Monday, April 18, 2016

Review - Council Tool Pack Axe

Hey folks, I was lucky enough to have been chosen by Craig(Rooster) and Council Tool to try out their new Pack Axe which is part of their new "Wood-Craft" line of axes, found here http://counciltool.com/new-wood-craft-axe-line/.  Rooster designed this axe and Council liked enough to pick it up.  Smart move on both accounts in my opinion.  So here is the breakdown and some of my thoughts on the axe.

This is the smaller version:
OAL listed at 19inches.  Mine was just at 18 1/3".
Head weight listed at 2lbs.  Took their word on it as it felt 2lbs for sure!
Edge length - 3.5"  -  My only picky miss on this axe is I would have liked to see the edge length in the 3.75-4" range. 

 





I liked the hanging method and found the profile very good for an all-round performer



For those that aren't familiar with the design by Rooster he took the Council Tool boy's axe head and trimmed it down to make it a little lighter and more suited for a smaller handle.  But keeping it all axe and not going light enough to make it a hatchet.  He accomplished this nicely as I found out.  Here are some tasks I put it through that just about any of you would do in any camp.

Chopping:
The axe did very well here.  The head profile and weight was biting deep with minimal swing effort and releasing out of the wood nicely.











Had this tree down in no time.  Limbing it was quick work too





Bucking:
This was easy work as well.  The head weight really lets you swing easy.  The 18-19" handle is just long enough for a comfortable two handed swing. 







Splitting:
I got a few logs sawed up and it proved to eat through Pine without issue.  It feels like an axe as the forward weight of the head gives it a good punch for splitting.







Edge was holding up very well



I also put it to work on some seasoned Cedar and did fine here as well





Edge did fine with a ferro rod





Overall I really enjoyed using this axe.  It is right up my alley as I like a heavier head on a shorter handle.  I think the fact you can pick your handle length preference is a great idea.  As for this size it definitely offers a half axe that works more like an axe than a hatchet.  Hits for me were the handle shaping and overall quality of the axe.  Also the heel is designed to be used as a hookeroon and found it did work as such. The handle contour is just what I like with a thinner neck and nice palm swell.



alignment was also good and the hanging method with circular metal wedge you can count on holding up over time



I am glad to see another nice bushcraft suited axe from a USA company.  Rooster put some good thought into this design.  It is a very strong all-round performer and offers something different than the Swedish competitors.  You get a true half axe that is not a long hatchet.  I also think the steel from Council is better suited for the hardwoods in my experience.   l'd like to thank both Rooster and Council Tool for allowing me to be part of the trial run.  It was most enjoyable and I hope the new axe line does well.  I found this axe to be a great choice for a portable bushcraft axe.

Updated pic of mine after a little staining of the handle



thanks for looking

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

hangin' out in the woods

Well I rounded up my outdoor woods crew and hit the woods for the day.  It was cold but they wanted to try fishing anyways so dad had a full load to carry.



making our way towards a pond







a beaver has moved into this pond.  His activity wasn't here last year





well we didn't fish much as they got preoccupied with exploring around so we hit another spot with some pine trees that we could setup our relaxation camp for a bit.  Kids were ready to kick their boots off





I forgot I broke Jack's aluminum toggles the last trip, weight limit issues, so we had to make some "organic" toggles. haha!



used the Littlbug Jr. wood stove this trip.  No sharp tools for the fire.  Used the pine needles and dry grass for starter and snapped twigs.  Quick and easy.



hot chocolate and some instant coffee espresso



now time to kick back and take in the tree top view from a hammock





Jack was close to dozing off in this pic.  Easy to do out here with a warm belly of hot chocolate



quick camp shot before take down.  It was getting dark and the kids wanted to cruise in the truck for deer spotting.



fire put out and covered



hammocks lined up



all packed up and heading out








thanks for looking

Monday, January 25, 2016

My New "Old" truck for outdoor fun

Well I have long wanted to go back to an older truck for my outdoor driving needs.  I was able to make that happen a few weeks back.  The new "old" ride is a 1995 Chevy Silverado.  It has the original 350 TBI engine that I really like.  This was apparently the last year GM used that engine, they went to the vortec model after that.  But I've used and maintained the 350 TBI engine for about 8 years on two previous 1992 trucks so I am very familiar with it.  Overall this one is in decent shape and just what I was looking to find.  I have a car for work that gets good gas mileage so this will be the third vehicle for my fun and truck needs :)  Anyways, just wanted to share my recent acquisition to the outdoor arsenal of fun.  Here's a few pics








 

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

New Crossbow and a Deer Down!!!

Well this was my first crossbow hunt and I am 1:1.  This doe is on the small side and nothing to brag about...Except in great eating.  Which is what I was after.  My three year drought was dragging on like a bad reunion or something.  Glad it's gone and just in time with only a couple weeks in the bow season left.  I was fortunate enough to be gifted a crossbow at Christmas and while they probably make the bow hunting purist throw-up.  I have to say I like them and they do the job fine.  I may do a post later on the bow.  We'll see.  Anyways.  Just a few pics for this one of my spot and the harvest.  The convex Redlore knife worked great in boning out the meat.  It was the perfect size and the point was dropped enough it wasn't an issue.  Couldn't have been more pleased with it. 



The deer came up and was right behind that downed tree to the right in the below pic, and left in the above pic







Getting to work with the redlore!



Well I got it home and just got done butchering it up nice and in the freezer.  It was a great evening to take in and I am happy.  This is probably the smallest deer I have taken and it feels like the hardest earned.  Funny how that goes...

thanks for looking