I just finished putting the finishing touches on a new piece of equipment for winter camping. To make collecting water for drinking while winter camping easier I decided to make an ice chisel. Now I'll be able to open a hole in the lake ice, provided we are camped near a lake to obtain fresh liquid drinking water. For the last few years I've been melting snow which works fine but is time consuming and uses a lot of fuel if a stove is used. Plus there really isn't much moisture in snow so it takes a lot of it to fill the water bottles. Another draw back of melting snow is that the area right next to camp can get a bit messy with ash from the fire and saw dust from cutting wood, making it difficult to find clean snow. On recent trips some of the fellas have used an axe to open a water hole which works also but they got very wet and inevitably iced up from the spray. One of the benefits of collecting lake water is the opportunity to star gaze with an uninterrupted view from the lake ice.
Measures - 10" X 3" X 1/2"
Weight - 5 lbs
Handle - 60" hardwood with a lanyard
Blade - high carbon steel with 45 degree bevel
The chisel is big and heavy so there will be some trade offs. On the plus side it will open a hole in the ice in short order but on the negative side it is a bit too heavy to use as a probe while traveling on dangerous ice. (which I tend to avoid anyway)