How do I choose a bushcraft knife?
Bushcraft is one of the most popular outdoor activities today. Going out into the woods with a minimal amount of gear to become one with nature. Bushcraft is so much more than building a fire: it is a way of life. It is a philosophy. A way in which you can test your own ingenuity and work creatively. Bushcraft is impossible without a knife. However, there are so many bushcraft knives that it can become difficult to make the right choice. For that reason we would love to tell you more about how you choose a bushcraft knife.
What do you use a bushcraft knife for?
There are four different tasks for which you can use a bushcraft knife:
- Wood work
- Preparing food
- Building a fire
We are the first to admit that most of these tasks are often carried out with the same knife, and in most cases that is perfectly fine. There are, however, different points of gravity in the design of the knife that could make it better suited for other bushcraft activities.
Bushcraft knife for wood work
Wood work, also called wood craft, is using wood to make shelter and tools. Making your own traps and cutting spoons out of wood, for instance. For this task it is important to choose a knife that has been enhanced with an ergonomic handle that has many curves. A flat, high handle can, after all, become irritating if you use it for a longer period of time. It is also important to know that the edge is strong. A scandi grind is preferred by wood workers because of its solidity. The scandi-grind can also easily be sharpened. Some knives that stand out for wood craft are:
Bushcraft knives for survival tasks
Choosing a good bushcraft knife for survival tasks is very similar to choosing a regular survival knife. We already talked a little bit about it in the topic about how to choose a survival knife. The most important aspect is choosing a knife that is full-tang. This means that the thickness of the blade runs completely through the handle. This is a very strong construction that enables you to split wood. A couple of examples of bushcraft knives perfect for survival tasks are:
Bushcraft knives to gather and prepare food
To gather and prepare food a thinner knife is a little more practical. After all, it will easier cut through different vegetables. It is also a good idea to not bring the smallest knife from the collection. It could, after all, be practical to have a slightly longer knife with you to filet fish, for instance. We also recommend you use a knife that can easily be cleaned. So without strange corners or edges in which food can get stuck. A couple of great choices are:
Bushcraft knife to build a fire
When people think of bushcraft they often think of building fires. For it you will need a knife with a strong spine to make sure you can use a firesteel, and a solid construction to make sure you can split kindle. Our favourite knives to build a fire are:
Bushcraft pocket knives: folding knives for bushcraft enthusiasts
Bushcraft is, in general, the domain of fixed knives. The reliability and solidity of a fixed knife is appreciated when your fingers are at stake. Nevertheless there are also pocket knives you can easily use for wood work and preparing food. Absolutely not the right option if you want to split wood, but great for lighter wood work. A couple of great examples are:
- Cold Steel Finn Wolf 20NPF
- TOPS Fieldcraft Folder bushcraft pocket knife FCF-01, Leo Espinoza design
- Enzo Borka 90 - N690 Scandi - Green Micarta-2850
Our top 3 bushcraft knives
To conclude we would love to share the top 3 bushcraft knives. Based on the knives we love to use at Knivesandtools. Knives we would take with us into the woods every single time.
1. Mora Garberg Carbon
The Mora Garberg made from stainless steel was already a very popular choice, but this version made from carbon steel adds just that little bit extra because you can easily sharpen it and it won’t break as easily. The Garberg excels when it comes to making fire: you rarely come across a knife with such a sharp spine to use a firesteel. An amazing bushcraft knife for an amazing price.
2. Casström Lars Fält Knife
We are big fans of survival expert Lars Fält. This Swede has established the survival school of the Swedish army and wrote 8 books about how he survived in the wild. If someone knows how a knife should work it is Fält. His Casström Lars Fält Knife is, as a result, a winner because of its versatility.
3. EnZo Trapper 95
The EnZo Trapper 95 is another all-rounder. Woodcraft, building fires, preparing food, survival skills: it can do it all. Even as a hunting knife it will prove its worth. We are definitely in love with the stunning micarta. It is incredibly strong and feels great in hand. The N690Co steel ensures that you barely have to worry about rust.
We, of course, know that there are many things many different people are looking for. So these knives are absolutely not the only ones out there that are good. This is only a small selection of the models we believe are great for the different purposes. The most important thing of bushcraft remains that you go out into the world, learn more about nature and enjoy being outside.