Serious backpackers know the importance of having a solid knife as a companion on their backpacking trip and thus always go for the best backpacking knives. Whenever, such questions arise the easiest answer is always personal preference should guide your decision. What you plan to do with your backpacking knife on your camping or hiking trip would most definitely influence your knife choice.
We would be going through a list of some of the best knives for backpacking and hopefully, this should help you with your decision to get a carryon companion when going hiking or backpacking. Our backpacking knife reviews cover some of the sleekest single blade knives, multi-tools, neck knives, and other multipurpose backpacking knives every ardent backpacker should know about.
Surely, you’d know that backpackers get really attached to their knives, since the knives are used for so many activities while backpacking. A backpacking knife could come in handy when you need to cut out ropes, if you are out camping you could even use your knife to lift off food from the fire. Other uses of a backpacking knife include;
- Slicing through canned food
- The occasional slicing bread, cheese, pepperoni and spreading jam, peanut butter et al
- Can be used to sharpen wood which you’d use as spear for fishing
- You can also use your knife to fix spoilt gears
- You could probably use a shiny backpacking knife to fend off bears
- Some backpacking campers use theirs to start fire, so you could consider doing so too
- Surely for splitting logs and wood, and the list is endless!
The Top 10 Best Backpacking Knife Reviews
Here are a total of 10 of the best backpacking knives you should consider getting if you plan to snag a new carryon companion for your backpacking trips.
The US produced Ka-Bar full size USMC Knife was designed for the military during the World War 2 and so far gained a reputation for itself, becoming one of the choice knives of service men who carry it along as a preferred personal knife.
The knife is made with a powerful 1095 Cro-van steel. Unlike stainless steel, this steel can be sharpened easily on just any rock surface and producing decent result, so you don’t have to stress yourself finding a great stone or a professionally built sharpening stone.
The sheath of the Ka-Bar USMC knife is another impressive tidbit. Manufactured in Mexico, the leather sheaths are some of the best available in the world. The knife steel has been duly treated and can be saved from rusting by coating with oil before storing away in the sheath. Also, the sheath can be made to glitter more and also turn water resistant by soaking in neat’s-foot oil or olive oil for around 24 hours.
- Made in US knife which has been tested and trusted by the military for over 70 years
- Mexico produced sheaths are made of genuine leather which are super durable
- Knife blade is made of Cro-van steel which is an impressive steel that can be sharpened on just about any surface unlike stainless steel.
- The knife is cost effective.
- The knife has a sturdy build with a finesse leather handle
- It’s a straight knife measuring 7”
- It uses the most famous fixed blade design in the world of knives.
- Leather sheath can be made water resistant by soaking in olive oil
- The knife’s swedge no longer comes sharpened
- Also, the coating on the blade would come off with extreme use.
The Gerber Bear Grylls is one heck of a knife. A rather heavy knife for its frame, this serrated knife combines the hacking prowess of a survival knife and an all in one tool kit of a backpacker.
The knife features emergency micro lanyard whistle, an integrated fire starter which is attached to the sheath (which should come in handy if you’d really like to start a quick fire not the boy’s scout’s approach) as well as an integrated diamond sharpener. It sports a nice looking tactical sheath for storage when not in use.
The Gerber Bear Grylls measures about 10-inches and weighs roughly 7 pounds making it a moderately heavy backpacking knife.
- The Gerber Bear Grylls is made by a reputable outdoor equipments firm with several years of active manufacturing.
- This petite looking knife is highly durable and sturdily made
- Multipurpose functions with a sheath with built in fire starter, whistle and diamond sharpener.
- A serrated portion of the knife blades can be used to saw wood to make small equipments
- Comes with its own protective sheath for storing away the knife when not in use.
- Highly versatile knife can be used for camping, backpacking or daily hikes.
- The knife can be a bit heavy
- Reports of the knives pommel being secured with plastic and breaking off easily can be disturbing.
The Buck 0119 Special fixed blade is an iteration from Buck knives, a USA based company known for producing high quality knives.
This all round utility fixed blade knife could make your backpacking trip seamless and less stressful especially if you plan to camp and make shelter or if you plan to hike is forest regions.
The knife is effectively built for taking on such routine activities you’d pass through in hikes and camp grounds like cutting trees, chopping wood, splitting wood, carving and shavings and even lifting pots from open fire or making fire itself.
- With the Buck 0119 special fixed blade knife, you can’t go wrong on a hike thanks to its ultra sharp blades.
- The Buck 0119 measure around 6” in blade length (overall length is 10.5” which includes the handle) and the blades are built with 420HC steel which gives it a mammoth strength and superb edge retention.
- The Buck 0119 special knife has a fixed edge which is ideal for cutting in detail while the thin tip of the blade is great for cutting around tightly packed areas.
- The knife is American made by a reputable company.
- Buck 0119 special fixed blade knife has a handle that is made of Cocobolo Dymond wood as well as a brass pommel
- The knife comes with Buck’s forever warranty so you are assured of quality.
- The Buck 0119 knife comes with a genuine leather sheath for tucking away the knife when not in use as well as for a safer and secured transportation of the knife.
- There’s really nothing to hold against the Buck 0119 knife except if you feel at 0.8 pounds it’s bulky.
The Buck 110 Famous folding knife is another Buck knives product. A US based company with a high rating in outdoor knives production, the company aims at providing the highest quality products and the Buck 110 is one of such backpacking knife.
The knife has its blades from high quality stainless steel while its protective sheath is a top-grade leather fashioned piece.
Overall weight of the Buck 110 folding knife is around 0.7 pounds; the head/handle of the knife has the bulk of this weight while its blade takes up a small portion.
- You are assured of a high quality knife as Buck knives are a reputable company which has been producing high quality knives for over 100 years now.
- The crescent tip of the knife makes it the perfect tool for carving appropriate tasks and having a decent detailed job.
- The Buck 110 is a sturdily built folding knife with super sharp blade.
- Purchasing the Buck 110 gets you a genuine leather sheath
- The easy grip handle is made of brass bolsters and Dymond wood.
- The Buck 100 folding knife utilizes a lock-back design that is both safe for users and guarantees maximum strength.
- Probably a little weightier than recommended, no thanks to the Dymond wood and brass bolster handle.
This petite lightweight knife is manufactured in Sweden by Morakniv. The companion MG is best described as an all-in-one knife for lovers of outdoor activities.
The knife is made to comfortably sit in your hands with its high-friction grip handle that’s easy to hold. The blades are not so lengthy measuring just 4.1” and are made of 1095 carbon steel with a hardness of HRC 58/60.
The 1095 carbon steel blades of the Morakniv companion MG lets it be easily sharpened.
The overall functionality of the companion MG is limitless as it can be used for high impact activities like cutting wood and creating tinder. It can also be used for shaving and penciling logs for making spears et al.
The Morakniv companion MG carbon steel fixed blade knife comes with a military green sheath with a belt clip.
- The morakniv companion MG carbon steel knife is manufactured by a reputable company with several production years.
- The knife is made of 1095 carbon steel blade which can be easily sharpened on just about any surface.
- The knife has an easy grip handle which is comfortable to hold.
- It is also very lightweight
- The companion MG is very cost effective and easily one of the cheapest quality backpacking knife available on the market.
- Once not in use, can be stored in a military leather sheath provided.
- Very sharp blades can be used for shredding, cutting and penciling logs.
- Mora has little quality control put in place, so you might notice a few ill formed bumps on the edges but for its price point, it’s a nice deal.
If you are going backpacking and looking for an all-in-one tool that could serve you not just as a knife but a fire starter and several other important features like seatbelt cutter, glass breaker, then the BlizeTec survival knife is your best bet. This survival knife is backpackers and survival seekers most sort after piece of tech.
This is a multifunctional piece of gear with 5 diverse, yet powerful functions. The knife features such important features as an inbuilt LED flashlight for night hiking, a magnesium fire starter, a glass breaker, a seatbelt cutter, and finally the main purpose which is a super sharp stainless blade capable of locking.
While its pectoral of functionalities make it a must have survival tool, it’s also a great outdoor hiking and backpacking gear which should be very handy in any environment you find yourself. The knife has two parts of the blade – a serrated part for sawing bones or logs of wood and a fine straight steel part for shaving, cutting twigs, slicing meat and so on.
- If you ever get lost while on your backpacking journey, the added functionalities of the BlizeTec knife such as fire starter can be a live saver.
- The knife blade is made of stainless steel and its really sharp and an articulate shaver
- This multipurpose knife is sturdily built and made to last.
- The knife is lightweight even with all its powerful features
- Functions as a glass breaker
- Functions as a seatbelt cutter
- The full length of the knife (when open) is 8.5”, 5” when closed and the blades alone measure 3.5” all total weigh just 0.5 pounds making it a convenient carry about tool.
- This knife would come in very useful in case of emergency.
- The Blizetec blade has two parts, a serrated and straight part which is very effective.
- The look and feel of the BlizeTec survival knife is simply stunning aesthetically.
- It’s also very budget friendly and cost effective.
- The only supposedly down side of the BlizeTec survival knife is the fact that it could be a bit inconveniencing if you use it as a baton to split wood due to the presence of serrated blades
The SOG SEAL Pup fixed blade M37N-CP Knife is yet another unmatched military grade backpacking knife. The partially serrated 4.75-inches AUS8 stainless steel blade is powder coated to keep it shining and tough.
The overall measurement of the SOG Seal pup knife is 9” while its weight is put at 0.35 pounds making it a very lightweight piece of gear to carry around. The knife has a rugged yet durable Zytel grip handle which should be comfortable for holding and a MOLLE compatible nylon sheath with an accessory pouch for safe keeping when not in use.
The SOG pup undergoes a unique cryogenic heat treatment to enable it get tougher and be resistant to wears. The process involves having the SOG pup temperature lowered to less than minus 300 degree Fahrenheit (-300°F) and then gradually increased back to room temperature.
- The SOG seal pup would pass for a general purpose blade making it a perfect backpacking, camping and hiking knife.
- The heat treatment of the SOG Seal pup made it resistant to wear and also made it tougher
- The knife is the preferred knife of the US navy seal which speaks volumes of its prowess
- The knife has an easy to hold Zytel handle which is durable
- The SOG pup has a MOLLE compatible nylon sheath for easy carriage.
- The blade is powder coated and measures 4.75” and has a partially serrated part.
- Sharpening the serrated part of the SOG pup blade can be difficult.
The Gerber paraframe mini fine steel knife is a pocket knife with one handed assist opening mechanism.
The overall length of the Gerber mini knife is 6” while the blade length is 2.22”.
Of course, it’s a stainless steel blade and weighs just about 0.08 pounds, making it one of the lightest, budget friendly and worthy pocket knife available.
- Dirt cheap everyday carry pocket knife. Super budget friendly and delivers top notch results too.
- Very durable stainless steel pocket knife
- Lightweight paraframe pocket knife
- Aesthetically gorgeous piece of craft
- The knife is very functional everyday tool
- The opening and closing mechanism can be difficult if not dangerous.
Yes, this is a combat utility knife but heck; this knife would serve on just about any grounds from backpacking to camping to hiking the Ka-Bar BK7 is sure to deliver.
It sports a unique design which would pass for any wilderness, exploration or hiking utility knife.
The Ka-Bar Becker BK7 has its blade made of cro-val steel which is easily one of the best steel blades around. Overall look and feel of the BK7 combat utility knife is sturdy, and premium.
It’s most definitely built to last.
- Ka-Bar Becker BK7 is a premium looking combat utility knife made with adventure seekers and combat soldiers in mind.
- It is very sturdily made
- The knife is lightweight and can be carried easily
- It’s the perfect cutting tool for sniping ropes, cutting tree branches, splitting wood and slicing meat.
- The overall length of the BK7 is 12.75-inches which makes is a handy hiking tool instead of packing a machete.
- If you are on a stiff budget, then you might want to consider going for other cheaper knives on the list.
Next on the list is the TAC Force TF-705 assisted opening folding knife. Just like the Ka-Bar BK7, it’s an all rounder from a backpacking knife to a combat and tactical knife.
You however won’t need its tactical prowess on your backpacking trip (hopefully), so you’ll need its survival capabilities instead.
The TF-705 comes super sharp for felling trees, splitting logs and sawing wood (using the serrated area of the blade).
Importantly, it’s a very versatile knife and can be used as a bottle opener, a screw driver and even a saw.
There’s a pocket clip located at the back of the knife’s handle for an easy and convenient carry.
- A one standout positive of the TAC Force TF-705 is its price-point. It’s very cheap which is not a very familiar trait of tactical folding knives
- It can be used as a bottle opener – so much for backpacking with a pack of beer.
- Features an odd but impressive look which is unique
- The knife can be used for several things including to cut branches, fell trees, slice ropes, meat, cheese, chop wood, saw bones and logs
- The knife is very sturdily built and designed to last
- The switching mechanism tends to malfunction and can cause it to get spoilt easily
If you are going backpacking, you surely would need a carry around portable knife. This list brings to light some of the best backpacking knife available for thrill seekers. There are the portable sets of knives like the Gerber paraframe mini, the all in one emergency knives like the BlizeTec survival knife which can come in handy with fire starter, LED flashlight and other interesting features.
There are tactical and military styled knives like the Ka-Bar full size USMC Knife, SOG SEAL Pup and the TAC Force TF-705 assisted opening folding knife. If a general purpose knife is your preference, the Morakniv and the Buck knives could just serve you well.
Overall, depending on your preference, our backpacking knife reviews has the best of everything and best of all, most are priced reasonably so every backpacker can afford something.