Two yards away, a massive bear is working its way through your bag of provisions. Your trail mix and nuts and instant mac are strewn out across the ground, and your candy bars and dehydrated food is in ruins. Your favorite beef jerky torn with nothing left but the wrapper, and all the ingredients for s’mores are now being eaten with a fervor. Your stomach rumbles as it falls with a sense of dread. You wait it out until the bear decides it’s time to move on before assessing the situation.
As you look over the chaos and the rubbish, you think… I backpacked in and I’m miles from any road, any person, and I’m out of food. Your mind races as panic sets in, clouding your thoughts.
Now, back to reality for a moment… One glorious question remains and I’m curious if you have an answer for me… What would you do to survive?
Next, I would gather what’s left then lay out everything I brought with me out before me, so I could think strategically about my next move. I’d see a few important pieces still remain, like my survival blade, for instance, which may be the most important piece of equipment for this situation. Being that you’re fresh from a night’s fast and out of food, packing up and hiking back to civilization may not be within reason, so you must acquire food the old fashioned way.
Either hunt or fish or forage. Those are your options. All of which can be difficult for a modern person, which is why it’s important to come prepared. You can create a fishing pole or a simple sharpened stick, but you can’t create a reliable blade out of thin air. Native Americans employed chipped flint rock to cut things, but flint is only found in specific areas around the country. So moral is, always be prepared for the wild world. I never step foot in real wilderness without a durable blade. In the end, it could mean the difference between life or death.
A recent test blade was graciously sent over by Fallkniven, the Swedish knife maker, and it meant the difference for me. I had the pleasure of working with their NL5 Idun blade, which is a very thick VG10 steel blade with a beautifully refined leather handle, which comes with a lovely viking-inspired sheath. The Idun was inspired by Norse mythology, as Idun was the goddess of fertility, and as Fallkniven explains, she was responsible for guarding the apples that ensured the gods eternal youth.
The NL5 Idun blade is a laminated 5mm thick blade forged with an edge of VG10 steel center and is all-stainless 420J2 steel, which essential means that it’s a big beastly blade that can be sharpened over and over for a lifetime without wasting away. The leather handle is layered, yet smooth, with a perfect flush and ergonomic grip. The sheath is a thick stunning leather that hugs the blade and provides a nice way to hang the knife on a belt.
Upon first impressions, I was blown away by how pretty the workmanship is, seeing immediately how much pride Fallkniven’s team has for their work, as well as how damn good they are at what they do. After working with the NL5 in the field, I came to appreciate how fine their steel keeps its edge. I didn’t have to sharpen it until after months of hard use. What makes this blade special is more than how well it’s made, but it’s how affordable it is for the quality that you’re getting for the price. Fallkniven’s blades aren’t the cheapest on the market, but they are serious investments for serious outdoorsmen who care about surviving whatever Nature throws at them. This is a blade that can last a lifetime with proper care.
If you would like to learn more about Fallkniven, click here.
Article written by and Fallkniven knife photos by © Brandon Elijah Scott
(Main photo by 104815519@N08 via Flickr)