are also great for pruning trees and general gardening at home too, of course. We recommend the Sportsman Pocket Chainsaw 36 Inch Long Chain as the best camping saw for most people. It’s compact enough for any backpack and yet can cut through branches surprisingly quickly and with a lot less fuss than a powered chainsaw. 

If you want a folding-blade style camping saw rather than a chain, we like the Primos Folding Saw. It’s a good folding design that’s easy to lock into place and start using quickly and you can take it to backcountry locations where a traditional saw would be far too unwieldy.

Advnture team

Launched in July 2020, Advnture is the ideal destination for anyone who loves the great outdoors. Whether you're into epic hikes through the wilderness, camping trips with the family, climbing with your friends, or looking for a trail running personal best, our team of experts will point you in the right direction, with top buying advice and in-depth guides to help you get the most of your time in the backcountry.