A Good Survival Knife The Most Important Survival Tool You Can Have
A lot of people are uncomfortable with the idea of bringing a survival knife around, even in the wilderness. It appears big, rough and intimidating as the serrated teeth imply violence, and just might bite you if you don’t carry it around properly.
In an environment that can turn hostile such as the woods or in the event of a natural calamity, you need to be at peace with the idea or carrying a weapon around.
Besides an attack and defense tool, survival knives are also used for basic activities such as sawing wood, cutting through lush vegetation and leaving markings of your trail. If it is all you have left in the wilderness, you can accomplish all the simple and complex tasks needed to survive if you have the skills.
Here are several reasons why you should get a good survival knife:
1) To build a shelter.
If you need to build a shelter from scratch, a survival knife can help you gather the materials from your local environment. You can make a debris nest to lie in by collecting pine nettles, leaves, moss and other soft bedding materials. Build cover against the rain by making a ridgepole across tree branches and shaping these, then adding leaves and stronger material.
2) To light a fire.
A survival knife can help you gather tinder and firewood as you chop down branches and twigs to gather. It can also help you design a bow drill or other tools needed in starting a fire.
3) To produce food.
You cannot sustain the needed energy for survival without food. A survival knife can help in taking down animals and cutting up their parts for meat. It is also indispensable in making snares and traps to catch small game. If you can attach it to the end of a long and sturdy branch, you have a spear that can reach tall places for fruit and branches as well as spearfishing.
4) To protect yourself against predators.
In the event of an attack, you can defend yourself with enough determination and a survival knife. You might even be able to wound and scare off your attacker. A knife may be the only thing that stands between certain death and a small chance of survival.
Imagine the possible scenarios you will be in once you’re deep in the woods and match these with your requirements for a survival knife.
Some considerations of a good survival knife are:
1) Blade shape.
How large or durable does it have to be if you are going to cut through tough bark or strike down a predator? Some blades are thin enough to slice through grasses and leaves while others are thick enough to cut through tree trunks.
2) Blade steel.
With ceramic and carbon-treated steel available, your choice will depend on its utility. A harder knife can hold an edge better but if it is too hard it will not be as tough and may break if it falls.
3) Serrated edge.
You will have to cut through various objects in the wilderness and your survival knife better have teeth that don’t turn brittle. A sharply serrated edge can cut through wood, cord and even bone efficiently and do more damage to a predator, increasing your chances of surviving an attack.
You will need a knife that extends as one piece of steel from hilt to tip, and this is also known as a full tang. This assures that the material of the knife is solid enough to not break if it hits the ground from a fall. Pocket knives and switchblades can break easily, while knives with a full tang offer enough durability to last longer.
It takes more than bravado to handle a survival knife, even if you feel more manly and rugged keeping it around in your holster. Go beyond waving it around and learn the ins and outs of your particular knife and you will begin to understand it has far more uses and benefits than those listed above. If all you have out there is a knife, it can get you everything else that you need to live for the unpredictable days ahead.
Next in this survival series we investigate the Top 10 Tools And Equipment For Successful Survival In The Wilderness