Morakniv CompanionSilky Pocket Boy Folding Saw

Knives, machetes, axes and saws are essential parts of bugging out and survival. They can be used to make firewood, make tinder, make shelter, make a place for a shelter or camp, obtain food, cut up food, cut rope and cord and self defense.

First thing is safety. Safety is huge when you are bugging out. One little cut can get infected making a potentially huge health hazard. You will be doing hazardous tasks more often that you would normally at home so your chance of injury increases. This topic always speaks to our pride and we push it away. When bugging out, there is not a doctor or ambulance right around the corner. Help may not be coming at all. If you are carrying a knife, tool or weapon, you should have a first aid kit and knowledge sufficient enough to treat yourself in case of an accident.

You should have PPE or personal protective equipment when bugging out. Always protect your eyes with safety glasses or goggles, protect your hands with leather work gloves and cut resistant gloves, protect your head from injury and sun with a hat, long sleeve shirts and pants to protect your body from cuts and scrapes and good solid soled shoes to protect your feet as you walk and hike. It is always a good idea to have a tourniquet just in case. They do not add any additional weight and having one is a whole lot better than not having one. Each member of your family or team should have sufficient first aid and PPE.


A knife is a very useful tool. There are several different types of knife points, each for a specific task. Such as: clip point, tanto point, trailing point, drop point, needle point to just name a few. Each type of knife blade has a specific grind of the edge of the blade and a specific type of material that it is made out of for its specific purpose. For example, to process food you should have a stainless steel knife. It prohibits rust and with proper maintenance can be used for other things as well, but it can sometimes can require more maintenance than a carbon steel knife used for other tasks such as making tinder and cutting cord.

What knife (knives) to carry is a personal question. You should carry knives that are easy for you to use and maintain. Knives add weight to your pack in a hurry, so choose wisely. Choose knives that have multiple uses or that you would be able to use for multiple tasks so if one is broken or lost, you can still do that necessary tasks to survive.

A Morakniv is a great addition to a pack. They are good quality and come in many styles. I chose a Morakniv Companion heavy duty knife made of stainless steel. It is a very sturdy construction for heavy tasks and has a fine grind for fine tasks, comes with a sturdy made plastic sheath that doesn’t come off my belt easily. The handle of the knife is comfortable and resists slipping down to the blade. The handle and sheath are brightly colored and can be easily seen if dropped.

I purchased the Light My Fire Morakniv with a ferrocerium rod in the handle for my belt to use in conjunction with my machete kit and the Morakniv Companion for my pack. They are lightweight and inexpensive. I also just purchased the Morakniv Eldris (picture to come later). It is also brightly colored and stainless steel but has a much smaller blade for even more fine tasks. The Morakniv Bushcraft knife is great as well.
Folding knives are great, but they are tucked in a pocket when needed. This is fine for normal every day life, however; not very handy when you have a pack on or multiple layers. A fixed blade knife allows for much easier access, less likely to get set down and lost and less chance of cutting yourself while putting it away.


Machetes are handy for clearing grass and brush away for a shelter, obtaining firewood, batoning firewood into smaller kindling and making a shelter. Did I mention safety? Lets mention it again. Safety glasses, cut resistant gloves and a tourniquet at bare minimum.

I started out with a great machete, a Schrade SCH45. It was a stainless steel blade machete with a bowie knife shape. It really took a beating batoning firewood and had a great grippy handle even with wet hands. It was heavy but I was able to do heavy tasks and fine tasks with it. The blade wasn’t too long and didn’t prohibit my movement. I lashed my Light My Fire Morakniv to it and I was totally satisfied until I discovered the Tops 170 machete.  The Tops knives have a great micarta grippy handle. The machete came with a fantastic sheath. The machete blade was a little long, but made up for that in weight. It was a full pound lighter than the Schrade I was carrying. I replaced my Schrade with the Tops.

The Tops 170 sheath allowed a pocket for my Silky Pocket Boy saw and another pocket for a Fallkniven sharpener and some tinder. I lashed my Light My Fire Morakniv to it with a couple of ranger bands (inner tube cut up in rings to make bands). This setup works for me, but my younger, taller, stronger son kept his Schrade set up which is totally acceptable. You have to find and carry the gear that works for you.

Axes and Tomahawks

There are tasks that are a little too heavy for a machete like handling a bit larger firewood or clearing a bit larger brush. You don’t have to fell a tree for firewood, but there is an outside chance that you may have to remove one or get a bit larger firewood with way less effort. A Husqvarna ax is hand forged and will serve you well.

For a bit less weight and for smaller firewood a tomahawk is great and has a dual purpose for self defense if necessary. Cold Steel makes very nice tomahawks like the Frontier Hawk and the Trail Hawk. We purchased a CRKT RMJ Woods Chogan and a Cold Steel Rifleman’s Hawk but did not like those as well.


Carrying a saw can dramatically reduce effort in obtaining firewood and clearing brush. We are carrying a Silky Pocket Boy saw in our machete kits. It is lightweight, has a bright colored handle that has two position settings. The blade makes all the cut on the pull toward you to reduce effort and the blades are replaceable.

During our research this particular saw reviewed better than the Bahco Laplander at 40 less strokes for sawing the same diameter wood in half. Less effort for the same amount of work is key here
See our maintenance and care page for tips on maintaining the above gear. It is very important to make your gear last.