Hunting Knife vs Survival Knife – What’s The Difference?

Did you ever wonder if there was a difference between hunting knives and survival knives? If you are lost in the forest or mountains for a few days, then you’d quickly learn the difference if you had the wrong knife.

Of course, having any knife in a survival situation would be better than having no knife at all. But if you can have a choice between which knife to take with you in a desperate situation, you’d certainly want a survival knife instead of a hunting knife.

Hunting Knife vs Survival Knife guide

Survival Knives ​

Survival knives are made to be durable and extra strong. They are proven to have more strength and cut ability than hunting knives. If you were to ask any survivalist about this, they’d tell you that a survival knife is like a mini spear because you can stab things with its point. So, if you had to kill a wild animal and cut through its skin to harvest its meat for food, then a survival knife is the only knife that can accomplish both these tasks. They are even used to cut vegetables, cut meat, and start campfires in the outdoors. Survival knives are structured in a similar way as hunting knives, but the survival knives are more durable because they’re generally sturdier and thicker.

Hunting Knives​

Hunting knives can be reliable and strong as well, but not as much as survival knives. What is unique about hunting knives is they are generally multifaceted, which is great for cutting through an animal’s skin after it’s dead. A hunter wouldn’t typically kill an animal with a hunting knife, though. They’d likely shoot them with their shotgun or rifle, and then use the knife on their dead body to cut them open for their skin and meat. Survivalists, on the other hand, would use a survival knife to kill the animal because they don’t have a choice in the matter. It is their only weapon.

Knife Sizes

So, why don’t all hunters just use survival knives if they’re superior? Well, the truth is hunters like to use smaller knives while they hunt because they are more effective for skinning animals than larger knives. You might like a larger knife if you’re just trying to wave it around and impress other people with it. However, real hunters understand that the size of the knife depends on the type of animal you’re hunting and planning to cut.

If you’re going after small animals like birds or squirrels, then you would want a lightweight knife that can easily fit inside of your pocket. If you’re going after bigger animals like moose or deer, then a big durable hunting knife is what you’d want. Overall, make sure you use a knife that you can grip firmly because you don’t want it to slide out of your hand.

​Top Knife Picks

There are many hunting knives on the market to choose from. But there are four in particular that you should look out for the next time you’re shopping for one.

  • The Kalahari Hunting Knife is a great hunting knife for skinning and gutting the remains of the dead animals that you hunted.
  • Another alternative hunting knife is the Bark River Drop Pointed Hunter, which is proven to be effective for cutting most animals.
  • If you are hunting deer, then the Canadian Hunting Knife might be more ideal for you.
  • If you’re hunting smaller animals, choose the Buck Knives Folding Omni Hunter Knife which can easily fit in your pocket.

There are also a variety of survival knives on the market and choosing one of those can be difficult too.

  • The four that are most recommended are the SOG Specialty Knives  
  • Tools Escape Knife
  • The Smith and Wesson Border Guard 2 Rescue Knife
  • The Buck Knives Folding Omni Hunter Knife, and
  • The CRKT Kommer Free Range Hunter Folding Lockback.

Knife handles​

Knife handles are also important to look at when choosing a survival or hunting knife. You can get knives with handles made out of bone, wood, or leather. These are the preferred materials that survivalists and hunters like to have for the handles of their knives because it gives them a superior performance to the cheaper polymer handles. However, not all hunters are looking for these fancier handles in their knives because they are harder to grip when you have sweaty hands.

That is why more hunters are looking for synthetic knife handles because they have more secure grips on them. They are also reliable and durable enough to sustain tough weather and environmental conditions. If you want to remain safe, the handle of your hunting knife should have a guard or finger shield which will prevent your hand and finger from sliding. Otherwise, if your knife handle is too small then you’ll have too much grip on it. This will make your forearm get tired very quickly. And if your knife handle is too big, you will have trouble controlling it with your hand.

Conclusion​

I realize that our guide was concise but it was only meant to give you a bit of push to figure out how to start your search. One fact to keep in mind is that you will never find the truly perfect knife. Each knife comes with some sort of feature that you may not like. Your job is to figure out which knife has the most features you need so you can get yourself out there into the outdoors with the proper tools.​

finestknife
 

Hello there, my name is Scott. I am the author of Finest Knife, a blog that will be more like an in depth guide designed to help the everyday household cook and aspiring chef step up their knife skills.Books about knife skills are usually meant only for chefs and tend to be on the expensive side. My hopes are that this blog can be a comprehensive guide about knives and how to use them that everybody can get access to. As time passes and the site grows, this site will be your constant companion in the kitchen because it will not only improve your skills but also your reputation in the kitchen.