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Good knife for exploration

Q. I need a good knife for exploring a forest. I want a knife that either unfolds or stays open. Any suggestions?
—Matt the Explorer, Kent, Wash.

A. Exploring a forest, huh? Sounds fun. I think your best bet is a folding knife like the new Gerber Mini Swagger ($27; It has a 2.8-inch long fine edge stainless steel blade that locks open so it won’t fold back on your fingers while you’re using it. The Mini Swagger is pretty compact and weighs just 2.9 ounces so you can stash it in your pants pocket or pack, but it’s still plenty big to handle any kind of cutting jobs you’ll encounter out there on the trail. Plus, with its jet black color and machined handle, this knife looks super cool, like something a Navy SEAL would carry!

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15 Comments on Good knife for exploration

  1. coolman360 // June 5, 2012 at 11:56 am // Reply

    I actually have a mini swagger and it works great.

  2. I also need a knife for exploring!

  3. I carry two knives. A Gerber multiplier and a Boy Scout Swiss folding knife. I have a Nite Eyes pouch that holds both knives, my flashlight, my knife sharpener, my pen and my flint, drier lint and matches for fire building. You could probably get by with just the Gerber as it has everything but the saw, or you could forget about the pliers, which I use with my dutch oven, and get by with just the Scout knife. Why do you need a sheath knife when the folding knife is just as good, contains more tools and in lighter.

  4. Hey anyone have the GERBER LMF II? everyone else says it’s really good! If you have it or have used it please give me your opinion! thank all!

  5. I use a USMC-Issue Ka-Bar Short, with a blade approximately 6 inches long. It comes in 2 models: full blade or part-serrated. The one I have is a full blade. They are expensive (mine was $80), but it is near-impossible to destroy, low maintenance (the cleaning after every 10th use), can be used as a hammer (the blade is forged into the handle, not attached), doesn’t rust as easily as normal knives, and can be used for multiple tasks (small machete, killing small animals, etc…

  6. Go with a Gerber compact Scout

    • The compact scout is just a little small for me. No offense to the knife it self but it is just a little small. But it is a great back up knife if you ever lose your main knife. I have the Bear Grylls Gerber Scout and it works pretty good. Another great knife is the Buck Red Point folding knife.

  7. knife spealist // July 26, 2011 at 3:42 pm // Reply

    i perfer a smith in weson boot knife i got one at gun show for like $15 it is well balenced and good foor camping with a double blad it is also good for throwing

  8. KnifeFanatic // July 16, 2011 at 3:58 am // Reply

    A great knife for exploration would be something either really light and sharp like a:

    Spyderco Delica4 FRN Sabre Ground: Stronger tip than the FFG and can be fround around $50 dollars. or its Byrd Counterpart the Byrd MedowLark2 for around 20-25 dollars.

    or A STRONG fixed blade like a Becker Campanion or Buck Special.

    • Or the Gerber LMF II. Which is a military survival knife made in the USA and used by U.S. helicopter pilots all over the world!

  9. i would recomend any kind of multitool knife because they have a use for almost any situation.for a safer one get one with a locking blade.

    • Knife xpert 157 (aka Chad 101) // September 15, 2011 at 10:50 am // Reply

      Yes it is good to have a multi-tool. But in the wild I would go with a fixed blade any day.(since there are not a whole lot of screws to tighten in the wilderness if you know what I mean, lol.) I personally love the USA made GERBER LMF II military fixed blade knife.

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