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How to get the shovel in Sons of the Forest

You’ll need the shovel to uncover bunkers on the island

Shovel animation in Sons of the Forest. Digging up some dirt. Image: Endnight Games/Newnight
Johnny Yu (he/him) is a guides writer at Polygon. He has written about games such as The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, Diablo 4, and Fire Emblem Engage.

As you progress in Sons of the Forest, a first-person survival game currently in Early Access on Steam, you’ll realize that you need a shovel to move on in the story and uncover bunkers hidden around the map. Similar to other key items in Sons of the Forest, the shovel can be found in the game’s intricate cave system.

The catch? There are so many caves! Continue reading to find out which one to enter and learn how to find the shovel in Sons of the Forest.

Required materials

To get the shovel in Sons of the Forest, you’ll need a few items to progress through the cave:

If you’re looking for any of the items above, check the annotated map in the section below to find their locations.

You’ll need a weapon to defend yourself from the enemies inside the cave, so prepare yourself before entering and be ready to take on multiple foes.

How to get the Shovel in Sons of the Forest

  1. Proceed to the cave to the west of the snowy mountains near the center of the map. There will be three streams intersecting at this point, with three dead bodies outside of the entrance. We recommend creating a tent outside of the cave’s entrance in case anything goes wrong inside.
  2. Enter the cave and use the rope gun to ride the zipline into the cave.
  3. Look to the left to find a body of water, and prepare to dive by equipping your rebreather.
  4. Dive downward to find an opening in the cave floor, and follow the underwater tunnel until you reach an opening.
  5. Exit the water and head forward through the cave until you reach a portion of the cave with an incline with running water.
  6. Slide down the slope to land in a pool of water, and turn right to climb onto the cave floor.
  7. Enter the opening and continue through the cave system until you enter a larger room with two deceased humans inside.
  8. Stick to the right side of the cave to find another opening which will lead you to yet another large cavern. One of the bodies inside this room will have a flashlight attachment, so make sure to grab that while you’re here.
  9. Head to the back of the cavern and follow the pathway until you reach another underwater portion of the cave.
  10. Swim forward through the underwater tunnel until you surface on the other side.
  11. Follow the path ahead to find a body with a shovel on its lap.

The next level of puzzles.

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