Updated May 22, 2021
When headed out on a hiking trip, there are several tools of essential gear to carry along to ensure you make the most of your hiking journey — varying from tents to axes and more. And while there’s a lot to think of as far as amenities go, it’s also a good idea to put together some helpful tools and gear in your backpack for safety and security.
A solid hiking knife can be a backpacker’s best friend. A quality knife or multi-tool are some of the most valuable items to bring on any outdoor adventure. You can use them to prepare meals, repair gear, start fires, and even protect your life in a backcountry crisis.
In this article, we’ve gathered the best hiking knives to bring on your next trek.
The absolute serrated fixed-blade knife for hiking and regular camping, the Gerber StrongArm exerts a partially-serrated, ceramic-coated 4.8″ full-tang 420HC steel blade. Balanced and designed to perform at 10.9 ounces, you can put the StrongArm to perform with everything from felling and shaving branches to readying the night’s campfire meal. Hailing from Portland, Oregon, Gerber’s StrongArm is developed in the USA.
Does anyone feel competent with just one means when they’re in the wild? The Leatherman Free K4 Multi-Tool holds its strength as a multi-functional knife tool. The best handy tool can be wielded as an alternative to your massive go-to hiking knives; the Free K4 provides eight tools in one. At 3.3″, the stainless steel 420HC knife is solid and sharp, and its ergonomically perfected aluminum body is safe to mold nicely in your hand. What else? An excellent pry tool, awl, bottle opener, and several screwdrivers that will alleviate sudden headaches.
Handcrafted in Norway, the Helle Utvaer is an exceptionally sharp full-tang. This fixed-blade knife sizes up with a 4.0″ Sandvik 12C27 stainless steel blade. Composed with an eye for handsome-yet-serious features, the Utvaer 4.7″ curled birch wood handles contours sufficiently to the hand. It is a must-have survival tool for everything from bushcraft to cleaning fish and wilderness. Besides, this Nordic knife is designed to combat even the grittiest of hiking and camping tasks with style.
In Stock at Amazon from $224
The stylish and elegant Benchmade North Fork Knife is one of the most promising foldable hunting and hiking knives available in the market. It comes with a 2.97″ CPM-S30V stainless steel drop-point knife blade and weighs up to 3.2 ounces. Elegantly crafted for both right and left-handed backpackers, the knife’s double thumb-stud opener settles within a stabilized wood handle that is created to withstand nature’s harshest elements. With the North Fork, all meals are done with ease – if you’re up for the catching.
Be ready to go up against the elements in certainty with the UST Full Tang ParaKnife FS 4.0. Inch Serrated knife. The best all-purpose hiking knife won’t crack the bank; the ParaKnife FS 4.0 slivers its way to the top with a 4″ rust-resistant serrated blade. Its grip is wrapped in 6′ of addition paracord so that you can grasp assuredly for a smooth cut. Want to start a fire in a pinch? The powerful combined magnesium fire starter has you covered.
In Stock at Amazon from $20
Handsomely created and put in a beechwood grip, the Opinel No. 8 blade is convenient and handy and shines with a 12C27 Sandvik steel blade. It is undoubtedly one of the promising lightweight everyday carry hiking blades; the anti-corrosive knife stands up to even the roughest of tasks, whether that’s slashing through stiff rope or survival nutriment containers. If you’re willing to share the love, the No. 8 is a beautifully crafted blade that you’d like to pass down or gift to a family member or close friend.
In Stock Amazon from $18
Essential Uses of Hiking Knives
Anyone who has followed survivor TV shows (Alone, anyone?) probably has seen a few dramatic use cases of a knife or multi-tool. We get it though, as long as you’re safe, it’s fun to try new things in the great outdoors. Your hiking knife will be necessary for safety, security, and an overall better experience.
- The most significant use of a hiking knife is cutting and scraping wood to assemble campfires. You can quickly light sparks by hitting a steel or ferrocerium rod across your knife’s rim.
- The second most important use is a hike and camp cooking knife for making meals. If you’re going out into the outdoors for hunting or fishing, then you’ll need a knife to field dress game or slice fish.
When you’re up against natural elements, you’re only as powerful as the instruments in your armory, and for this task in your complex, you can securely count on a dependable hiking knife to serve as hard as you do. Bushcrafting? No trouble. Scaling fish and commencing a fire for meals? Accomplished. When it comes to getting the best hiking knife, keep in mind the kind of activities and challenges you expect to rise against.
More than anything, your hiking knife must feel comfortable and safe in your hands. But we’re not opposed to good looks.
Whether it’s for a day trip or you’ve planned for a survival hiking trip, grab a hiking knife for your next adventure.
Jeremy Alderman is an outdoor enthusiast in Scottsdale, Arizona. He writes on all things camping, hiking, outdoor sports, and travel. His weekends are often filled exploring the desert with his wife Madison and their 3-year-old German Shepherd rescue, Grace. His favorite spot in all of North America is the Oregon Coast.