Lost in the woods - Pick one of these knives!

My common sense says that I would want the Farmer, but an experienced survivalist might tell me every reason why one of the other two would be a better choice. Don't know - that's why I asked the question. :)

Heheh--- I wouldn't claim to be any kind of experienced survivalist, but I'm chock full of opinions :D

IMHO, if you are prepared and understand what you need for tools and techniques to keep yourself alive, you increase the chance that you won't need them. A little study and preparation finds you off the pavement with a map and compass, an itinerary and a check in time left with a family member or friend. Knowing where you are going and being able to find your position will keep you from getting lost. If you do, you know that someone will sound the alarm if you don't make contact on time and SAR will come looking for you and, having your itinerary, will find you faster.

I worry more about accidents and injury more than getting lost. I like wayfinding and knowing what peak I am looking at or what stream I am crossing. An evening or two spent studying the area I will be hiking in helps too. A Google Earth fly-though is really cool. So, I generally have an idea where I am and can triangulate my position or use a GPS, etc.

Mishaps like a leg or ankle injury, falls, or impaling myself on a sharp stick are things that worry me. Losing my gear to animals, falls, stream crossings, fire, or theft is another set of scenarios I have run through. Animal attacks are possible, but not on the front burner for me. I do hang my food to keep it from the critters.

Knowing what to do will give you confidence if things come unravelled. Keeping your cool is important. Not compounding your mistakes is a big deal. And having the essentials along with the knowledge will keep you cozy until help arrives. What knife you have is secondary to knowing what to do with it, but you should have one, all the time, every time. I would feel very comfortable with a small SAK on a day hike or short overnighter, but I would want just a little more when further out in the boonies. I hike ultralight and I want to get the absolute maximum from my tools. Those that have multiple uses get more points. For cutting tools I carry a wire saw, single edge razor blade, scalpel blade, a small multi-tool and a larger knife of some sort-- we're talking four or five ounces. Many ultralighters go off with nothing more than a SAK Classic-- I'll go for a little bigger insurance policy, thanks!

The other chapter of survival skills is more towards military or catastrophic conditions-- a plane crash, earthquake, volcanic eruption, storms, civil disorder, or terrorist attacks. It's a hobby for some, a religion for others. I've met a few who had the means to really go all out-- large diesel generators, large caliber firearms, long-term food and water supplies, etc, etc. It runs the gamut from a family getting a 72 hour kit together to guys running around in face paint and BDU's. I'm more on the family preparedness side of the fence :eek:
Current tally:

Paramilitary - 8
Buck 110 - 9
Vic Farmer - 26


I agree with everything you said about being prepared, although my original question had more to do with becoming unexpectedly lost. :eek:
My weigh in.
Buck 110. Saving the blade by using the saw is a mute point if you can sharpen both blades easily on a stone in the field. The saw is nice but neatness doesn't count as much when preparing in survival mode. Time may not allow it anyway.
With the exception of the tweezers and toothpick, which are very useful to have available, the bigger blade of the 110 would, IMO, be more to work with when encountering larger pieces of wood such as what someone would use for shelter.
The fine point of the clip blade as well as the razor honed edge will make a fine scalpel or skinner for small game, the SAK would do fine too.
Bottle opener, screwdrivers, can opener are useless in the middle of nowwhere for the most part and don't seem to hold any advantage over a larger, locking blade that can be mounted as a spear, used to brace something for leverage, (too a degree), etc, weight factor if you need to use it tied to a line for something.
Lastly, I'd rather have a larger blade when rough field sharpening as the amount of metal you'll be likely to remove from some coarse rock will be more than you can spare over time with the smaller SAK blade.
I gotta go with the buck. I haven't done many wilderness survival type things, but I personanlly can't put too much faith in that little saw. -The generally superior steel of the para is a strong point, but it seems a little too delicate to me. The buck is the most fixed blade like, so that's what I'd prefer. (Go bucks!)

I gotta go with the buck. I haven't done many wilderness survival type things, but I personanlly can't put too much faith in that little saw. -The generally superior steel of the para is a strong point, but it seems a little too delicate to me. The buck is the most fixed blade like, so that's what I'd prefer. (Go bucks!)

As a genuine, scarlet and gray-blooded Columbus Ohio Buckeye, I foots it kindly ahind ya.:)

At this moment the Gators are chewing on my beloved Bucks, but it ain't over yet. :(

Anyway, back on topic, Go Buck 110!
DaleW, I understand what you're saying about people who are not prepared, but it happens. Also, I remember the Ralston story. I have paged through his book and looked at the pictures. Unbelievable!

G3, you make some good points about the Buck 110. Additionally, the comfort of the 110 handle for long term use would be a positive.
Of the three choices, I would go with the farmer. just because of the tools it has, you don't plan to get lost, so having those tools just might make the difference. If I could chose any folder, I would have to go with a balisong of some kind, the lock will never fail on you. and a large number of them have comfortable handles. And the ones with a saw and a blade (pretty much a sheath knife, but still a balisong) would be ideal.

Oh, and excuse the thread resurection ;)
The farmer for me, Sak's are great little knives, very compact, and lots of abillity. :thumbup: :D
Current tally:

Paramilitary - 8
Buck 110 - 13
Vic Farmer - 30
Vic Farmer without blinking! the saw, awl and blade would make it a good "compromise" performer.
This is a really tough choice.

I like a big locking blade but the utility of the Farmer is high.

I'll go Farmer this time.

That would be an interesting challenge. Give different
knives to people and have them accomplish a variety of
tasks and see which tool is the overall best.