If you want to find the shovel in Sons of the Forest, it's trickier than you might expect. If you've done just a little exploring and stumbled across those spots on the ground at points of interest that show a shovel symbol, you may think it's a tool near at hand. But this staple of survival games is actually hidden deep within a cave and there are a few prerequisites to finding it.
If you're wondering how to save your game, there's a guide for that. Or if you just want a few tips on how to survive the cannibal-infested island, I can help with that too. If you're keen to find out how to get the shovel in Sons of the Forest, here's what you need to know before you set out.
Before you set out to find the shovel
The shovel is hidden deep within a cave, but to make your way to it, you'll need to find the rebreather so you can breathe underwater—such a comforting thought—and the rope gun to use the ziplines inside.
You'll find the rebreather inside a cave on the beach to the north of the island, and the rope gun is located in a cave to the west. Check the map below for the cave entrance locations.
Sons of the Forest shovel location
Look for the cave entrance to the west of the snowy, mountainous region in the center of the island. I've marked the location on the map above but it's easy to spot as you'll find three bodies "standing" in the water close by. Like the caves you've explored leading up to this, it's rather dark inside, so you'll want to either pull out your lighter or craft a torch to see where you're going.
Unlike the rope gun cave, this one is pretty linear, so you won't have a bunch of forks in the path to worry about. Just keep trekking forwards and make good use of explosives and firearms if you have them to clear out all the enemies.
Head forward into the cave, and you'll come to a drop in front of you so look up and ride the zipline waiting for you. A pool of water is close by and you'll need to make use of that rebreather and swim underwater and through the tunnel that doubles back on itself initially.
Keep following the tunnel and you'll reach a place where you'll take a bit of a water slide down. Look for dry land and follow the linear tunnel once again and you'll eventually arrive in a large cavern which is strangely lit. You'll spot the outside of a big underground research facility in the distance and waiting for you just in front of it is a dead body with the shovel.
Unlike the rebreather cave and rope gun cave, you'll actually have to head backwards a ways to escape. As you're leaving the way you came, rocks will explode off the side of a wall to your left in a tight passage. It's one of those big, gnarly crevice creatures like in the rope gun cave. Blow the thing to bits with the hand grenades helpfully left in cases for you there and make your escape through the new tunnel behind it.
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Sarah started as a freelance writer in 2018, writing for PCGamesN, TechRadar, GamingBible, Red Bull Gaming and more. In 2021, she was offered a full-time position on the PC Gamer team where she takes every possible opportunity to talk about World of Warcraft and Elden Ring. When not writing guides, most of her spare time is spent in Azeroth—though she's quite partial to JRPGs too. One of her fondest hopes is to one day play through the ending of Final Fantasy X without breaking down into a sobbing heap. She probably has more wolves in Valheim than you.
- Lauren MortonAssociate Editor