2 replies [Last post]
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 10
New to hunting/camping/fishing, need a bit of assistance with knives and tents.

Hello everyone,


I'm in the process of getting my very first camping gear collection together. I've got the extreme basics left over from my Civil war re-enacting days(plates,pots/pans,cups,silverware) but I'm lacking in just about everything else!


I'm trying to find a good(but more importantly, cheap) A frame tent to start my collection properly. Here's the kicker though; all the A-tents I've found have either had no bottom(a fatal flaw in the Northwest's rainy seasons) or some other flaw. My first choice was a Stansport Scout Backpack tent I found on Amazon, but several reviews mentioned it was not waterproof.


I'm also looking for a good all-around survival knife. I know the look of a knife shouldn't factor in, but I can't help myself. I love the KABAR and Bowie knives, but I haven't found any solid reviews on either(except knife forums).


I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas as to what I'm looking for. Ideally, an A-frame tent made of waterproof material(with a floor!), and a good knife I can use to prep food, fillet fish... basically anything that might require a knife's attention while out in the wilderness.


I may also need other gear, what do you guys think? All I have now past that basic stuff I mentioned is some surplus military gear. Webbing, plenty of pouches, and a waterproof rucksack. A good start, I think.

I'm going with

several friends, and we're all urban born and bred. I'm the only one making a serious effort to learn how to survive in the wild, so I feel it's my responsibility to look after the others, especially since I'm the one pushing for camping in the first place!


Any help is appreciated, and any advice as well. I know next to nothing about true camping, I've only ever been to KOA's and the like. So anything you feel could help, please share!


Cheers, and good hunting,


WesternHunter's picture
Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2374

Personally I think Ka-Bar fighting knives and other large bowies knives were introduced and adopted for one purpose and one purpose only......as a close quarters weapon of last resort on the battle field.  If you're planning on engaging in hand to hand combat or going somewhere where you might end up in that situation then those would be great knives to have on you. They also serve as great makeshift lawn and garden tool as well. 

For hunting, fishing, or any other outdoor recreational activity where hand to hand combat isn't the normal course of activity I think Kbars are too large, very cumbersom, and useless knives. For camping, hunting and general outdoor use you should not need anything with a blade longer than 3.75 inches long.  In fact my general all around blade for things like camping and fishing is the blade on my old Leatherman Wave muti-tool.  For most camp chores any good 3 inch to 3.75 inch bladed locking folder will serve you well.  For field dressing and quartering biggame I use nothing more than a 4 inch bladed Rapala fillet knife and one of my various folding lockback knives that I own (Buck 110, or Gerber Magnum LST, etc.).  There are lots of great reasonably priced easy to carry and use folding knives out there.  Buck, Gerber, Leatherman, etc all make good stuff.

For other camping gear I'd go with more modern light weight stuff.  You sound like you prefere the traditional old fashioned heavy sturdy stuff.  That's cool and fine, but it will limit you to staying at the KOA camp grounds.  It just all depends on what type of camping you want to do.  Typical campground camping you don't need anything fancy, good tent, 2 burner coleman stove, lantern, sleeping bags, coolers, camp chairs, etc.  Backcountry camping where you pack and hike into, you will want less gear that's more modern and lighter weight and packable.  Backcountry eating is also a much different criteria too.


WesternHunter's picture
Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2374
camp knife

Also forgot to throw out there that you really can't go wrong with any of the various Victorinox models of so-called Swiss Army Knives.  They often get overlooked these days by sportsman, bushcraft wannabes, and Bear Gryls imitators. I myself sometimes tend to overlook these useful red folding knives, but I always seem to have one burried deep in pack somewhere when I head outdoors. I own a few and have lost a few over the last couple decades. They are excellent quality, useful, practical, and readily obtainable knives.  They may not be tacticool like a lot of other useless gear being marketed today, but they serve perfectly well if you allow them to. Pick one that has the tools you think you will need. Personally I prefere the Tinker model for basic camping, hiking, and backpacking chores.  Other practical and useful models are the older standard issue Soldier 61 and newer current issue Soldier 08 knives. Just keep in mind when buying an outdoor knife that basic outdoor/backpacking/camping cutting chores are no different today than they were 100 years ago. 

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