If you were stranded in the wilderness with one tool, what would it be? Perhaps, a pot? Or maybe a fire-starter and map? If you answered anything other than a knife, you’re probably not suited for the outdoors – or survival, for that matter. A knife is an invaluable tool that can be utilized in a variety of situations. It’s surprisingly versatile, compact and easy to manipulate. Here are eight ways to use a knife.
1. As a shovel: A strong, sturdy knife can be used to dig fire pits, gather tubers for food, and carve out distress signals in the ground.
2. As a weapon: This should be obvious, but a survival knife can be used as defense, in the event of an emergency. It can also help you hunt game and harvest fish.
3. As first aid: If you ever injure yourself, use your tool to cut improvised bandages or drain blisters (with a sterilized tip of course).
4. As a wood splitter: A survival knife can substitute a hatchet in some situations. With a mallet (piece of wood) and a flat edged blade, it’s easy to split wood into halves. Just pound the keen edge into a log.
5. As a hammer: The sharp blade isn’t the only useful part of a survival knife. Its butt end, also known as the pommel, is an efficient hammering tool to drive stakes in the ground.
6. As a gear modifier: The longer you stay outdoors, the more likely you will have to make adjustments to your clothing or equipment. If it gets too hot, for example, use your knife to cut through the fabric of your clothing.
7. As a stake: Although a knife can be used to drive stakes into the ground, it can also double as a stake itself. If you are short on supplies, use the tool to anchor a shelter or hang a bag.
8. As an actual knife: Cut, slice, dice, chop. A knife can do it all. You can use it to flay out ribbons of bark for fire, or even to carve out other, more specialized survival tools.