Jan 2, 2011 at 1:09 pm #1679863Dale WambaughBPL Member
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
That's why God gave us rocks! Or the brains to get out of harm's way. Anything with pointy things on it's head and sharp hooves is a threat. Far more campers are injured by deer than predators. It's the WILD part in "wildlife."
I like to carry a pocket knife, but I'm not about to take on wildlife with it, even if I had the time. I've read all kinds of posts on survival threads concerning the possibility of taking on a bear or cougar with a knife. Good luck.
Knives are just tools, like spoons or scissors or potty trowels. You see a need for them within you weight budget or you don't. Some carry two band-aids and some tape and call it a first aid kit; other may have a more complex kit. It's the same difference between carrying a single edge razor blade or a 3oz folder. Obviously, no hiker needs a 12" Rambo Special.Jan 5, 2011 at 1:19 pm #1680765spelt with a tBPL Member
@speltLocale: Rangeley, ME
I think you either are used to using a knife or not. If you are, a knife is part of your SOP for any number of daily activities. If you're not, you're used to doing those same activities some other, knife-less way. A knife to me meets the literal definition of a utility item: I take it to use. For someone else it might be a luxury, or just superfluous. Is a knife strictly necessary? I would say no (though some sort of edged tool ought to be–razor blades seem to be the UL choice?), but neither would I encourage someone to ditch their knife unless it was clear they were treating it like dead weight instead of as a tool.Nov 26, 2020 at 12:03 pm #3685902David KBPL Member
This. All the way. I live with a knife on me and while I know that I can figure out how to accomplish most things without one (either urban or back country), the fact is it makes everything easier. It is one of the two most critical and most used inventions in the development of human history. Almost everything we have accomplished as humans is only possible because through the use of a blade or fire (or both).
I agree that if you have a blade along you will find more ways to use it than if you didn’t have it, however it is also likely to not have one along and find the few things where you end up thinking. “I really wish I had a knife.”
With a 4 inch, 3 oz fixed blade I can accomplish anything from slicing food to building an entire camp. Add an SAK (awl and saw) onto that and I’m completely set for anything life throws my way. And I know that my CPM 3V blade will stay sharp and strong the entire time, unlike a razor or scalpel blade which works for a few cuts then dulls to the point of being dangerous.Nov 26, 2020 at 12:24 pm #3685904KatttBPL Member
Another good thread resurrected and I could not agree more on the utility of a blade. Daily.Nov 27, 2020 at 6:17 am #3686013Jeff YBPL Member
I’ve tried to slim my knife down to be “ultralight”. It was hard for me. I like knives, and carry one daily. I even bought the ultralight benchmade bugout just for hiking, then convinced myself to keep it lightweight by leaving it at home in favor of the smaller Victorinox. I found the victorinox to be a pain to hold and cut with, and went back to carrying the Benchmade. Good thread!Nov 27, 2020 at 7:22 am #3686015Bob KernerBPL Member
Knife = tool
I carry the small SAK because it’s LW but honesty it can barely cut thru a piece of salami the blade is so small. Maybe you can cut a piece of cordage or do a minor repair. I’ve never needed tweezers, maybe the toothpick once to pry apart a tight knot. I carry floss for my teeth! Anything I ‘d need scissors for could be cut with a blade in a pinch ( bandages for example). It’s a tiny collection of barely adequate tools but it’s UL Doctrine not to carry a proper knife. Same doctrine that specifies that a Nalgene bottle is too heavy and takes too much space ( this one I mostly agree/ comply with).
I believe the knife is one of those items that unjustly distinguishes UL from Bushcrafter, at least that’s the impression I get from various hiking and camping forums.
Like others I have a knife on me or within arms reach every day. Yet when I pull on my pack, it’s the miniSAK that saves what…..an ounce or two over a more useful small folder? I’ve just convinced myself to be courageous and start carrying my small Benchmade folder again!Nov 27, 2020 at 7:45 am #3686019DanBPL Member
Slightly OT, but here was a day that I was very happy to have a multi-tool with me.Nov 28, 2020 at 12:36 am #3686126Dale WambaughBPL Member
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
I carry a 3” lock blade pocket knife every day and it goes on the trail too. It’s just a tool.
Pocket knives are a cultural thing. All the men in my family and even a few of the women carry pocket knives. No Rambo stuff, just basic folders. I have my grandfathers old slip joint in a treasure box on my desk.Nov 28, 2020 at 11:20 am #3686162Todd TBPL Member
@texasbbLocale: Pacific Northwest
Unless I’m on an airplane, I have my little folding Gerber Ultralight LST with me. 2″ blade, about 4.5″ total length, 0.6 oz. I use it far more often in the civilized world–at least once or twice a day on average I guess–than when hiking. I can’t remember the last time I needed it while backpacking, but it happens now and then.Nov 28, 2020 at 4:16 pm #3686190Crystal GBPL Member
My dad passed away a few years ago and when it became clear my daughter (now 15) was going to backpack with me, I passed his Buck pocket knife on to her. She loves that it was Pop-Pop’s knife, carries it religiously on trips, and uses it mostly to whittle marshmallow sticks. I love that it has a really good locking mechanism. Funny enough, after carrying a lightweight Gerber for years and rarely using it, I am considering taking a pair of ultralight scissors (like cuticle scissors) instead. I find most of the time I am cutting tape, bandages, and toenails (and occasionally cord) and that would work better for me. But it is so hard to give up my knife.Nov 28, 2020 at 5:27 pm #3686199DanBPL Member
I just can’t help feeling that this thread would be 100x more enjoyable if I could see the knives people were talking about. Oh, how I wish the forum allowed photos. ;-)Nov 28, 2020 at 9:13 pm #3686247Todd TBPL Member
@texasbbLocale: Pacific Northwest
nmNov 29, 2020 at 12:27 pm #3686314Anthony HBPL Member
My MTK Genesis II Neck Knife Goes on every trip I’m on. Very sharp and durable and filets a fish like no bodies business plus any other task I need it for.Nov 30, 2020 at 1:13 pm #3686512Andre MBPL Member
I have an older micarta Al Mar ultralight eagle on the way. Probably the lightest weight 4” blade folder and a decent locking mechanism on the market. Nothing really comes close to the efficiency if the design and the high level of fit and finish. Its a shame theyre discontinued and expensive.Dec 5, 2020 at 10:17 am #3687376Joshua BBPL Member
I have a few “neck” knives that I rotate on trips. I don’t like to wear them as neck knives though (personal preference), just prefer to have them handy via pocket, clipped in waistband via Ulticlip, or fanny pack. Basic requirements are fixed blade, plain edge, full tang, 2.5″ – 3″ blade, and kydex sheath. The Brisa/Enzo Necker and Bobtail w/kydex sheaths have been recent favorites due to the comfortable handles. Paring knife sized blades that are fully capable of much bigger tasks when needed. The White River Backpacker pro is also an excellent blade.
I agree with others here who either use knives as part of their everyday life or who appreciate non-petroleum based fire making – a capable little knife is an invaluable tool in the backcountry.Dec 12, 2020 at 9:52 pm #3688650Diane “Piper” SoiniBPL Member
@sbhikesLocale: Santa Barbara
My knife really just keeps my tweezers, nail file and scissors safe.Dec 15, 2020 at 12:10 am #3689087KarenBPL Member
Oh that poor doggy! I hope he has learned his lesson; some never do, and some want revenge. Antibiotics are sometimes needed…been through this too. Yeah, a multi tool or pliers is the only thing that works.
Backpacking sans dog, I have a tiny knife, big enough to slice fruit or cheese only. Just haven’t needed anything larger.
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