Sharpen Your Hatchet with a Water Stone
The Right Tool for the Right Job
Out here, you're only as good as your tools. And if those tools aren't up to the task, well, you might as well pack it all in. I use my trusty hatchet every single day, so I need the blade to be razor sharp. I prefer to travel light, tho, which doesn't allow for carrying around heavy sharpening tools. Fortunately, I've learned a trick or two over the years.
The Wet Stone Method
If you're out in the wild and need to sharpen up your blades, just head down to the nearest stream. Grab a wet river rock and draw your blade across it repeatedly at a 15-20 degree angle.
Keep your rock wet as you draw the blade across. Soon, a layer of silty water will build up, which will begin sharpening the blade.
After 20 or 30 strokes, a fine burr should begin to form. This is your sign to start sharpening the other side of your blade.
After another 20 or 30 strokes, your hatchet blade will be sharp again and ready to cut firewood or open a big bag of jerky. You know, the important tasks when you're out in the wilderness.