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Expedition Partner Feature: Motor City Axe

Timeless. Powerful. Hand crafted in Detroit. It is our privilege to feature Motor City Axe as our first #ExpeditionPartner!

We pity anyone who has never experienced the primal satisfaction of splitting a log in one clean strike. Or glanced back at their freshly-cut trail that will forever lead to your favorite campground, stand, or wilderness destination. Or even, God forbid, never sensed their own power simply by holding an axe.

The first trails and settlements across the Detroit region were tamed through harnessing the power of these tools. The tomahawks of the First Nations of the Great Lakes - the Ojibwe, Potawatomi, Shawnee, Huron, Iroquois, and Odawa - cut the initial trails that now form our roads and crafted the canoes that first explored our waterways. The hatchets and axes of 18th century Europeans built our first cities. The woodsmen of the 19th century formed the bedrock of Michigan and Ontario's behemoth lumber industry. And these same tools were largely wielded by our returned WWII heroes to establish Greater Detroit's first state parks.

Fast-forward to our own century, many an outdoor enthusiast often feels lost in digital or corporate dementia. Truth be told, Expedition Detroit partially launched from an innate desire to reclaim a sense of adventure and resilience within our immediate outdoors. A local escape from the confines of the Covid-era's "work-from-home," and therefore almost always working, construct.

We're far from being the only venture to answer this calling by aligning our business with our great outdoors. In fact, we're far from being the first in the Detroit region to do so.

Our first "Expedition Partner" - Motor City Axe - has been outfitting our outdoor community with the tools to reclaim an intrepid lifestyle since 2018. It's our privilege to partner with this awesome brand now.


Our story with Motor City Axe dates way back to roughly a month ago. In case you missed our April Newsletter (not so subtle hint to subscribe), our store is a featured partner with the Michigan Department of Natural Resource's "These Goods are Good for Michigan" campaign. The "These Goods" campaign features several fantastic vendors of goods and services that collectively support Michigan's state parks, trails, and waterways, but one good in particular jumped out at us when we first discovered the campaign.

What can we say - handcrafted, sleek axes and hatchets are compelling products. Motor City Axe immediately caught our attention, and fortunately we were able to connect with them literally the morning that Expedition Detroit went live within the "These Goods" campaign.

The story of Motor City Axe started far beyond this fruitful coincidence - and even before the company's initial launch. Four years before Motor City Axe first cut into Detroit's outdoor industry, its founder discovered his late grandfather's Kelly Axe and Tool hatchet in a garage. His experience with refurbishing that heirloom - plus the countless outdoor experiences begotten from the reinvigorated hatchet - forged the vision for Motor City Axe. A company was born out of a love for lasting craftsmanship, desire to work with their hands, and passion for the outdoors.


Motor City Axe's online shop features a wide variety of new, custom, and vintage axes and hatchets. Each axe and hatchet is made in the U.S.A. and hand-painted in Detroit. The company also sells axe and outdoor-related accessories to complement their flagship products, such as knives, tools, sheaths, hats, and t-shirts.

We'd like to close out this inaugural feature with some inspirational words from Motor City Axe themselves:

The tools we sell have and will withstand the test of time. They tell a story. The city they are crafted in has, countless times, been ruled out, but both have risen from the ashes. What will your story tell?

If that doesn't get you fired up to start chopping, then we don't know what will.


Do you own or operate a local outfitter, small business, or organization involved in the outdoor industry? Would you like to partner with an innovative media company focused solely on outdoor recreational experiences and opportunities within an hour's drive of Downtown Detroit? Awesome - we'd love to work with you! Contact us at


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