Canoe Axe-Crafting | ON3 Jason Salyer

Welcome to my blog post where we explore the exciting world of canoe axe-crafting with ON3 Jason Salyer. As an expert in his craft, Jason has spent years honing his skills and perfecting his techniques. This post will delve into the unique process of canoe axe-crafting and what sets it apart. Get ready for an informative and fascinating adventure into the world of traditional craftsmanship.

Canoe Axe-Crafting: A Traditional Skill at the Heart of Wilderness Survival


In today’s day and age, we are surrounded by technology, which has made our lives easier in many ways. While this is a great development, it has also made us lose touch with nature and the traditional ways of living. One of these traditions is axe-crafting, which has been around for centuries and plays a vital role in wilderness survival.

To understand the importance of this skill, we talked to ON3 Jason Salyer, a professional canoe expedition and bushcraft guide, who actively practices and teaches axe-crafting. In this article, we will discuss the significance of canoe axe-crafting and share Salyer’s insights and expertise.

The Significance of Canoe Axe-Crafting

Although the primary purpose of an axe is to chop wood, crafting a canoe axe requires a different set of skills. A canoe axe is traditionally used for carving, shaping, and smoothing the wood for a canoe. Crafting a canoe axe can also be used to make a variety of other wooden tools such as paddles, bow drills, and tent poles.

Crafting your own canoe axe can save a lot of money as a traditional, high-quality canoe axe can cost anywhere between $200-$500. It can also be a great way to pass on the tradition to younger generations while also honing survival skills that may come in handy in emergency situations.

How to Craft a Canoe Axe?

Crafting a canoe axe requires knowledge of traditional woodworking techniques, and Salyer recommends seeking help from experienced crafters before attempting it yourself. Here are some general steps to craft a canoe axe:

  1. Choose a good quality axe head that is made from high carbon steel.
  2. Measure the handle length for the axe and select the right piece of wood, with a straight and knot-free grain.
  3. Split the wood to make a wedge for the axe handle and carve it to fit the axe head.
  4. Leave the axe head and wedge to dry for a few days.
  5. Carve the handle to the desired shape and sand it smooth.
  6. Attach the axe head to the handle with the wedge and secure it in place.

Salyer emphasizes that patience and attention to detail are essential when crafting a canoe axe. It is also crucial to prioritize safety and use the appropriate safety equipment, such as gloves and eye protection.


  1. Why is it important to learn traditional skills like canoe axe-crafting?
    ANS: Learning traditional skills like axe-crafting can help us reconnect with nature, save money, and hone survival skills that may come in handy in emergency situations.

  2. Do I need any special tools to craft a canoe axe?
    ANS: Crafting a canoe axe requires basic woodworking tools, including a splitting maul or hatchet, a drawknife, and a rasp.

  3. Can I use any type of wood to craft a canoe axe?
    ANS: No, it is essential to select a straight-grained, knot-free, and durable wood, such as hickory, ash, or white oak, for the handle.

  4. Is it safe to use a handmade canoe axe for regular use?
    ANS: Yes, if the canoe axe has been crafted properly and with safety precautions in mind.

  5. Can I learn canoe axe-crafting from ON3 Jason Salyer?
    ANS: Yes, Salyer offers axe-crafting workshops and can be contacted for more information.


In conclusion, canoe axe-crafting is not only a traditional skill but also an essential aspect of wilderness survival. Crafting a canoe axe requires patience, attention to detail, and safety precautions, making it a satisfying and rewarding experience. Learning this skill can also help you connect with nature and pass down a timeless tradition to future generations.

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