I’m not sure what it is about quality cutting tools, but I love them! I can’t get enough of them! As my beautiful wife loves her shoes and seems to have a different pair for every day of the week and every special occasion that may arise, likewise, I have a multitude of pocket knives, one for every day of the month, in fact! I have my dignified, gentlemanly ones that I take along for a night out on the town, I have my well-dressed Sunday goin’ to church knives, my sitting around in the office knives, my backyard whittling knives, my finely balanced cooking knives, and of course, a plethora of heavy-duty knives that I use out in the wilds for a variety of rugged purposes.
I’ve been collecting, critiquing, and putting knives to the test since I was a kid. Now I’m not some sort of weirdo who has a weapons fetish, and while a knife can certainly be used as a weapon, I’ve always thought of and used knives as an essential tool for living. Think about it, how many things have you had to cut today in which you used a knife or an edged tool of one kind or another? Here’s what I did: I cut the wrapper off a package of bananas, opened my mail and boxes from the Post Office, removed the tags and packing material from things I bought at the store, scraped wax off a table, modified an almost empty bag of coffee, shaved, cut zip ties off computer cables, prepared my food and ate my meals, and many other things that I really didn’t make a mental note of. All that in just a few hours. And, without a knife or edged tool, all those things would have been messy and difficult, and in some cases, impossible to achieve.
The knife is one of the oldest and most essential tools known to humankind. Human beings would have ceased to exist a long time ago if they did not figure out how to create and use sharpened objects for a variety of purposes. I truly believe that this absolute need for quality cutting tools is why so many folks like myself have an unexplainable attraction to possessing many good, dependable knives. It’s literally in our DNA…inherited from our hunting/gathering ancestors. Utilizing edged tools is a primal instinct, much like the desire many have to enjoy the comfort of a warm fire, as fire too, is something we humans have depended on from the start of our existence.
My Top Pick for a Folding Pocket Knife
Folding style pocket knives are everywhere. Every sporting goods or department store, and even gas stations have plenty to choose from. You’ll find them in all shapes, sizes, colors, and blade designs. However, probably about 90% of the pocket knives offered in most stores are little more than rugged looking letter openers…not serious cutting tools designed for serious work. Most pocket knives on the market these days are made from inferior steel, put together with cheap hardware and components, and have blade designs that are just plain silly! Sure, they may look cool and impress your teenage nephews, but they will fail…miserably…when you really need a dependable blade.
Over the years I have used and field-tested dozens upon dozens of pocket knives, and only a few have met my personal, rather strict standards. At the top of the list is the Kershaw Blur series of knives. While working full time as an Alaskan guide a few seasons ago, I used my Blur pocket knife…and only my Blur pocket knife…to completely dress-out and process several blacktail deer, a caribou, and hundreds of salmon…all in one season alone, and that included skinning, gutting, quartering, separating bones, scraping hides, etc. Not to mention, that same knife (pictured in the main photo above) was used all season for the rigorous daily chores that a guide must carry out in the remote backcountry of Alaska. In fact, I wrote Kershaw a letter and told them how impressed I was with their product. In return, Kershaw sent me a brand-new Blur knife in gratitude for taking the time to say thanks. Needless to say, I was quite impressed!
Now, like many knife manufacturers these days, Kershaw has an American made line of products, as well as a line made in Asia. The Blur series of knives that I feature here are made in the USA from the finest, toughest materials, and designed by the legendary Ken Onion. They are thoughtfully created for functional, long-term use. The shape of the blade edge alone is perfectly designed to effortlessly slice through a wide variety of materials with ease, with little labor needed to restore its razor sharpness. Also, the one-handed, speed-assisted opening design is a big help when one is working alone and short on extra hands to help with a chore. There are also Blur models available with a serrated edge, but I’m not fans of serrated blades, for many reasons. More about that in future blog posts. The lightweight handle design is another added bonus of the Blur knives, which makes all day carry very comfortable. And finally, like all Kershaw knives, it has a lifetime warranty.
While there are lots of great knives out there, and I’ll be reviewing more later, the Kershaw Blur is very hard to beat for overall design, quality of materials, functionality, and price. Below are my favorite models. If you’d like to get one for yourself or a knife loving friend, simply click on the photos below.
One final point, (as this is my first official gear review blog post) to be completely transparent, I do receive a small commission for the outdoor products that I review and promote, so please use the links I provide if you’d like to make a purchase. That being said though, I ONLY review and promote products that I have extensively used (and tortured!) myself or that I can 100% stand behind.