I finished reading the latest issue of Blade Magazine with the two articles about the best Bushcraft knife and the choice of Scandi or Convex Ground blades. After reading both articles it made me take a moment to think about the Bushcraft knife wonderland that’s out their today. The choices and options are incredible.
When I really got into hunting, fishing and camping 50+ years ago the choices were really limited. As I recall, most fixed blade knives followed a more traditional clip point or skinner style of blade. George W Sears had blessed us with his Muk, but the modern age of Bushcraft was still in the offing. We hadn’t really seen the full influence of Bob Loveless yet and the Randall’s were a kids dream.
Skip ahead a few decades and how the world has changed. We saw the Rambo ultimate do anything knives from Buck, Gerber and others. And of course Crocodile Dundee brought us the quintessential ‘mega’ knife. Then, somewhere along the line we settled into the more reasonably sized ‘bush knives’ with fellas like Bear Grylls. I’m skipping over a lot of history here but you get the idea.
Fixed blades have always been a bit more interesting to me the folders. Over the years I’ve wasted many an hour thinking about the ultimate knife if I could only have one. As close as I’ve been able to narrow it down, it would most likely be a fixed blade. No moving parts. Lots of different carry options. Rather have too much blade then not enough, etc, etc.
There’s a little Walter Mitty in me that gives me the ability to try to mentally create situations where I would need a knife to survive. Stranded in the jungle, the arctic, on the ocean, locked in a deserted warehouse or maybe just lost in the Northwoods. Okay, I’ll acknowledge I may have some issues. But, be honest, I think most of us have to admit we’ve gone through similar mental exercises.
The wonderful thing is that our choices today are incredible. Everything from blade styles, grinds, material, thickness, handle sizes, shapes, you name it. There are great choices under $100 and the sky’s the limit for high end knives. A major problem for me is the customer that asks what’s the best knife to buy.
Hmmmm… what would I want for a knife if I were lost in the woods. The sun is setting and I’ve got a small fire lit. I’m cleaning a couple of trout for my supper when I hear a deep grunt. I turn around to see a huge griz’ heading straight for me. In a flash he’s tearing across the opening in the woods and all I’ve got is my 2 3/4″ skinner…. Wait a minute. I forgot that the discussion about the best survival gun to carry with you. Never mind. I’ll be okay.