If you grew up out in the sticks, you’ll probably recognize this tool. On the other hand, city folk might be puzzled by it at first.
Commonly called either a fence tool or fence pliers, it is typically used for, well, putting up fencing. The tool is like the bastard son of a pair of pliers and a hammer, with a bit of wire cutters tossed into the mix.
Around 10-11″ long, it isn’t tiny but could well be worth the space it will take up in a pack. The tool features a hammer head, wire cutters, staple pulling jaws on the top, and a spike opposite the hammer.
While you could use a rock or possible the butt end of your knife to pound in stakes for your emergency shelter, the hammer part of this tool will do the job easier. In a pinch, either the hammer or the spike could serve as a weapon.
The wire cutters can trim up your snare wire when needed. The staple pulling jaws could serve as a vise as you cobble together makeshift tools in the field.
New, these go for around $15 but you can often find them used at rummage sales for far less. While it is obviously too large for a minimalist kit, odds are you can find room for it in any larger bug out bag.