Knives: Be Prepared!

If you read “almost any” of the wilderness survival books, you’ll find that they tell you to carry a good fixed-blade knife. The experts recommend the fixed-blade design because they believe it offers a smaller chance of injury — it won’t clamp shut on your fingers. Personally, when I need to travel light on one-day long-distance endurance hikes, I carry a folding multi-tool knife (a Swiss Army knife), but when I’m camping or backpacking, I take along a lightweight fixed-blade tactical knife.

Then, of course, I keep a folding pocket knife in my car and a smaller one on my key chain. Like they say out West, a cowboy’s kid learns to use a knife before he learns to ride a tricycle or pony. They learn to be prepared, and to that end I also carry a headlamp, a miniature flashlight, extra batteries, water, and food, three different ways to start a campfire, a signal mirror, and a first-aid kit.