I've hacked with and owned both. You won't get a better chopper, as far as big blades go, than a Kukri - any GOOD Kukri. And without a doubt the CS Gurkha Kukri is an awesome chopper.
I used a Trailmaster for chopping once, and found that the guard's edge on the back of the blade started digging into my hand, between my thumb and forefinger - after a short while it really started to hurt. From then on I came to the decision that a guard protruding on the top (back), of a knife is unecessary, and something that shouldn't be there. That's why I like the guard on the SRK, for example. I still think the Trailmaster is a great blade, I just wish it had a guard like the SRK.
Tuff, you may wish to consider getting a Panawal Khukuri from Gurkha House. My experience with this chopper has been very good. Also, at around $80, it's probably going to be your most "bang for the buck."
It chops and chops and chops, and holds its edge very well. No discomfort to the hand.
I don't think you can go wrong with one of these.
I don't know if that will come thru as a link, or not. There is also a link to Ghurka house on the home page of the Forums.
I don't work for, neither am I related to, anyone at Ghurka House. I just believe that they supply one hell of a chopper for the money.
I agree about the GH khukuris. Check em out,they`re a heck of a lot of knife for the money. They`re hand forged,ground,handled and everything. I have a Bhojpure,it`s a bit shorter than the CS but much thicker with a polished buffalo horn handle and brass fittings. Overall polish is good and the grind is very nice. I`d put it up against a CS anyday,I`d be willing to bet it holds an edge just as long and is twice as strong. They have a sort of slightly dished crossection that would be next to impossible to grind it pretty much has to be forged to shape and they`re zone hargened to make them stronger and more vibration resistant. The CS might be better if you cut strictly light stuff (although a $15 machette would be better yet IMO) but the GH or HI khukuris will blow it away in serious chopping. Marcus
I own a CS Trailmaster and CS Gurkha Light Kukri. If I were you I would forego the Trailmaster in favor of the Kukri for serious use. THe Kukri's slimmer yet longer blade gives you an awesome cutting slicing effect w/ out binding up in the wood (as thicker blades do). Another thing to consider w/ High Carbon blades is the Blade coating. The Kukri's coated blade is a godsent in the field. The reason I never used my Trailmaster is because the High Carbon blade instantly starts to rust in humid enviroments (No good for field use!).
I can second what Defender says about the CS Trailmaster rusting very easily. Mine is a "carbon V" version. One night in the North West Territories I forgot it in a log and by morning it was beginning to pit. I didn't have a guard problem, though. The knife is excellent for woodcraft, although I don't think it can't penetrate like a kukri. If you need serious clearing power for trails etc, the khukri may be better. If you need more knife for chopping and splitting etc, you probably need an ax.
I have both the CS Trailmaster and kukuri. Except for uses that require a long non-curved edge (such as preparing food) the kukuri is superior. The spine to edge distance is wider so the blade expands more gradually, which makes the kukuri a better slicer. As well the belly and recurve greatly enhances slicing.
For chopping the shear mass and blade design makes the kukuri better. Again, blade geometry helps penetration.