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HomeHikingDepart No Hint: Choosing the Proper Backpacking Trowel

Depart No Hint: Choosing the Proper Backpacking Trowel

Utilizing a Depart No Hint trowel is likely one of the most accountable issues you are able to do to protect the backcountry for others to get pleasure from. Whereas there’s nothing fairly as satisfying as having an excellent bowel motion open air within the crisp morning air, surrounded by white-capped mountains and wild flowers, it’s essential to depart no hint of your “passage.” With a view to protect that wilderness feeling for others, you must bury your poo, so it may possibly biodegrade correctly and never turn into an eyesore.

However many Depart No Hint trowels bought immediately are too flimsy to be used in backcountry terrain. That’s why this checklist of trowels consists of many metallic ones that are sturdy and may dig via powerful floor crammed with rocks and roots.


1. The TentLab Dirtsaw Deuce #2 Trowel

WEIGHT 0.6 oz (17g)

FEATURES: Featherweight aluminum is sturdy and long-lasting. Obtainable in a number of vibrant colours so that you received’t lose it. The Lanyard gap helps you to clip it into your backpack. Sharp and hard sufficient to chop via roots and lever out stones.

BEST FOR: Ultralight Backpacking

Made utilizing DAC aluminum, the Dirtsaw Duece #2 (intelligent identify) has large and clean tooth designed to agitate and minimize grime like a serrated knife, however they received’t snag on roots or threaten to chop your hand. Its tooth are protected to allow them to keep sharp and are far sufficient away from the entrance edge that they don’t threaten your hand when utilizing the trowel the wrong way up. This cleverly designed 6.8″ software will be held at both finish, relying on whether or not you might want to dig with the slender finish or scoop with the large finish.

Dirtsaw Deuce

2. Vargo Titanium Dig Dig Trowel

WEIGHT: 1.25 oz (36g)

FEATURES: Serrated finish for reducing via roots with a snug, rolled-edge deal with.  Can serve double obligation as a sand, snow, or tent stake. Has a lanyard gap so you may clip it to your backpack.

BEST FOR: Backpackers who you might want to dig via thick roots or rocky floor and wish a sturdy trowel with a serrated innovative.


The Vargo Titanium Dig Dig Device is a multi-purpose titanium trowel designed by Brian Vargo, a backpacker and titanium manufacturing specialist who’s most likely designed extra titanium backpacking gear than anybody else on the planet. Whereas heavier than the opposite titanium trowels listed above, the Dig Dig is by far the best to make use of as a tent stake or snow anchor, a dual-use profit that’s seldom realized by different Depart No Hint trowels.

3. Bogler Ultralight Trowel

WEIGHT: 0.48oz (13.5g)

FEATURES: Excessive-grade aluminum trowel with a thin serrated edge that cuts cleanly via turf and small roots. 

BEST FOR: Backpackers who need a very light-weight trowel.

Bogler Aluminum LNT Trowel

The Bogler Firm Ultralight Trowel

Store at Storage Grown

4. QiWiz Large Dig Trowel

WEIGHT: 0.6 oz (15 grams)

FEATURES: Brightly coloured so you may’t lose it with a pointy finish that’s able to reducing via roots, chopping via packed mud, and levering out stones. A full 7.25″ lengthy, you may simply dig a cathole that’s the requisite 6″ deep and confirm its depth utilizing the trowel. An added lanyard gap makes it straightforward to clip to your backpack. The painted deal with shouldn’t be sharp and straightforward to carry.

BEST FOR: UL Backpackers who need a hand-fabricated titanium trowel made by a one-person cottage gear firm within the USA.


The QiWiz Large Dig (pronounced “chee-wiz”) is a hand-crafted titanium trowel made by Depart No Hint Grasp Educator, Rob Kelly. Thought-about the “Yoda of trowels”, Rob, who’s path identify is QiWiz, is obsessed with educating individuals easy methods to decrease their impression when backpacking and tenting. A power tinkerer, Rob made a titanium trowel for himself out of scrap metallic for his private use. When different hikers noticed it on the path, they provided to purchase one from him and now he’s bought lots of to backpackers and thru-hikers. Tremendous laborious and sturdy, however ultralight, the titanium Large Dig will final a lifetime and may serve double obligation as a tent-stake.

MORE: QiWiz sells two different handmade titanium trowels. The “Unique” weighs lower than 0.4 oz and is 6″ lengthy and the MEGA DIG which weighs just below 1 oz and is 8.25″ lengthy.

Store at Storage Grown

5. GSI OutDoors Cathole Sanitation Trowel

WEIGHT: 3.1 oz

FEATURES: Serrated edge helps minimize via vegetation. Measurements on blade assist measure cathole depth. Lanyard on deal with helps you to clip it to your backpack.

BEST FOR: Funds oriented backpacker that digs catholes in much less difficult soil circumstances.

GSI Cathole Trowel

The GSI Outside Cathole Sanitation Trowel is likely one of the hottest and least costly backpacking trowels bought immediately and sometimes utilized by Depart No Hint educators when educating LNT consciousness classes. It’s constituted of recycled plastic, making it robust sufficient for the much less demanding soil circumstances discovered in lots of designated campgrounds and recreation areas. A full 10.3″ lengthy, it’s simpler to dig with than shorter trowels, particularly for youngsters.

Store at GSI



PRICE – Depart No Hint Trowels usually are not that costly, however I present a full vary of choices beneath if you wish to get monetary savings and nonetheless get an excellent product.

WEIGHT – Proudly owning a light-weight trowel will increase the chance that you simply’ll convey it with you in your journeys. Heavy trowels are a “ache within the ass.” Pun meant!

COLOR – Trowels needs to be brightly coloured so that you don’t lose them in wilderness settings. It’s straightforward to place down a trowel and lose it in opposition to a background of inexperienced or brown, however much less so if it has a garish coloration that’s not usually present in nature.

MATERIAL – The fabric {that a} trowel is constituted of issues. If preserving the wilderness is your aim, it doesn’t make a lot sense to purchase a product constituted of petrochemicals that received’t decompose in case you throw it in a landfill.

DIGGING EDGE – An excellent Depart No Hint trowel wants to have the ability to dig via quite a lot of totally different soil sorts from ones with dense root networks to hard-packed soil and dirt. Having a sturdy edge, able to busting via powerful soil circumstances and levering out rocks is a should.

LENGTH – The really useful depth of a Depart No Hint cathole is 6-8″ deep. To dig that deep, you want a trowel that has a protracted sufficient deal with and blade.

DURABILITY – A trowel is a important piece of backcountry gear that ought to face up to years of harsh use, UV injury, and once you unintentionally drive over it together with your automotive.

MADE IN USA – Let’s face it: The US is on the best way to changing into a third-world nation as a result of we’ve off-shored our manufacturing base. If remaining essentially the most highly effective nation on earth is essential to you, you’ll purchase merchandise made within the USA.

BUYING ONLINE – Test the vendor’s return coverage before you purchase, however you may virtually at all times return an unused trowel inside a sure timeframe after buying. I like to recommend shopping for your best choice, testing it at dwelling, and returning/exchanging it if it doesn’t really feel fairly proper.

LEAVE NO TRACE – Be taught extra about go away no hint and wilderness ethics.

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Disclosure: I’ve acquired a few of the merchandise listed above from producers whereas buying others with my very own cash. I’m a Depart No Hint Grasp Educator and train Depart No Hint consciousness courses.

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