Luxury Bikes

Check out the $630 Trail Boss Tool Set – The trail builder’s multi-tool?

A double here, a berm there and braap! Building trails is a big part of the fun. But transporting all those tools? A necessary evil, at least so far. The US brand Trail Boss claims to have created the multi-tool among trail building tools with its modular construction kit. But how does it perform on the Trail-in-Progress?

Trail Boss tool set | Price: from $600 | Color: Black, Blue | Manufacturer’s website

Anyone who builds and creates their own paths knows that cutting a beautiful path through a forest usually requires more than just a shovel. Often you have to raid half the tool shed to go out and build a path, and lugging around all those tools is heavy and inconvenient. Shovel, rake, hoe and saw are the bare essentials to transform a forest into a hiking paradise. US brand Trail Boss claims to have found a clever solution to this problem by combining all the necessary trail building tools into one convenient set – all neatly packaged for easy and unobtrusive transport. It sounds good at first, but you have to pay 630 US dollars (approx. 582 euros) for the privilege. Is this tool set from the Bellingham-based trail building tool specialist worth the money?

The Trail Boss tool set in detail

The trail tool set consists of a 3-piece handle that can be screwed together as needed.
The main handle can be extended by one or two additional segments depending on the desired length. The main handle and one of the two extensions are made of glass fiber reinforced plastic. In our case, we opted for the steel version for the second expansion, which costs an additional $30 but should prove to be more robust.

The three-piece handle of the Trail Boss tool can then be combined with three different heads. The McLeod tool consists of a cutting/digging blade on one end and rake tines on the other end. You get another attachment with a hoe and pickaxe combo, as well as a 13-inch saw blade. They are all included in the 3-piece handle set. Trail Boss also comes with a collet, a small brush, and a tube of grease for assembly.

You should always use the brush and grease provided…
… for cleaning the threads when disassembling and assembling the tool.

The entire set is stored in a cover made of very robust fabric, which fits into most backpacks thanks to its compact dimensions of just 22 x 43 cm. However, at 4.03 kg it is not light and that is clearly noticeable on the back. If you’re having a hard time justifying the $630 price tag, you can also order the handles and heads individually, meaning you can only pick up the tools you need.

The Trail Boss tool set in the test

Once you unpack the Trail Tool, it is quick and easy to assemble. Lightly grease the threads, screw the handle segments together, and then attach the desired head. The super light handle has a comfortable diameter and length, making it easy to handle. Thanks to the weight distribution of the heavy head and light handle, you shouldn’t have any problems working for hours. The steel handle segment is ideal for rocky terrain and is more durable than the fiberglass poles. The workmanship of the tool is high quality and the edges are still relatively sharp even after many trail building sessions in rocky terrain. In addition, the design of the heads makes them useful for trail building and offers a wide range of options for working on the terrain. The only thing we were missing was a shovel to move large amounts of earth or create a crack. However, we were told that this was already in the works.

Thanks to the comfortable length and diameter of the handle, the Trail Boss tool fits comfortably in your hands.

If you want to change the head on the go, it’s just as quick and easy as assembling the tool. However, it is important to always keep the threads clean and use the brush when replacing the head. If you’re not careful, you’ll quickly damage the threads. Also pay attention to the protective plastic caps on the threads, as these can easily get lost among the roots and stones on the path. Once you’ve finished your trail building session, the entire set can be quickly stored in your backpack.

Even after using the tool set in rocky terrain…
… the edges of the heads remained relatively sharp.

The Trail Boss tool set is particularly suitable for spontaneous solo trail building missions on remote trails that can only be reached on foot or by bike and where you don’t want or can’t lug the entire tool shed with you. If you’re traveling in a large group and embarking on a trail building adventure, you’ll typically want to take the entire tool shed with you so you have a variety of shovels or hoes to choose from.

When you’re done building trails for the day, the tool kit can be quickly disassembled and stored in the sturdy packaging, which is compact enough to fit in most backpacks.

Our conclusion about the Trail Boss tool set

The Trail Boss tool set is beautifully compact and offers tons of functionality: ideal for the solo trail builder. The high-quality workmanship and durability justify the high price to some extent. Still, the price may deter many trail builders because you could buy a wheelbarrow full of tools for the same money. However, if you value efficiency, don’t enjoy lugging around a lot of tools, and feel like splurging, the Trail Boss tool set is a reliable partner.


  • high quality
  • quick assembly
  • excellent functionality
  • compact trail tool


  • juicy price
  • Couplings must always be kept clean
  • no shovel

For more information visit

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Words: Benedict Schimdt Photos: Peter Walker

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