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The Best Survival Knives | My Personal List of the 19 Best Survival Knives on the Market

Quick Picks – If You Don’t Want To Read About Every Knife:

Best Overall: LionSteel M7
Best Budget: Schrade Extreme Survival
Best Value: Ontario Rat7

The Best Knife Is The One You Have

I have wanted to write my top picks for the best survival knife for a long time, but it’s a daunting task. First off, what exactly is a survival knife, and how do you pick the best one? Really, as they say, the best knife is the one you have with you. 

When I made this list, I imagined I was in a life-and-death situation, such as a plane crash, terrorist attack, or another crazy event where I had just one knife. Think Red Dawn or 21 Days Later. 

So, if my life and the lives of those I cared for depended on just one knife, which would it be? That is how I made this list. Before we dive in, I believe that a survival knife should have some chopping abilities as well as the ability to assist in starting a fire, so something over 6” and made from high-carbon steel will do. A survival knife should also be able to process firewood and field dress an animal.

Not every knife on my list meets those exact parameters, but the following knives will be durable and get you through just about any challenging situation you may find yourself in. 

I picked the following knives for their ruggedness, blade steel, how they cut, and, in some cases, company history. This survival knife list stops short of the giant choppers out there and doesn’t get into machetes. A list of survival machetes is a whole other article.

Why Take My Advice? Besides being a gear and knife nut, I am an avid backcountry camper and spend a lot of time in the wilderness. On top of my real-world experience, I actually own or have owned all nineteen knives on this list, as you can tell by my pictures. The only exception is the Jeo-Tec; I think I lost it.

I organized my list of survival knives by size, from smallest to biggest. Everyone has a slightly different need and idea of a survival knife’s length, so the following list covers a wide range of sizes.

Best Survival Knife List by Tech Writer EDC:
Morakniv Garberg Survival – 4.3″
Cold Steel RAZORTEK 5″
LOTHAR Bat Fixed Blade – 5″
KA-BAR Becker BK2 – 5.25″
BPS Knives Adventurer – 5.31″
CRKT Catchall Fixed Blade – 5.50″
JEO-TEC Nº39 CELTIBERO – 5.7″
Cold Steel SRK – 6″
WEYLAND Tracker Knife – 6″
Eafengrow EF128 Fixed Blade – 6.1″
Tops Knives Brush Wolf – 6.38″
Schrade Extreme Survival SCHF9 – 6.4″
ESEE-6 Micarta Handle – 6.5″
NedFoss Kukri Survival Knife – 6.69″
Ontario Knife Co. 8668 Rat-7 – 7″
Lion Steel M7 LSTM7BCVG – 7″
Condor Primitive Sequoia Knife – 8.3″
Terävä Skrama 240 – 9.4″
Ontario Knife Company 8689 – 10.1″

Morakniv Garberg Survival

Check Out The Mora Garberg Knife On BladeHQ & Amazon

Compact Yet Mighty: The Morakniv Garberg Packs a Punch Without Weighing You Down

Overall Length: 9”
Blade Length: 4.3”
Blade Steel: Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 4.47”
Handle Material: Rubber

The Garberg is the shortest knife on the list, but a recent camping trip where I put it through the wringer made me a believer. It takes a wicked edge, throws tons of sparks, has a heavy-duty grip, and an exposed pommel for bashing and banging.

The Morakniv Garberg Survival knife is a Swedish-made knife featuring a 4.3-inch carbon steel blade. It’s known for its compact design, full tang construction, and Scandi grind, which makes it excellent for carving and other fine tasks. The handle is made from a rubberized material that provides a secure grip, making it ideal for lightweight backpacking trips and survival situations.

Why it Made the List: Its compact size and performance make it ideal for lightweight backpacking trips.

Pros:

  • Compact
  • Durable
  • Excellent for fine tasks

Con:

  • Limited chopping ability

Other Mora Options:

For a budget version, check out the Moraniv Companion for under $20, and I reviewed it here. I have been looking at the Morakniv Pathfinder since it came out. I can’t image how awesome a Mora with a 6.75″ blade will be!

Cold Steel RAZORTEK

Check Out The Razor Tek Knife On BladeHQ & Amazon

The Precision Powerhouse

Overall Length: 10.08”
Blade Length: 4.96”
Blade Steel: D2
Handle Length: 5.12”
Handle Material: G10

The Cold Steel RAZOR TEK is the new kid in the survival knife category. It kept coming up in my Amazon feed, and I have seen it pop up in some reviews, so I thought I would check it out. Like a lot of other ColdSteel knives I have had, you get a lot for your money.

The 5″ blade isn’t designed for extreme tasks, but it feels good in the hand, is very sharp, and has a nice heft to it, so it is ready for action. This knife is crafted with high-quality materials that ensure durability and a sharp edge that can cut through almost anything with ease. 

The handle is designed to provide a firm grip, allowing for precise control even with its large size. This knife is not just a tool, but a statement of strength and capability, making it a must-have for serious enthusiasts and professionals. It sits right in the middle of the pack in size but definitely excels at cutting.

Reason it Made the List: Its mid-ranged size and cutting power make it a unique and formidable tool for a variety of heavy-duty tasks, standing out as a true powerhouse in the survival knife category.

Pros:

  • High-Value knife
  • High-quality construction ensures durability
  • Offers both power and precision in cutting

Con:

Other Options From Cold Steel:

If you need something more aggressive and larger, the Cold Steel Drop Forged Series fixed blade is where you should look. After I bought my Razortec 5, I found that Cold Steel also makes it in a 6.5″ version. This will be an amazing knife in this size.

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LOTHAR Bat Fixed Blade

Check Out The Lother Bat Knife On Amazon

Modern Design, Timeless Reliability: The LOTHAR Bat is the Future of Outdoor Knives

Overall Length: 10.2”
Blade Length: 5”
Blade Steel: D2
Handle Length: 5.2”
Handle Material: G10

I bought this because I have never heard of Lothar before and recently have seen several of their knives pop up on Amazon. So, I decided to see what $60 would get me. It was bigger than some, so I thought the chopping power would be good.

The LOTHAR Bat Fixed Blade features a 5-inch D2 steel blade. Designed for the modern outdoor enthusiast, this knife combines high-quality materials with a sleek, modern design. The handle is made from G-10 material, providing a comfortable grip and excellent durability.

Why it Made the List: Its modern design and high-quality materials make it a reliable choice for the contemporary adventurer.

Pros:

  • Modern design
  • High-quality materials
  • Excellent edge retention

Con:

  • I wasn’t a fan of the sheath.

Other Options From Lothar:

I was impressed with the build quality for being under $60; while I have not tried these, I have my eye on the Lothar KA52 and the Fox Hunting Knife. Both are D2 steel, but have different blade shapes.

KA-BAR Becker BK2

Check Out The Becker BK2 On BladeHQ & Amazon

Built for the Toughest Tasks: The Becker BK2 is Your Heavy-Duty Hero

Overall Length: 10.5”
Blade Length: 5.25”
Blade Steel: 1095 Cro-Van Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5.25”
Handle Material: Micarta (upgrade)

The BK2 is both a favorite and a sentimental choice. What really turned me onto it was the Dutch Bushcraft Knife reviews from a few years ago. It’s probably the greatest knife review of all time, and the guys put it through a destruction test. I will spoil it for you; the knife survives. I think it was the first time I saw someone shoot an air rifle at a knife to test its strength.

The KA-BAR Becker BK2 is a U.S.-made knife featuring a 5.25-inch 1095 Cro-Van steel blade. The blade is thick and robust, designed specifically for heavy-duty tasks like chopping wood and batoning. The handle is made from Grivory, providing a balanced grip for a variety of hand sizes.

My knife above has the upgraded micarta scales.

Why it Made the List: Its robust design and performance in heavy-duty tasks make it a reliable choice.

Pros:

  • Heavy-duty design
  • Excellent for chopping
  • Durable

Con:

  • Bulky and heavy

Other Ka-Bar Options:

The obvious choice after the Becker BK9 is its big brother, the BK7, Don’t let the number seven fool you; this is a big beast.

BPS Knives HK5

Check Out The BPS HK-5 On Amazon

Quality on a Budget: The Adventurer Offers Reliable Performance Without the Hefty Price Tag

Overall Length: 10”
Blade Length: 5.31”
Blade Steel: High Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 4.69”
Handle Material: Walnut Wood

The BPS Knives HK5 is a Ukrainian-made knife featuring a 4-inch high carbon steel blade. The blade is designed for basic outdoor tasks like carving and slicing, while the wooden handle provides a comfortable grip. Despite its affordability, this knife offers decent performance and is a good entry-level option for outdoor enthusiasts.

I did a full review of the Adventurer, which is their Bushcraft version here; both are excellent knives that can’t be beaten for under $40! The leather sheath is also very nice.

Why it Made the List: Its affordability and decent performance make it a good entry-level option.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Decent performance
  • Lightweight

Con:

  • The 1066 does rust easily if not oiled a lot.

Other BPS Knife Options:

For the money, the BPS knives are a great deal; check out the G10 handle version Raven here, which I did a review on here.

CRKT Catchall Fixed Blade

Check Out The CRKT Catchall On BladeHQ & Amazon

The Jack-of-All-Trades: CRKT Catchall is Your Versatile Partner for Any Outdoor Challenge

Overall Length: 10.25”
Blade Length: 5.50”
Blade Steel: Stainless Steel 8Cr13Mov
Handle Length: 4.75”
Handle Material: GRN/ Rubber

I have wanted to pick up the Catchall for at least 2-3 years. The blade shape and price always make it an enticing package. While the 8Cr13Mov isn’t my first choice for blade steel on a survival knife, it does get the job done well enough. This balances the line between camp knife and survival knife.

The CRKT Catchall Fixed Blade features a 5.5-inch stainless steel blade that is designed for versatility. The blade is coated for added durability and corrosion resistance, while the ergonomic handle is made from textured rubber for a secure grip. This knife is well-suited for a variety of outdoor tasks, from slicing and dicing to more demanding survival scenarios. Its balanced design makes it a reliable choice for any outdoor enthusiast.

Why it Made the List: Its versatile blade design and ergonomic handle make it a reliable and multi-functional tool for a wide range of outdoor tasks.

Pros:

  • Versatile blade design
  • Ergonomic and secure grip
  • Durable construction with coated blade

Con:

  • It may be a little lightweight for some extreme tasks and situations.

Other CRKT Options:

Two CRKT knives immediately come to mind, both on the smaller side, but both awesome knives. If you want to stay in the under 5″ inches, look at the Hunt N’ Fish or the more aggressive Ramadi Fixed Blade.

JEO-TEC Nº39 CELTIBERO

Check Out The Knife On Amazon

Spanish Flair, Universal Utility: The Celtibero is Your Versatile Outdoor Solution

Overall Length: 11”
Blade Length: 5.7”
Blade Steel: MOVA-58 Stainless Steel
Handle Length: 5.3”
Handle Material: Micarta Yute Vison

This is another fixed blade I found after seeing a review on Survival On Purpose. It’s got everything you need and a cool backstory. You;ll notice I had to use a factory picture here, I can’t for the life of me find where I put the No.39! I think it was left at a campsite this past summer…I will be buying another, it’s that good.

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The JEO-TEC Nº39 CELTIBERO is a Spanish-made knife featuring a 5.7-inch MOVA-58 stainless steel blade. The blade is designed for a variety of outdoor tasks, from slicing to chopping. The handle is made from Micarta, providing a comfortable grip for extended use.

Why it Made the List: Its unique design and versatility make it a great choice for a variety of tasks.

Pros:

  • Unique design
  • Versatile
  • Comfortable grip

Con:

  • On the expensive side, but it is a buy it right, buy it once type of knife.

Other Options From Jeo-Tec:

If you love the bushcraft/tracker-style blade shape, Jeo-Tec has a sweet one; the JEO-TEC Nº51 is one to pick up.

Cold Steel SRK

Check Out The SRK On BladeHQ & Amazon

Affordable Excellence: Get Military-Grade Durability Without Breaking the Bank with the Cold Steel SRK

Overall Length: 10.75”
Blade Length: 6”
Blade Steel: SK-5 Stainless Steel
Handle Lenght: 4.75”
Handle Material:
Kraton

I love the SRK; I only wish it had an exposed pommel. Other than that, it’s an awesome knife. I have one in both cars and another in the big family van.

The Cold Steel SRK (Survival Rescue Knife) features a 6-inch SK-5 steel blade that is versatile enough for a variety of tasks. The handle is made from Kraton, which provides an excellent grip even in wet conditions. This knife is a popular choice for military personnel and outdoor enthusiasts alike, thanks to its all-around performance and affordability.

Why it Made the List: Its all-around performance and affordability make it a great choice for anyone.

Pros:

  • Versatile
  • Affordable
  • Excellent grip

Con:

  • The sheath is only OK

Other Cold Steel Options: 

The Leather Neck would be another good option in a similar size range, but a different style. I reviewed one here. The Drop Forged Survivalist is another excellent option that is bigger than the SRK.

WEYLAND Tracker Knife

Check Out The Weyland Tracker On Amazon

Track, Hunt, Survive: The WEYLAND Tracker is Your Specialized Tool for the Great Outdoors

Overall Length: 11.75”
Blade Length: 6”
Blade Steel: 1095 High Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5.75”
Handle Material: G10

I’ve always wanted to test out one of these “tracker” style knives, but all the real ones are costly. It’s a specialized knife, and I wasn’t going to drop that kind of money just for a maybe. But, then, I found the Weyland. Since I reviewed one of their kukuris, I knew it was going to be decent for the money.

The WEYLAND Tracker Knife features a 6-inch 1095 high carbon steel blade. Designed specifically for tracking and survival situations, this knife offers a specialized design that excels in specific tasks. The handle is made from Micarta, providing a comfortable grip for extended use.

After having it for a few weeks, I can see the benefit of the blade style. It can do many different tasks, and the knife is very sharp out of the box and is somewhat easy to sharpen. The steel takes an edge very easily; you have to go at it from a few angles to get the blade shape just right. It’s a keeper, and I was also impressed with the sheath.

Why it Made the List: Its specialized design and performance in tracking tasks make it a unique choice.

Pros:

  • Specialized design
  • Excellent for tracking
  • Durable

Con:

  • Not versatile for everyday tasks

Weyland is relatively new to the scene, but they put out a decent product; you can check out their Kukuri Machete that I reviewed here.

Eafengrow EF128 Fixed Blade

Check Out The EF128 On Amazon

Everyday Reliability Meets Tactical Functionality: The EF128 is Your All-in-One Survival Solution

Overall Length: 10.08”
Blade Length: 6.1”
Blade Steel: DC53
Handle Length: 5.12”
Handle Material: G10

Eafengrow is a relatively new knife maker, and I first found them when looking for budget folding knives. I was impressed with their EF223 and put it on my best budget list. I then tried the EF107 as a fixed-blade EDC option, and it was just as great. So, I bought the EF128 to test out. This guy, with its black-coated blade and textured G10 scales, makes it look a little more tactical than survival, but trust me, this guy is worth the price of admission.

The Eafengrow EF128 Fixed Blade features a 6-inch DC53 steel blade, making it a mid-sized option and an effective choice for a variety of tasks. DC53 steel is not my first choice for a survival blade, but it does sharpen easily and has decent edge retention so that I will go with it here. The blade is coated for added corrosion resistance, and the G-10 handle ensures a secure grip in all conditions. This knife is well-suited for both everyday carry (EDC) and tactical uses, offering a balanced blend of size and performance.

Why it Made the List: Its compact size, combined with a high-quality blade and handle, make it a versatile choice for both everyday and tactical use.

Pros:

  • Compact and easy to carry
  • High-quality DC53 steel blade
  • Versatile for both EDC and tactical use

Con:

  • I found the handle to be a tad too large.

Tops Knives Brush Wolf

Check Out The TOPS Brush Wolf On BladeHQ & Amazon

Unmatched Balance, Unbeatable Performance: The Brush Wolf is Your Ultimate Wilderness Companion

Overall Length: 12.13”
Blade Length: 6.38”
Blade Steel: 1095 RC 56-58 Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5.75”
Handle Material: Micarta

I bought this knife for my best friend’s 50th birthday. He loves knives and would have loved this one! But, when I opened it, it was so awesome I kept it for myself. Don’t worry; he got a really cool Condor Maechete I was about to review. From the second I opened it, it’s been amazing. It could easily give my Skarama a run for the money as a one-knife option.

The Tops Knives Brush Wolf is a U.S.-made knife featuring a 6.38-inch blade made from 1095 RC 56-58 carbon steel. The blade is coated for added corrosion resistance, and the handle is made from durable Micarta. Designed for rugged outdoor use, this knife is well-suited for hunting, fishing, and survival scenarios.

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Why it Made the List: Its balance and durability were unmatched in backcountry tests.

Pros:

  • Excellent balance
  • Durable construction
  • Sharp edge retention

Con:

  • Expensive

Other Options From TOPS Knives:

TOPS makes the best of the best when it comes to outdoor knives. I picked up a TPMAC230 230 Machete last year, and it’s amazing, I mean really amazing. You can read my review of the 230 Machete here. As for another survival knife option, the Apache Dawn Rockies is a no-brainer; with a 6.75″ 1095 blade and exposed pommel, it’s ready to take on the world.

Schrade Extreme Survival SCHF9

Check Out The Knife On BladeHQ & Amazon

Robust and Affordable: The SCHF9 is Your Budget-Friendly Choice for Heavy-Duty Tasks

Overall Length: 12.1”
Blade Length: 6.4”
Blade Steel: High Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5.7”
Handle Material: Kraton

The Schrade Extreme Survival SCHF9 features a 6.4-inch high carbon steel blade. The blade is designed for a variety of heavy-duty tasks, from chopping wood to slicing through thick materials. The handle is made from Kraton, providing a secure grip even in wet conditions.

Schrade has been putting out amazing budget knives for years, and that is exactly what the SCHF9 is, amazing for the money. I have had this one for at least eight years, and it’s what I started out with when I was getting into bigger blades.

Why it Made the List: Its affordability and robust design make it a good choice for those on a budget.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Robust design
  • Good for heavy-duty tasks

Con:

  • A Little Heavy

Other Schade Options:

Schrade is a good place to start if you are not sure you need a survival knife and what to see what they are all about. They have a large catalog of knives at many price points. The Schrade SCHF3N or the Schrade Delta Class Extreme Survival would be two solid choices.

ESEE-6 Micarta Handle

Check Out The Knife On BladeHQ & Amazon

Invest in Longevity: The ESEE-6 Offers Unbeatable Durability and Comfort for Extended Use

Overall Length: 11.73”
Blade Length: 6.5”
Blade Steel: 1095 High Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5.23”
Handle Material: G10

If you watch a bunch of YouTube survival videos you are bound to see several Esee blades come up and I am sure you will see this one. It absolutely is the only knife you need. It cuts awesomely, is easy to sharpen, and the newer version here with the contoured handle is amazing to work with.

The ESEE-6 with a G10 Handle features a 6.5-inch 1095 high carbon steel blade. Known for its durability and long-lasting sharpness, this knife is a reliable choice for extended trips. The Micarta handle is ergonomically designed for a comfortable grip, and the knife comes with a durable sheath for easy carry.

Why it Made the List: Its long-lasting sharpness and comfortable handle make it a reliable choice for extended trips.

Pros:

  • Long-lasting sharpness
  • Comfortable handle
  • Excellent balance

Con:

  • Slightly More Expensive Than Some Others

Other Options From Esee:

The king of all big choppers and survival knives has to be the Esee JUNGLAS, it’s expensive, but outstanding is an understatement. Make sure to check out Gideon’s Tactacal review on YouTube from a few years ago.

Need a smaller survival knife? I love my ESEE-3 with micarta scales. See it here and see a size comparison here.

NedFoss Kukri Survival Knife

Check Out The Nedd Foss Kukuri On Amazon

Chop Like a Pro: The NedFoss Kukri is Your Exotic Powerhouse for Heavy-Duty Cutting

Overall Length: 11.5”
Blade Length: 6.69”
Blade Steel: Stainless Steel 8Cr13Mov
Handle Length: 4.81”
Handle Material: G10

They call it a kukuri, but the blade curve is a little milder and seems more akin to a traditional survival knife. I’ve been impressed with Ned Foss’s stuff before as I have reviewed one of their axes, and their bushcraft knife made our Best Budget Bushcraft Knife list.

The NedFoss Kukri Survival Knife features a 7-inch stainless steel blade in the traditional Kukri style. The blade is designed specifically for chopping and slicing, making it a standout for specific tasks. The handle is made from durable materials, providing a comfortable grip for extended use. Overall I am impressed at what you get for the money, it’s a substantial blade and a decent package.


Why it Made the List: Its unique design and chopping ability make it a standout for specific tasks.

Pros:

  • Unique Kukri design
  • Excellent for chopping
  • Durable

Con:

  • Blade steel not as ideal for survival situations

Ontario Knife Co. 8668 Rat-7

Check Out The OKC Rat 7 On BladeHQ & Amazon

Survive and Thrive: The Rat-7 is Your Trusty Sidekick for Long-Term Survival

Overall Length: 12.24”
Blade Length: 7”
Blade Steel: 1095 Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5.24”
Handle Material: Micarta

When you can’t afford an Esee 6, start here! OKC puts out super value-focused blades. Really, the Rat 7 could last you a lifetime.

The Ontario Knife Co. 8668 Rat-7 features a 7-inch 1095 carbon steel blade. The blade is coated for corrosion resistance, and the handle is made from durable Micarta. Designed for survival situations and long-term use, this knife is a reliable choice for those who need durability and excellent edge retention.

Why it Made the List: Its durability and design make it a reliable choice for survival scenarios.

Pros:

  • Durable
  • Excellent edge retention
  • Versatile

Con:

  • Handle edges can have some pressure points under extreme use

Other Options From Ontario:

If an Esee Junglas is too rich, definitely look at the Ontario Rtak II for half the Esee price. This is what I use, and it’s a monster. 

If you want more of a USMC Fighting Knife or a smaller option, look at the 8680 Sp-2 Survival Bowie.

Lion Steel M7

Check Out The Knife On BladeHQ & Amazon

Italian Craftsmanship, Global Functionality: The Lion Steel M7 is Where Style Meets Substance

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Overall Length: 12.5”
Blade Length: 7”
Blade Steel: Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5.5”
Handle Material: G10

This just might be my new all-around favorite, unseating the Becker BK2. The BK2 was always a little short, and the BK7 was a little too thick; the M7 is a very nice in-between option and, of course, nicer steel.

The Lion Steel M7 LSTM7BCVG is an Italian-made knife featuring a 7-inch Sleipner steel blade. The blade is designed for both style and function, with a unique curvature that allows for versatile use. The handle is made from G-10 material, providing a comfortable and secure grip.

Why it Made the List: Its unique design and high-quality materials make it a stylish yet functional choice.

Pros:

  • Stylish design
  • High-quality materials
  • Excellent balance

Con:

  • Expensive

Other Lionsteel Options”

If the M7 is a tad too big or you want a different style, then you need to check out the M4 Bushcrafter with Micarta scales. It is a true beauty, awesome steel and good looks.

Condor Primitive Sequoia Knife

Check Out The Knife On Amazon

The Rugged Outdoorsman’s Choice: Condor’s Primitive Sequoia is Built for the Wilderness

Overall Length: 14.5”
Blade Length: 8.37”
Blade Steel: 1075 High Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 6.13”
Handle Material: Micarta

I couldn’t have a list of survival knives without including at least one Condor. I am a fan of Condor Knife & Tool, and they offer some of the best value for mid-range knives. They also have a vast catalog of knives. Remember, survival is very personal and one knife may work for some and not others. Thats how the Suquia is. I never would have bought it except my friend picked up one, and when I saw it in person, I knew I wanted my own.

The Condor Primitive Sequoia Knife features a 8-inch high carbon steel blade that is designed for the most demanding outdoor tasks. The blade is treated for added durability and corrosion resistance, and the Micarta handle ensures a secure, comfortable grip. This knife is particularly well-suited for bushcraft and survival scenarios, offering a robust construction that can handle everything from chopping wood to skinning game. Its full-tang design adds to its overall durability, making it a reliable choice for any serious outdoor enthusiast.

Why it Made the List: Its robust construction, high-quality materials, and design focused on bushcraft and survival tasks make it a top choice for those who need a knife that can handle the rigors of the wilderness.

Pros:

  • Robust high carbon steel blade
  • Ergonomic Micarta handle
  • Excellent for bushcraft and survival tasks

Con:

  • May be too lightweight for dire or hardcore survival

Other Condor Knife & Tool Options:

Condor is my first choice when it comes to machetes, but they have a deep catalog of real-world survival knives. Two awesome places to look are the Crotalus and Toki. I reviewed the Crotalus here a few years ago.

Terävä Skrama 240

See The Skrama on Varusteleka Here

The One-Tool Wonder: Why Carry Multiple Tools When One Skrama Does It All?

I have raved about the Skarma for the last few years and I still do. it is absolutely the ultimate survival knife to me. In addition to it’s amazing abilities, it actually pretty lightweight. I love that it’s lighter but still has huge reach. The two handed grip is great if you want to do power strokes or use it more as a chopper. There are a bunch of awesome YouTube videos if you want to see it in action. Check out the DBY Guys, their video is good. They didn’t love it as much as me, but it’s still very impressive.

The Terävä Skrama 240 is a Finnish-made survival knife featuring a 9.5-inch carbon steel blade. Its unique design allows for both chopping and fine cutting, making it a versatile tool for bushcraft and survival situations. The handle is ergonomically designed for a comfortable grip, and the blade’s high-quality carbon steel ensures long-lasting sharpness and durability.

I have ordered directly from Varusteleka a few times already. Shipping isn’t too bad either.

I take this knife on every camping trip!

Overall Length: 16.9″
Blade Length: 9.4″
Blade Steel: Carbon Steel 80CrV2
Handle Length: 7.5”
Handle Material: Molded rubber

Why it Made the List: Exceptional versatility and durability made this knife a standout during camping and survival adventures.

Pros:

  • Versatile blade design
  • High-quality carbon steel
  • Comfortable grip

Con:

  • Hard to find sometimes unless you order direct, then a long wait.

Ontario Knife Company 8689

Check Out The Ontario Survival Bolo On Amazon

Tactical Mastery Meets Survival: The 8689 is Your Go-To for Any High-Stakes Scenario

Overall Length: 15.1”
Blade Length: 10.1”
Blade Steel: 5160 Carbon Steel
Handle Length: 5”
Handle Material: Kraton


This guy is amazing. I guess they are all are, or I wouldn’t have put it on the list. The Survival Bolo merges a big chopper with the blade profile of a machete to make an excellent crush warrior. I talked about this guy on the best machete for clearing brush video, but its edge retention and how it performs also lends itself to being a great survival companion.

The Ontario Knife Company 8689 features a 10-inch blade made from 5160 carbon steel. The blade is coated for added durability, and the handle is made from Micarta for a comfortable grip. This knife is designed for tactical and survival situations, with a robust construction that can handle intense use.

Why it Made the List: Its tactical features and robust construction make it ideal for intense survival scenarios.

Pros:

  • Tactical design and very grippy handle
  • Robust construction
  • Excellent edge retention

Con:

  • A tad heavy

Other Ontario Knife Options:

The TFI Ranger is another fantastic survival knife option, and it does have an exposed pommel

Your Trusty Companion in the Great Outdoors

In the vast and ever-expanding market of survival knives, finding the perfect companion for your outdoor adventures or emergency preparedness can be a daunting task. From the rugged and reliable to the sleek and modern, our roundup has brought together an array of options that cater to a variety of needs and preferences.

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Gerber Principle Knife Review

Whether you are a seasoned outdoorsman looking for a heavy-duty tool to accompany you on your wilderness expeditions, or a beginner seeking a reliable and affordable option for your first foray into the world of survival gear, our list offers something for everyone.

Remember, the best survival knife is not always the most expensive or the most feature-packed; it’s the one that suits your individual needs and circumstances perfectly. From basic, budget-friendly options that offer ease of sharpening and excellent spark production with a ferro rod, to high-end choices that bring together the best in materials and craftsmanship, your ideal knife is a balance of functionality, durability, and affordability.

As you venture into the great outdoors, your survival knife will be by your side, ready to assist in a myriad of tasks, from setting up camp to emergency situations. Choose wisely, and your survival knife will not just be a tool, but a trusted companion in your outdoor adventures.

How to Pick a Survival Knife: Top 10 Considerations

Choosing the right survival knife is a critical decision that can significantly impact your outdoor adventures or emergency preparedness. Here are ten factors to consider when selecting the perfect survival knife for your needs:

1. Intended Use

Consider the primary use of the knife. Will it be used for camping, hunting, or emergency survival situations? Different activities might require different features in a knife.

2. Terrain

Think about the terrain where you’ll be using the knife. Different environments, such as forests, mountains, or deserts, may influence the type of knife you need.

3. Skill Level

Evaluate your skill level in handling knives, especially in the backcountry. Beginners might prefer a knife with safety features, while experienced users might opt for a more versatile tool.

4. Blade Material

Consider the blade material. High carbon steel blades are known for their durability and edge retention, while stainless steel offers excellent corrosion resistance.

5. Blade Shape

The blade shape is another vital consideration. Different shapes like clip point, drop point, or tanto offer varied benefits for tasks such as slicing, piercing, or chopping.

6. Handle Material and Ergonomics

Look for a knife with a comfortable and durable handle. Materials like Micarta, G-10, or rubber offer good grip and ergonomics.

7. Size and Weight

Consider the size and weight of the knife. While larger knives can handle heavy-duty tasks, they might be cumbersome for everyday carry. Find a balance that suits your needs.

8. Fixed vs. Folding

Decide between a fixed blade and a folding knife. Fixed blades offer more strength and durability, making them suitable for heavy-duty tasks, while folding knives are more compact and convenient for everyday carry.

9. Additional Features

Consider if you need additional features like a serrated edge, lanyard hole, or glass breaker. These features can add versatility to your knife, making it a more valuable tool in emergencies.

10. Budget

Finally, consider your budget. While it’s tempting to go for a high-end knife, there are many affordable options that offer excellent performance and durability.

Remember, the best survival knife is one that suits your individual needs and preferences, providing reliability and functionality when you need it most.

The Hidden Benefits of Budget-Friendly Survival Knives

In the realm of survival knives, a higher price tag doesn’t always equate to higher quality or better performance. In fact, there are several reasons why opting for a more budget-friendly knife might be in your best interest, especially when it comes to survival situations.

Firstly, cheaper knives are often made with basic steel types, which, contrary to what one might assume, can be a significant advantage in a survival scenario. These basic steels tend to be easier to sharpen in the field, a crucial factor when you find yourself in situations where maintaining a sharp edge with limited resources is vital. Being able to quickly and efficiently hone your blade with rudimentary sharpening tools can be a lifesaver, quite literally.

Furthermore, these basic steel types are often more compatible with ferro rods, producing more sparks and thereby making the fire-starting process much more straightforward. In survival situations, being able to start a fire quickly and efficiently can be a matter of life and death, making this characteristic of cheaper steels incredibly valuable.

Moreover, opting for a more affordable knife means that you won’t be overly concerned about putting it through its paces. A survival knife is meant to be used, and used heavily, and not being worried about damaging an expensive tool means you’re more likely to use it to its full potential.

Therefore, when choosing a survival knife, don’t be swayed solely by price tags and brand names. Sometimes, a more affordable option can provide you with the exact features and characteristics necessary to make it a valuable and reliable tool in survival situations. Remember, in the world of survival knives, functionality and practicality should always take precedence over luxury and aesthetics.

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