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The Best Hunting Knives

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Buyer's Guide

Bowie Knives: The Best Hunting Knife or Butcher's Breaking Knife

Bowie knives are huge and supposedly made by the once-notorious knife fighter named James Bowie around the early 19th century.

However, its origins are lost to the murky depths of history, so there is an equally murky consensus as to the origins of this particular style of knife.

Regardless of its history, the bowie knife is useful for some hunters who go after games with particularly thick skin or armored plating.

Which may beg the question: Armored game?

Yes, an alligator is delicious for those of you who haven’t had the chance.

Wild boars are also notorious amongst hunters for their thick, armor-like skin. Which is where the massive and heavy bowie knife comes into play.

While bowie knives are considered too large for your atypical hunting knife, it should be noted that they were and still are used as butcher’s breaking knives. Their large size and lightweight is just at home field dressing game as it is in a commercial kitchen.

So not only will this knife one its space in the field but can will also save you money in your own kitchen cutting ribeye steaks from a prime rib.

Buck Knives: The Best Knives Hunters Can’t Get Enough of

Buck knives are also another knife that has its history founded in the days was the frontier was still a frontier.

In 1902 by a man from Kentucky named Hoyt Buck made the first buck knife, and while not made for combat, Mr. Buck’s knives saw use during WWII when such knives were desperately needed.

Later, Buck’s knife-making business was carried on by his surviving family, who ended up creating the first folding hunting knife.

The Buck Knives company has since carried on this tradition, focusing on high-quality knives for the avid outdoorsman.

Skinning Knives: The Best Knives for Minimalist Hunters

These knives play as the intermediary between the two traditional choices of a bowie knife and a buck knife.

Not a massive boning knife made for processing an animal thoroughly, and neither a lightweight folder that was formerly a hunting knife turned combat knife turned hunting knife again.

In modern hunting not a lot of people fully dress down their animals with processing stations often being close by to hunting grounds. However, field dressing is still a must.

Which is where skinning knives step in to help.Of the people that use knives, chefs and hunters are my favorite. No two groups of people are more discerning or critical of the tools they carry with them into the job or field.

In a sense, even in today’s modern world, a knife can still be a life-saving tool. Maybe the head chef has had a bad day and needs excellence from his staff, and one bad cut on a steak is all it takes for someone to get canned.

Or perhaps a hunter got caught in the rain and the temperature is dropping and needs to make a fire now and all he brought with him was a magnesium fire starter. In either profession or hobby, knives still prove to be invaluable.

With that in mind, just as the arsenal of knives a chef has at his disposal, there is an equally large selection of knives for the particular hunter.

Dressing a duck is a much different task than field dressing a deer, and the knives used for each are also equally different.

So I’ll be going over the different types of knives a hunter or outdoorsman may carry with him or her into the field, their uses, and then a selection of some of the best knives of those types a person can buy.

Reviews Of The Best Hunting Knives From Our Research

Mossy Oak Bowie Knife

Sale
Mossy Oak 14-inch Bowie Knife, Full-Tang Fixed Blade Wood Handle Knife with Leather Sheath
  • ✅ Knife Dimensions - Overall Length: 14 inch (355 mm); Blade Length: 8-1/2 inch (215 mm); Handle Length: 5-1/2 inch...
  • ✅ Razor Sharp Clip Point Blade - 3CR13 blade has excellent strength, edge retention and corrosion resistance for...
  • ✅ Full-Tang Wood Handle - Classic design handle made of rosewood, provides comfortable grip and balance with brass...
  • ✅ Genuine Leather Sheath With Snap Fastener - High quality protective sheath with integrated belt loop for safe and...

This bowie knife is a perfect specimen of its species. Surprisingly light for a knife with a 14’ blade, weighing in at a mere 14 ounces, this sturdy knife is easy to use when you need to skin and dress game as hardy all an alligator.

For the surprisingly affordable cost you get:

  • A lifelong hunting companion with a 3CR13 blade. High-quality stainless steel that is resistant to rust and corrosion, yet easily maintained through proper care.
  • A beautiful rosewood handle complete with a brass bolster, rivets, and butt.
  • A gorgeous soft leather sheath with a belt loop and two fasteners built not only for safe carry but for looks.

Mossy Oak, long being providers of premium outdoorsman equipment honestly outdid themselves with this showpiece of a knife, especially at the cost.

Mid American Damascus Hunting Knife

MID AMERICA Cutlery Custom Hand Made Beautiful Damascus Hunting Knife Bowie Dagger Handle Stag...
  • Manufacturing in Beautiful Custom Hand Made Damascus Steel Unique Knife, Folding Knives ,Karambit Knife, Forged Knives...
  • Our Excellent design well made with 100% genius good quality. We use best and Excellent file work on the knives with a...
  • Excellent Design and best quality knives we manufacture with Original light brown, Dark Brown Leather Covers with Cow...
  • TRULY HAMMER FORGED DAMASCUS STEEL BLADE: Material used for forging 15N25 & 1080 and 288 layers of Damascus steel, Blade...

If you aren’t scared to splurge a little on a knife that you plan on using for the rest of your life and have settled on the bowie format, the eyeball this tall glass of water my friend.

Damascus steel is an ancient way of forging steel whose recipe was once long lost to the annals of time. At the time, Damascus steel was without equal and was easily identifiable for the iconic patterning on the steel blade.

However, due to the combination of modern forging techniques, with uses super steel that the ancient blacksmiths would marvel at today, Damascus steel has seen a revival.

This knife by Mid American Cutlery is a knife that will speak volumes about its wielder just like the ancient blades did.

This knife is:

  • Hand-forged with both 15n25 and 1080 steel, resulting in over 288 layers of modern Damascus steel. The layering boasts the iconic Damascus patterning that forged the steel’s place in history.
  • Has a natural horn for a handle held in place with brass bolster and butt.
  • Delivered in a gorgeous cow leather cover.

While definitely a knife for the dedicated and enthusiastic hunter, it should be noted that Damascus steel is high carbon steel, which is what gives it the beautiful pattern.

This means that it is susceptible to rust and corrosion if not regularly cared for. It is recommended that when it isn’t in use to oil the well well and regularly.

Buck Knives Hunting Knife

Sale
Buck 110 Folding Hunter Wooden Pocket Knife Knives
  • Blade Material: 420Hc Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Macassar Ebony Diamond Wood
  • Knife Length: 4 7/8 Inches(folded/closed)
  • Country of Manufacture: U.S.A.

In the tradition of being an innovator in the field of hunting knives, the 110 Folding Hunting Knife is a prime example of the quality expected, and those before us expected, of a Buck knife.

While the Hunter’s Folding Knife is no monstrosity such as the Bowie knife, it has found great success since its inception. Easily slipping into the pocket, this knife is also a great choice for everyday carry as well as being a dependable hunting companion

When it comes to hunting this sturdy knife allows for a hunter to easily skin and field dress a deer for later processing. When it comes to wild game such as deer, rabbit, or birds this knife can do it all and more.

The 110 Folding Hunter’s Knife:

  • Holds to the traditional design and quality that eventually led to the name “buck knife” referring to Lockback knives.
  • Has a 4 ⅞’ 420Hc stainless steel blade.
  • Owns to its timeless design with a Macassar Eboy Diamond wood handle with a brass bolter, rivets, and butt.

This is the kind of hunting knife that I would inherit from my grandad along with the cast iron cookware and advice that’ll last a lifetime. You take care of this hunting knife and it will take care of you.

Buck Knives 660 Hunting Knife

Buck Knives 660 Folding Pursuit Large Folding Hunting Knife with Guthook, 3-5/8" 420HC Steel Blade
  • FOLDING PURSUIT SERIES - Intended as a solid offering ranging between the Open Season premier series and the Buck Lite...
  • ESSENTIAL TOOL - Compact design for ease of carry, the Pursuit Folding knife series rides safely on the belt with a...
  • INNOVATIVE DESIGN - The Pursuit series folding knives feature a nylon handle with a grippe Versa flex rubber over mold
  • PERFORMANCE - Added detail was put into the design creating a comfortable, non-slip profile and sturdy, dependable blade

Another knife from Buck Knives shows its dedication to be on the leading edge of the knife industry. This folding knife shows that they aren’t scared to step up to the plate and get right with the times so-to-speak.

With one foot in the past and the other fully in the future, this take on their folding hunting knife is complete with the introduction of a gut hook and modern materials.

This many advertisers in the world today would put the word “tactical” in front of Froot Loops to increase its performance in the modern market, Buck Knives means it.

What you get with the 660 Pursuit Folding Hunting Knife is:

  • A modern design with a traditional format.
  • The incorporation of a nylon handle with a Versa flex overlay. This guarantees that you’ll be able to keep your grip on this knife in humid and wet conditions.
  • A hunting knife that knows what kinda steel works best, as Buck Knives is sticking to the 420Hc stainless steel.

While the Southern proverb, “Don’t fix what ain’t broke,” is something to live by, Buck Knive definitely improved on what did.

Mossberg All-In-One Hunting Knife

Sale
Mossberg Fixed Blade Knife, All in One Skinning Knife with Gut-Hook, for Hunters and Outdoors...
  • HUNTERS LOVE THIS KNIFE: The reviews are in and hunters agree this knife is an excellent choice when it comes to...
  • DURABLE AND LIGHTWEIGHT: This knife is lighter and shorter than many other hunting knives making it easier to handle....
  • STAINLESS STEEL BLADE: The 3-1/2-inch blade is made from stainless steel, which is designed to be used several times...
  • SIZED TO GET THE JOB DONE: The overall length of the Mossberg Fixed Blade Knife is 6 3/4 inches with the blade measuring...

Mossberg yet again steps up to bat bringing with it to swing it’s all-in-one fixed blade hunting knife.

This knife has a combination of the features of Buck’s Pursuit Folder as well as being a fixed blade.

This knife offers you:

  • Better grip when working due to the height of the stainless steel blade. Not only does the large blade give you better control, but so does the index finger rest built into the blade.
  • A textured G10 handle, made from a highly popular modern material for knives, also easily handled in wet situations.
  • A compact stiff design, which when coupled with the design of the blade grants you superior trimming ability.
  • And an easily affordable price for any hunter who might be on a budget.

If you are currently on a shoestring budget and looking to try out something new, you won’t be taking a risk on this knife.

GladiatorsGuild Hunting Knife

GladiatorsGuild 64 Custom Handmade Damascus Steel Skinner Hunting Knife Fixed Blade Small Skinning...
  • Beautiful Damascus Steel 7 to 7.5" Hunting skinner Knife
  • Custom Wood, Bone, Buffalo or Ram horn Handle Hunting Skinning Knife
  • A Comfortable Small Skinning Knife with sharp gut hook
  • Bushcraft Fixed Blade Hunting Knife with sheath for camping and outdoor usage

This is another small skinning knife that is similar enough in design to Mossbergs offering that there isn’t much to go on about. However, it’s for those that love their tools to have a little personality to go along with their functionality.

This knife:

  • Has a Damascus steel full tang blade, so remember, it’s a companion that requires constant attention but some people are into that.
  • Has a more traditional wooden handle made from walnut with brass rivets.
  • And comes with a soft leather sheath for safe carry.

Definitely a small package with a big personality, even if you find out you’d like something a bit heftier, this skinning knife will complement any hunter’s collection nicely.

Final Thoughts

Regardless of what knife you end up choosing, it is best to plan out your hunting trip. If you are not a big fan of processing your own game then make sure there's going to be someone around who can help.

Also, remember whatever knife type you choose might take some getting used to if it is new to you.

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