I think that everyone agrees that a hunting knife is a very personal thing for each hunter. Some have just one favourite knife, but others prefer to have few more (like 20-30): one for different days or different tasks.
Nowadays there is way too much choice for hunting gear, especially knives. I must admit, however, that with the availability of modern steel and metals, there are some amazing blades out there.
Do you need a hunting knife for each task?
Since I began hunting in the UK, I’ve gathered about 25 knives and there was a reason behind each and every purchase. There was a time in the industry when the designs targeted separate tasks like: skinning, filleting, field work (outside carcass work), deboning and butchering.
Now we have a very clear line between butchering and the “rest” – there are more and more knives coming on to the market that cope with any task, or multitool sets which can be really versatile.
Should you choose a multi-function knife?
I might upset a few people by saying that now we are talking about “the ultimate” knife, and there are also few of those now on the market.
A good handle, a blade of medium length and width, with a slight curve, good steel which can be easily sharpened and a good, solid, preferably plastic (for easier cleaning) sheath. A lot of knives fall under this description, from big name brands, but in reality, very few can keep up with the semi-professional or professional day to day use.
Don’t get me wrong, I am a big believer in “any knife can do the job” but only if it’s used 4-5 times per year: as soon as you need to work with this knife 2-3 times per week, the game changes.
Is it possible to be satisfied with only one knife?
Most of us would have a knife for the specific animal or bird we are going to use it on, like: deer, rabbits, pigeon, duck, beaver or moose. But, a good or, should I say, a GREAT knife can happily work on any carcass at any time, and most importantly it should be comfortable to work with.
I can’t possibly choose the knife I would love to have that would cover all my needs, but I’ll give it my best “shot” by buying as many as I can, especially from the Browning collection, as they do look like great knives, and some of them are already calling out to me.
An old hunter said to me once: “The knife shouldn’t complete the man: the man should complete the knife…”
How many knives do you have?
What about Brownings?