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6 Best Post Hole Diggers for Rocky Soil

Last year, I wanted to have a fence for my garden to keep the animals out. My first thought was how to build a fence around the garden myself. Because the area surrounding my garden is rocky, I had a tough time digging holes there.

In the meantime, a friend suggested getting my garden a pole hole digger to make things easier. So, the next thing for me was to search for the best pole hole digger for rocky soil.

I tested and tried a lot of post-hole diggers for rocky soil and shortlisted the ones that worked the best for me. I will share the best post-hole diggers for rocky soil with you guys in this post so you don’t have to suffer the way I did. So, without further ado, let’s dig those six best post-hole diggers for rocky soil one by one! But first, let me give a quick explanation of what a post-hole digger is.

Table of Contents

What is a Post Hole Digger?

6 best post hole diggers for rocky soil
simple post hole digger ready for digging soil (credits: fixithomeimprovement)

A post hole digger is a tool used to dig holes for wooden posts and other purposes. It consists of a long handle with a socket in the end, into which a steel blade fits. The blade is primarily beveled on one side and has a sharp point on the other.

The beveled side pushes into the ground to loosen it and lift dirt out, while the point allows you to drive it through hard soil without wedging. Post-hole diggers come in different sizes and thicknesses for different soil types.

Types of post hole diggers

Best post hole digger
Trowels for all occasions credits:gardenandwood

I came across many post-hole diggers, but mostly there were five basic types of post-hole diggers. Let me discuss each of the post-hole diggers individually.

Traditional

Traditional post hole digger

The traditional post hole digger is a manual tool made up of a cylinder, handle, and cutting head. The cylinder is used to drive the cutting head into the ground. This type of digger is made from either metal or plastic. It is usually inexpensive but requires a lot of strength to use. I would not recommend the traditional post-hole digger for people with limited strength or experience digging holes.

Scissor-Action

Scissor action post hole digger

The scissor-action post-hole digger has two handles that open when you pull them towards you and close when you push them away. The scissor action allows you to cut through hard soil without exerting much force on your back while digging. This type of digging tool is useful if you have limited upper body strength or mobility issues that make using a traditional post-hole digger difficult. However, it does cost more than the traditional version because it has more parts that need to be assembled before usage and requires more maintenance during use due to its complex design. But in the end, the results are worth the hassle!

The Universal

The universal post hole digger

The most common post-hole digger has two parallel blades that rotate in opposite directions to create a “V” shape. The two blades are joined at the top by a hinge so that they can move apart or together depending on how much ground needs to be dug out. The handles can also be adjusted so that operators can control how far down they want to go with each stroke.

The double-pivot

The double pivot post hole digger

This post-hole digger has two blades that rotate independently, allowing operators to dig deeper and more quickly than a single-blade design. It also allows them to get closer to walls and fences than other designs because digging deeper holes puts less strain on them.

Offset Post Hole Digger

Offset post hole digger

An Offset Post Hole Digger is the most commonly used post-hole digger. It has a unique offset design that allows you to drive into the ground without hitting your foot or leg with the blade. The offset design also provides greater leverage for getting through hard soil and clay, and the auger can be set to any depth to match your project needs.

Top Picks: The Best Post Hole Diggers

If you look out on the marketplace, you will find a number of post-hole diggers; however, choosing the best one might be tricky. One thing I realized while hand-picking the best post-hole digger for rocky soil was that every digger has unique features.
Based on my tests and trial, I have compiled 6 of the best drills for rocky soil here. So let’s start with the first pick.

1. CountyLine 602377 3-Point Post Hole Digger

Best For Rocky Soil
Countyline 602377 3-point post hole digger

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

“This thing works! And works! Getting this was WAY more cost-effective than renting. Make sure you get the gear oil before you use, but can’t say enough good things about this implement.”
K4 Equestrian Center

Need to dig some holes? The CountyLine 602377 3-Point Post Hole Digger is your ticket. It is made up of steel with a 48-inch maximum drilling depth. This 72″ Best Post Hole Digger could fit any of my standard tractor PTO. The 4 Hole adjustments for the boom allowed me to easily find the perfect position for digging narrow holes up to 6-inch, 9-inch, or 12-inch.

I controlled how deep I wanted to dig holes with four-hole adjustments for boom. The control rod also helped me keep the sharp end of the digger where I wanted it to be. This digger also came with a heavy-duty gearbox and a heavy-duty PTO driveline. Because of this reason, I am sure about one thing: this 3-point post-hole digger is built to last through years of regular use.

Apart from durability, this heavy-duty gearbox with a heavy-duty PTO driveline was the reason my job was done efficiently and quickly, without slowing down or getting stuck in the mud like other less durable products would have. One thing that disappointed me here was that this tool didn’t come with an extension. Even though I had many at home, I still wished they were included.

I also liked how this digger includes two removable legs for easy storage when not in use. Plus, a driveshaft cradle kept everything organized and within reach until working on my next project!

Pros
  • Driveshaft cradle
  • Heavy-duty gearbox
  • Easy to assemble
Cons
  • Extension not included

2. AGKNX 3-Point Post Hole Digger

Best High End
Agknx 3-point post hole digger

⭐⭐⭐⭐½

“Assembly was straightforward if you simply ignore the ridiculous instructions that come with it. And all the hardware was included. I used it yesterday to drill 7 holes with the 4-foot-long 12-inch bit and it did a very job on hard clay/sand soil. I have a 45hp tractor. At times it would screw into the ground and suck the tractor down, but after a little experience, I was able to control that. I would give it 5 stars but no option to buy legs for a stand and the instructions are really really bad.”
R Beeson Texas

If you’re looking for a tool that can help you dig post holes quickly and easily, look no further than the imported AGKNX 3-Point Post Hole Digger. This is one of the Best Post Hole Diggers for rocky soil, carrying all the features you’ll need to finish the job.

The AGKNX 3-Point Post Hole Digger is made of steel with a 48″ length. It features a durable driveline and rust-resistant powder coat finish that will stand up to years of use in any climate. It came equipped with a quick connection to 6 splines PTO. Because of this, I could attach it to my tractor seat for a safe, comfortable operation. And as it had a standard duty rating, I found this tool is perfect for anyone who wants an efficient way to dig post holes in their yard or garden!

A great feature of this product for me was its three-position adjustment: I used it for digging holes for fence posts, rails, and gate posts. And trust me, I had no single issue to report all this time. It is one of the best high-end post-hole diggers on the market, but the results are worth every penny.

The top link pin diameter is 1″, and the lift arm pin diameter is 7/8″. This AGKNX 3-Point Post Hole Digger also included a top link bushing for pin installation. Due to this, I could have it installed on my tractor and the skid steer machine.

Pros
  • Suitable for bigger tasks
  • Heavy duty post hole digger
  • Sturdy construction
  • Rust-resistant powder coat finish
Cons
  • None

3. Truper CA-38F Hercules Pattern Fbg Post Hole Digger

Best Budget For Rocky Soil
Truper ca-38f hercules pattern fbg post hole digger

⭐⭐⭐⭐½

“The fiberglass handles mean they won’t rot like wooden handles do. I didn’t notice any significant increase in weight, and they worked very well, even in hard clay soil. Highly Recommend!”
Michael B

When you’re ready to dig a hole for your fence post, you need a tool that can get the job done. That’s where this Hercules Pattern Fbg Post Hole Digger comes in, and also it is one of the best budget post hole diggers for rocky soil.

I have used a lot of manual post-hole diggers before, and I know how important it is to have a sturdy grip that makes digging easier. The black head of this post-hole digger is made from steel, and its total length is 59.2″.
My favorite thing about this post hole digger is its fiberglass handles. And because of this, they did not crack or break even under extreme pressure and rough times.

The blades on this tool were made from tempered steel. I used it for digging holes for my fence where the soil was rocky, and the blades didn’t bend or snap as other brands might do during use. Another thing that I noticed here was that It also features a black epoxy powder paint finish. As a result, I hope it will last longer than other models, making it the Best Post Hole Digger available today.

I liked how this tool is super compact. I didn’t have to worry about how I would carry it over the location because it was a breeze. Because of its compact size, I could also use it in super-tight spaces without getting worried.
But even if the tool was compact, that didn’t mean it was light in weight. I found it a little heavy. Whether it’s your home or business property, having the ability to dig holes quickly and efficiently will make your life easier with this one.

Pros
  • Suitable for heavy clay soils
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Some people find it heavy

4. DR Power Equipment 414741 3 Point Hitch Post Hole Digger

Best Powerful
Dr power equipment 414741 3 point hitch post hole digger

⭐⭐⭐½

“No install instructions were included even though it comes with a compartment for the manual… was super easy to put together and so far have drilled 20+ holes no problem”
Farmer Mike

Say hello to the DR Power Equipment 3-point post-holer. It drills holes almost as quickly as you can drive your tractor between sites. This was the Best Post Hole Digger for rocky soil, with a heavy-duty cast-iron gearbox made up of high-strength steel tubing. The tractor’s 3-Point Hitch hydraulics made it easier for me to connect the auger to my tractor. And due to this, I could get to work without any hassle.

I am very particular about power because I like completing my work quickly. And because this tool falls in the Category 1 or 2 Tractor from 20HP to 45HP, I got more than enough power for any job! Because of its impressive power, I consider it the most powerful post-hole digger.

6 best post hole diggers for rocky soil
Digging was pretty smooth with post hole digger credits: kylenybs098

The drilling process was smooth and steady for me, thanks to the 3:1 cast-iron gearbox that lowered the auger speed to 540 RPM. It also includes a PTO shaft with 540 RPM speed and a 6-spline, quick-release tractor yoke. Even though the PTO shafts didn’t have extended shear bolts, I still would say that isn’t a major problem to be concerned about.

Pros
  • Easy to assemble
  • Ideal for long fence lines
  • It is suitable for even the toughest soils
Cons
  • The PTO shaft has short sheer bolts

5. Razor-Back Post Hole Digger

Best For Beginners
Razor-back post hole digger

⭐⭐⭐⭐½

“Well built. It is a heavy tool but that is key when driving it into the ground. Digging post holes is work and razor-back design helps get the job done.”
Jensen in TN

The Razor-Back Post Hole Digger model 78006 is a high-quality piece of equipment. And for my fellows just getting started in gardening, I would suggest going for this tool as it is one of the best post-hole diggers for beginners.
It’s made from high-carbon steel, so this tool was the strongest and was enough to dig through hard soil and clay and collect even more dirt than other models. Plus, the six-inch point spread helped me get into the ground quickly and finish the job!

It didn’t come with a ruler printed on the handles, but I guess that wasn’t a huge issue for me as I didn’t need one while using this tool for digging. The size is 59.625in. H x 6.25in. W x 6.25in. D. Before digging, I measured out the holes. It worked well for me.

This digger weighed just 10.44 lb. I was glad that this tool was lightweight and had no strain on my back while moving it around long distances. And if you are someone like me who is a huge fan of weightless gardening tools, this is the Best Post Hole Digger for you!

Additionally, the strength of the tool mattered the most; thankfully, this tool had everything I could ever wish for. This strength is due to its amazingly strong and sturdy 48 in. fiberglass Hercules pattern and two pc riveted steel blades with a beveled digging edge. Even though this post-hole digger provides some huge space to dig in, I still believe it might be insufficient for bigger digs. So be wary about how much bigger digs you want, and then decide on the post-hole digger you want to purchase.

.

Pros
  • Fiberglass handles for durability
  • Beveled blades made of high carbon steel
  • Comfortable cushion grips
Cons
  • Not enough for bigger digs

6. Razor-Back 78007 Hercules Pattern Post Hole Digger

Overall Best For Professional Use
Razor-back 78007 hercules pattern post hole digger

⭐⭐⭐⭐½

“This is a good heavy-duty post hole digger. Reminds me of the one my grandpa had me use when I was a kid. I did not want lightweight, I wanted the real deal, and this delivers.”
Keith Johnson

The tubular-shaped Razor-Back 78007 Hercules Pattern Post Hole Digger is a must-have for homeowners and professionals.

Its high carbon steel blades and strong fiberglass handles ease it can handle heavy-duty digging jobs. In the Hercules pattern, two-piece riveted steel blades have beveled edges to dig through the toughest clay and dirt.

The six-inch point spread helps you collect more dirt and clay than other post-hole diggers on the market, making it ideal for large jobs like landscaping or fence installation. With its cushioned grip handles, this digger is comfortable to use and easy to maneuver, even if you’re wearing gloves.

This tool does not have a ruler printed on the handles, but a ruler is printed on the blade that can measure distances up to 18 ft. I would like to highlight here that this is the overall best post-hole digger for professional use, suitable for heavy-duty purposes. And due to this, it requires some high-end skills to operate. So if you are a beginner, I suggest you guys look at my previous pick Razor-Back Post Hole Digger.

Pros
  • A durable all-steel construction
  • Welded blades for effective use
  • Well-built and cushioned grip handles for comfort
Cons
  • Heavy for non-professionals

Buying guide: An Ultimate Guide to The Best Post Hole Digger

When choosing the best post-hole digger for rocky soil, you must first decide what type of soil you will be digging into. If the ground is hard and rocky, you will want a more powerful tool. If it’s soft and sandy, then a lighter-duty model may suffice. Here are some handy tips that helped me to decide which post-hole digger I must go for.

Type of Soil Will You be Digging

The first thing you need to consider when choosing a post-hole digger is what type of soil you will dig into. If you live in an area with sandy, rocky, or hard-packed soil, you’ll want to get a more durable and powerful tool. On the other hand, a less powerful model will work if you live in an area with looser soil. Because I had severe rocky terrain in my yard, I wanted to go for a high-powered machine.

Type of Digging Projects

In most cases, there are two types of digging projects that people need help with around their homes: digging holes for fence posts and digging holes for planting trees and shrubs. Both types of projects require different types of tools because each has unique requirements.

Some post-hole diggers are designed specifically for certain types of projects, such as building fences or gardens, while others can do both jobs equally well. If there is no specific need for a particular tool, it is better to get a multipurpose one instead because it will save money in the long run. I wanted to install a fence around my garden and have some trees, too, so I opted for a multipurpose post-hole digger.

Manually-operated Post Hole Diggers

Manually-operated post hole diggers are usually made of metal and come in several shapes and sizes. They are designed to be used by hand, so they don’t require any electricity or power source to work properly. The handles can be made from wood or plastic, depending on how much money you want to spend on your tool.

For example, wood handles tend to be heavier than plastic ones since they are harder for manufacturers to mold into shape using machinery. However, because they don’t have the same brittle characteristics as their plastic counterparts, these handles last longer than those made of plastic.

Fiberglass Ergonomically Designed Handles

These types of handles are designed with ergonomic features that make them more comfortable to use than other types of handles. They often feature rubber grips or grips made from mesh materials that will help absorb some of the shocks from pushing down into hard soil or clay, which can make working for long periods much easier on your hands and wrists than using other types of handles without these features built-in would be able to do. These handles are usually available in both manual and electric versions.

Depth Capacity

Depth capacity is another important consideration when choosing the best post-hole digger for your needs. Suppose you plan on digging holes deeper than four feet. In that case, you may want to consider buying two different models – one with a smaller depth capacity and another with a larger depth capacity so that you can choose both shallow and deep holes.

Weight

The weight of your post-hole digger is an important consideration. You will want a light enough tool to carry around but strong enough to dig through the ground without causing strain on your body. Post-hole diggers come in different sizes and weights, so it is important to choose one that fits your strength level and how much you plan on using it.

Handles

The handles on your post-hole digger should be ergonomically shaped to fit comfortably in your hands while you work. They should also be made of durable materials that don’t break or crack when used repeatedly over time. If possible, look for models with foam grips that help reduce fatigue when using them for long periods.

How I Tested The Products?

Because the marketplace has hundreds of post-hole diggers available, I had a tough time choosing the best post-hole digger for my rocky soil. It is best to always test and try every product before purchasing it. Because every person has different terrain, soil, and conditions on their land, I wasn’t sure if something that worked well for my friend would work the same for me.

So obviously, my next step was to test every post-hole digger that I found the best. I thank my friends and colleagues who allowed me to borrow their tools to test them out so I could make a secure purchase. Meanwhile, I also purchased a few post-hole diggers for testing them out because I couldn’t borrow them from nearby.

So, the test and trial process was simple for me. I tried using all the picks mentioned here in my yard, where I had rocky terrain. My yard has a peculiar texture of soil; in one place, it is extremely rocky; at another point, it is a mixture of rock and mud; and at a distant point, it is all muddy. So I wasn’t certain what would work best for me.
First, I tried the rocky surface, then the muddy and rocky area, and lastly, the soft muddy corner. I checked the hole’s measurement and how swiftly the blades could get through the work.

Another important thing I had a check on was whether the tool was portable or not or if it was heavy to move from one place to another. I also wanted to see if a particular tool was easy to assemble and disassemble. Lastly, I wanted the handles to be comfortable so I don’t end up with sore hands. So, I used the tools for extensive periods to see whether they were comfy to get hold of or not.

6 best post hole diggers for rocky soil
Winter squash are being interplanted with beets (credits:vegetableacademy)
6 best post hole diggers for rocky soil
Winter squash are being interplanted with beets (credits:vegetableacademy)

Conclusion

An accurate, durable, and functional post-hole digger will save you time and money. A post-hole digger is an excellent choice for soft or sandy soil. Be sure to consider how much you will use the tool, what kind of soil you will be working with, and how many holes you need to dig. If you are still not sure about which one to go for, let me share my personal favorites with you:

Best Buy Pick: CountyLine 602377 3-Point Post Hole Digger

Best Budget Pick: Truper CA-38F Hercules Pattern Fbg Post Hole Digger

Best Pick for Beginners: Razor-Back Post Hole Digger

Additionally, I would advise everyone to go for an electrically powered post-hole digger if they want an alternative to a manual post-hole digger. You can compare several different post-hole diggers before making a purchase. Finding the right tool for the job may take trial and error, but it should be worth it when you have the right tool for your project. A healthy lawn starts with healthy soil, so if you want to know more about soil, here you go.

Alice belock

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