Steel for All Seasons: Must-Have Knives for 2015

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posted on July 7, 2015
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Steel Will Druid 200
With its 6-inch-plus blade, this knife is perfect for the hunter who wants one tool to do it all, be it sticking a pig, dressing a deer or chopping kindling for a fire. A strong, thick blade with a full tang extends beyond the composite handle for emergency glass-breaking or hammering of things that need hammering. A strapless leather sheath allows quick and easy removal of this multi-purpose blade when needed. MSRP: $110.

Buck Open Season Folding Skinner
Made with Buck’s standard 440HC stainless steel for excellent corrosion resistance and superior strength, this 33/4-inch skinning blade folds into a handy, 5-inch package. Designed to be opened and closed with one hand, the liner lock is solid, though easily manipulated. Pocket clip attached, sheath included. Thermoplastic (shown) or Dymondwood grips available. MSRP: $82

L.L. Bean Hybrid Hunter Knife
Taking a stab at the unorthodox, this blade has a lot of great features the big-game hunter will find useful. Deep bevel, finger holes and jimping on the spine are great for skinning and caping, while a sharp top edge cuts through hide and hair for gutting. G10 handle material won’t swell or crack, and skeleton design is easy to clean. MSRP: $89.

Gerber Gator Premium Gut Hook
This 4-inch fixed-blade is a classic style upgraded. Premium features include a super-sharp gut hook for easy field-dressing, a full-tang blade, rubberized gator-skin molded grip, premium leather sheath and the made-in-America quality Gerber is known for. Weighing in at 8 ounces, with an overall length of 9 inches, it’s perfect for all-day belt carry. MSRP: $145.

Camillus Tyrant
This little fixed-blade sports 3 inches of super-sharp, ultra-hardened D2 steel coated in carbonitride titanium for a finish that’s as tough as this knife looks. And though the knife is not a skinner by design, the finger groove in the composite handle is ideal for the skinner’s grip. Lanyard tucks away in the handle and leather sheath has a built-in sharpener. MSRP: $76.

Ka-Bar Dozier Folding Hunter
While not as well-known as the USMC Fighting and Utility Knife, this little Ka-Bar has gained its own following among those who’ve carried it. Three-inch blade will handle anything from rabbits to whitetail. Slim design and pocket clip make it an everyday carry knife. Multiple handle colors available, but blaze orange ensures it won’t be lost next to the gut pile. MSRP: $31.

Havalon Piranta
Perhaps the best friend a big-game guide or taxidermist ever had, a Havalon knife is like having multiple knives in one, lightweight package. Flexible blades take the frustration out of cutting around bones, joints and sockets, and replacing the surgically sharp steel when it dulls takes only seconds. Never has the term “zip through an animal” been so spot-on. MSRP: $55.

Real Avid TAC-EDC
Though its tanto point screams tactical, the acute angle on this multi-purpose knife is perfect for getting through tough hide or for precision work on small game and birds. It’s also the only folder in the bunch with a removable side-mounted clip. Quick-flip opener and thumb stud allow for easy deployment of the black-oxide-coated, 3-inch blade. MSRP: $29.

Joker Bull Horn Pocket Folder
Handcrafted in Spain, this elegant folder is just the ticket for taking apart a squirrel or breasting out a big mallard drake. Slim 3-inch clip-point blade locks tight and is ideal for finer, intricate cuts. Wearing a beautiful, high-polished bull-horn handle, this little beauty is a more traditional knife that’ll want to live in your pocket full-time. MSRP: $67.

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