Carry one of these implements of utility (destruction?) with you into your local forest, desert or mountain and wolves, cougars, bears, lions, etc. will look be turning tail as if they were staring at Chuck Norris with a grimace of determination on his face. Hell, Mother Nature herself may just back down, send you some sunny, warm weather, and give you an encouraging pat on the backside.
Gerber Bear Grylls Parang
Love him or hate him, you can't deny: the man inspired a mean friggin' machete. The Parang is your go-to for chopping down branches and weeds--or scaring the crap out of the first one to go to sleep at the campsite. It features a carbon steel blade and ergonomic grip. Retail price is $40.
SOG Revolver Seal
'At's nah a knife, this is a ...saw? The Revolver Seal from SOG delivers two wilderness essentials in one transformative package. You get a mean, 4.75-inch blade with serrated and smooth edges. And if that doesn't cut it, maybe the survival saw that tucks into the handle will hack the job. Retails for $41.50.
Cold Steel Two Handed Machete
Need to cut down trees as opposed to branches? The Cold Steel Two Handed Machete is your go-to. This hefty blade looks like a massive barber's razor. The machete packs 32 inches of overall length in its polypropylene handle and carbon steel blade. Cold Steel even claims that it'll double as a sword in an unexpected self-defense situation. Better be the guy holding it. Just $26.
Condor Wilderness Tool
This multi-functional tool doesn't look quite as intimidating as some of the other tools here, but it has a whole lot of sharpness all over. That's because it combines a shovel, brush/guthook/pick, machete blade and hatchet into one package. And it does all that while weighing in at under a pound. Unlike paying separately for all those tools, this one will run you under 50 bucks.
CRKT Razel SS7
If any tool on this list looks like it would be carried by the villain of a 1980s slasher film, this would be the one. The straight top edge of this maniacal-looking piece is designed to provide an extra razor-sharp edge for tapping and pushing, while your standard long blade provides the cutting. For those jobs that require more finesse than a 7-inch blade has to offer, there's also a bottle and jar opener on the handle. $200 and the Razel SS7 is all yours.
Kinda' like a machete, kinda' like the Razel, but with a little extra bite, the Woodsman's Pal was designed to take on the tasks of many tools. The company claims it will serve as machete, axe, hatchet, pruning saw, pruning shear, pruning knife, bow saw, lopper and Bowie knife. And also sheer trouble deterrent. There are several versions of the Pal, which start at $68.
SOG Double Headed Axe
I'd love to give the impression that this list came straight from my demented mind to your eyes, but truth be told, it's only because I came across one or two items that fit the bill that I ever thought of it. And the Sog Double Headed Axe is just such an item. I'd like to call this mf'er a "battle axe", but SOG's already got something called the Battle Axe. While that is actually scarier than this one, this is more aimed at tasks you'd actually have in the wild--like chopping wood. Big enough to exert stump-shaving force, but light enough to wield with one hand, the Double Headed Axe is good for splitting and cutting wood--or for military ops like extraction and breaching. I don't know how you get more bad-ass than that. Retail price is $80.