How to get the shovel in Sons of the Forest

Sons of the forest shovel
(Image credit: Endnight Games)

The Sons of the Forest shovel location is in the snowy mountains in the middle of the  middle, and will require some special items to reach, inaccessible without them. It's a perilous excursion, but one definitely worth doing, as the shovel allows you to reach essential story locations as well as powerful weapons, opening up the tougher challenges of the game as well as giving you the tools to defeat them.

It's worth keeping in mind that you'll need two items to get the shovel: the Sons of the Forest rebreather, which allows you to survive underwater for longer periods of time, and the Sons of the Forest rope gun, which allows you to string up ziplines to access new areas. We've covered how to get both of those at the guides attached, but once you have them, you'll be able to access the location of the shovel in Sons of the Forest - all explained below.

How to get the Shovel in Sons of the Forest

Once you have the rebreather and rope gun, then you'll be able to get the shovel. This isn't going to be easy and, unless you're very well supplied, prepare to save a lot and sneak or run past monsters. There's a lot of creatures here that attack on sight and without good armour, weapons and healing supplies you probably won't survive too many fights.

However, I've done it with nothing but a spear and a lot of patience so if you want to get the Sons of the Forest shovel, I can show you.

Sons of the forest shovel cave location

(Image credit: Endnight Games)
  1. Head to this cave, near the snowy part of the map, to start getting the shovel. You'll find some bodies on stakes in the water, and supplies scattered around. Grab the slingshot from one of the bodies, and build a shelter to save your game. I'd recommend taking the time to build a wooden one here and keeping any tarps you have to build inside the cave to get a checkpoint along the way (remember you can break the stick in a tarp tent shelter with an axe to get it back). 

Sons of the forest cave zipline leading to the shovel

(Image credit: Endnight Games)
  1. Right inside the cave you'll see a light on a rope with some cloth hanging on it,  use the rope gun here to get further into the cave. 

  2. You'll land in an open area with some water that's clear of enemies. There's an O2 canister by a light so be sure to pick that up. Then dive in the water and immediately swim down. You should see a channel heading straight down, follow it and you'll end up swimming back under where you were just standing. 

underwater route to the Sons of the forest shovel

(Image credit: Endnight Games)
  1. When you come out of the water there will be a lot of basic enemies. If you keep goading them and retreating into the water you can get a lot of them to drown. You can also run straight past them as there's an exit they can't follow you through at the end. Keep an eye out for another O2 canister here as well.

  2. Once past the monsters there's a one way slide at the end you'll go down. You'll land in a safe area with some supplies. Keep moving forwards and you'll pass through a narrow gap with a light ahead. There's a few enemies here but they're well spaced out, so take the time to kill them and harvest the creepy armor they drop. Then head on until you see a light pointing the way forward. 

  3. You'll take a tunnel into another area with a light in the middle. This bit is tough as there's a finger enemy (big mouth on legs) and a couple of twins, so be ready. Sneak as much as possible and be ready to run if you get caught. If you have to fight, retreat back to the entrance where the narrower space will stop you getting surrounded, and make molotovs deadly. However, the exit here leads to an underwater section where the monsters can't follow so you can also just run straight through.

Sons of the forest shovel cave underwater section

(Image credit: Endnight Games)
  1. When you come out of the water there's big group of enemies - mainly basics but one finger. You can lure them to the water and drown some of them, and there's also a space to the right where stalactites form a protective cage you can poke a spear through to damage them without any risk. Clear these enemies until you can safely move forward. 

  2. Here's where things get dicey. It's now a more or less straight line to the Sons of the Forest shovel. But t's a narrow path filled with enemies - pretty much one of everything, with basics, a finger, a twin and some babies. Deal with them however you want and keep moving forward - when you can see some fluorescent strip lights you've found the shovel. Just look for the light shining on a body where you can retrieve it. 

Sons of the forest shovel

(Image credit: Endnight Games)

Now that you have the shovel, you'll be able to access new areas and items that were previously unavailable to you. The most obvious example of this is the Sons of the Forest shotgun, located at the northeast peninsula, but you can also use the shovel to uncover certain plot-essential locations, such as uncovering the Sons of the Forest keycards that are needed to access the latter stages of the game. 

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Leon Hurley
Managing editor for guides

I'm GamesRadar's Managing Editor for guides, which means I run GamesRadar's guides and tips content. I also write reviews, previews and features, largely about horror, action adventure, FPS and open world games. I previously worked on Kotaku, and the Official PlayStation Magazine and website.