Posts in the get outdoors category

Survival with Bandanas

When I am out in the wild for more than a day I always think about survival. I only want to carry a certain amount of weight. When you are walking around in the wilderness weight is important. You only want to burn the calories you have to and at the end of the day you don't want to be to tired to do want you need to do to set camp and eat. Each survival tool I choose to carry is important. The more tasks they can accomplish is a factor on what to include. Bandanas are perfect. They are lightweight and have many uses in survival situations.

Bandanas are cheap. Because of their lightweight you can carry a couple if you want. I use my bandanas for many things. They are of course great sweatbands and head cover to prevent heat exhaustion. When not on my head I may tie a bandana to prevent sunburn or keep warm in cold weather. I soak my bandana in water and wet tie it around my neck to keep cool. When in camp I Pick up my pot, wash my dishes, and wash up with my bandana.

I have used my bandana to tie items on my belt loop or my pack. I tie my sierra cup on my pack with my bandana. Bandanas are usually a little lighter than those expensive clips and utilizing items from home saving money.

Bandana and Survival

A few years ago I was in a pretty good dust storm and used my bandana as a dust mask. It worked great. Regularly I wrap a stone in my bandana tie a cord to it and throw it over a limb. This is a time savor when making shelters. I have also used my bandana to make cordage. I rarely take a tent, usually just a blue tarp. I can throw a tarp up quick at the end of the day.

I have used a bandana to filter water. There are better filters but a bandana isn't bad and is better than nothing, especially if the water is muddy. I have problems sometimes with my feet on the trail. I usually have moleskin for those hotspots but I have cut up my bandana and put them on those hotspots. Blisters in the wilderness suck!

I use my bandanas to clean my glasses and my camera lens. When I forage for food I use my bandana to hold berries and such.

There have been times when I am out that I have used pieces of my bandana for firearm cleaning patches and wiping them down with gun oil. I have black powder friends that have used bandanas as bullet patches for muzzleloaders.

I have never had to do this, knock on wood, but a bandana makes a nifty sling for an injured arm or wrist. A bandana would make a great tourniquet if needed. You can also us a bandana as a sling to throw a rock at game. I have never done this either.

A few other things I have never done with a bandana but could if I wanted to: Waist Pack, Mark a trail, eye patch, ear muffs and a hobo pack. Bandanas can be used as toilet paper but I am thinking this would be a one time use. People report using a bandana as a signal flag by tying the bandana onto a stick.

For me a bandana is a must have on my pack, in my bug out bag and in my survival gear. A bandana is as important as rope or duct tape. But best of all a Bandanas best use always is to catch a sneeze.

Posted by Don Uhlir on 23 November, 2015 get outdoors, survival | 0 comments | Read more →

NASA Released Truly Breathtaking New Footage Of Earth in 4K

Videos like this are important to see because they open our eyes to the broader perspective and glorious creation that we live in. If you're ever feeling down with all of the small things in life (which happens to us all too often!), pause and remember the sheer beauty and wonder that surrounds us. 
Posted by Don Uhlir on 13 August, 2015 get outdoors | 1 comment | Read more →

Pinterest Fun

These are some of the best things we've seen on pinterest. Even if you're not on it, check them out.
Posted by ES Team on 24 January, 2015 camping, fishing, get outdoors, hobbies, humor, hunting, self defense | 0 comments | Read more →

Hike the Appalacian Trail

Your guide to Hike the Appalacian Trail

35 Reasons to Hike the Appalachian Trail

Now that you've reviewed the top thirty five reasons to hike you need to check out the Extremely Sharp Camping section  to get your gear! 

A wonderful infographic about 35 reasons to hike the appelation trail by the geniouses at 97thfloor.

Discover why so many hikers visit the Appalacian Trail every year and secrets along the trail. It takes 5 months to complete and only 13% who attempt it finish. It spans from the state of Maine to Georgia. The trail is marked by about 160,000 white trail markers. 

Posted by ES Team on 21 January, 2015 get outdoors, hobbies, how-to | 0 comments | Read more →

Is that a Sign or a Trail Blaze?

Have you ever been hiking and wondered, is that a Sign or a Trail Blaze?

(A trial blaze is a mark the direction of the trail. In older times a tree could be blazed by hatchet chops, these days it is often paint on trees in a consistant shape and color for the particular path.) The following infographic is pretty humerous for anyone who has spent a good amount of time hiking and been confused by the "signs" left as trail markings. Enjoy!

Signs and Blazes for the Modern Outdoorsman

Now that you've had a good laugh, head over to the store and grab a knife for your next hike or maybe a machete to help clear your path. If you prefer to shop with family owned buisiness and support local American businesses, you'll love our site!

Posted by ES Team on 20 January, 2015 get outdoors, humor | 0 comments | Read more →

Knife Sharpening Techniques

Need to sharpen a knife? We'll help you out with some tips. Knives are an intimate part of our family and our lifestyle, so we're always happy to help out.

Sharpening a knife is sometimes perceived as the most difficult knife care task; and it probably is, but only until you learn a few tips that we'll share below.

General Knife Sharpening Instructions

Modern stainless steel is very hard and, when sharpened properly, will hold a good edge for a very long time. When sharpening a knife you must have a high quality sharpener that features a rough stock removal surface (preferably diamond abrasive) and a finishing surface of hard stone or ceramic abrasive. The diamond and ceramic materials will cut away the steel on the blade's cutting surface easily as these materials are much harder than steel. This makes it easier on you too. A hard stone will also perform this task, but the stone is only slightly harder than the steel and so this requires more effort on your part, although we find the extra time somewhat relaxing at times. 

Pro tip: The specific angle is not as important as keeping a constant angle.

  • Picking your angle: When using the rough grit stone use a shallower angle than when using the fine stone. That is, grind the (usually) sorry factory edge to a shallow angle with the rough grit stone and I want to stress here that there is no special way to do this because you are just removing useless stock from the blade. Just grind one side of the blade until it is ground down enough.
  • What is enough? Well enough is defined like this: Once you have ground the blade down enough (maintaining the same angle all the while) to have touched the cutting edge, start to test the edge on the opposite side of the blade by running your finger nail at a 90 degree angle to the opposite edge moving from the back of the blade towards the edge. Why? Well you are trying to find the curled edge (or burr) created by the grinding down of the first edge. Once you have this curled lip along the edge from tip to tang then turn the knife over and begin grinding the other side until you have the same curled lip for that side. Once you are done you should have a roughly ground edge with a fairly shallow angle.
  • The final touches: Now take your fine grit stone (at least 400 grit or finer) and raise the angle of the blade you just ground down by just a little more and using moderate pressure make a single cutting stroke maintaining as much as possible the same angle down the stone making sure to sharpen the whole length of the edge on the stroke. Now after one single stroke turn the knife over and repeat the same process. Do all this slowly and deliberately. Repeat this about 6 times and then begin to lighten the pressure on the blade as it strokes the stone. At about the 10th or 12th repetition about only the weight of the blade should be pressing on the stone.
  • Testing the sharpness: After step 3 test the sharpness (carefully) by cutting a sheet of paper or (even more carefully) trying to shave a few hairs off your arm. If you followed step 2 faithfully you should have an almost razor sharp edge. If not then re-read step 2 and do it again from the course stone. Step 2 is most important. Step 3 actually does the sharpening.
  • The more highly polished an edge the better it cuts. "Teeth" does not a razor edge make.
  • IMPORTANT! Do not use water or oil of any kind on any stone to sharpen your knife. In fact if you have been using some liquid on your stone, wipe it off as best you can or get a new stone which has not been tainted with such a substance. I know this goes against years and years of trusted advise from friends, fathers, aunts, uncles, grandfathers and etc.... Trust me on this one.
Need a new sharpening stone, diamond sharpening rod or even a "system" that will always give you an incredible edge? Check out our selection of knife sharpening accessories. We use every one of these in our stores, in the Extremely-Sharp factory and in our personal lives. Of course, if you have any questions, just send us a quick message and we'll get back to you.

    Posted by ES Team on 12 January, 2015 get outdoors, how-to | 0 comments | Read more →

    2012 Backpack Update Three Weeks and Counting

    Camping Kitchen Packed

    My Son and I spent the last three days getting all out gear and food together so we could pack our backpacks. That way when it is time to go all we have to do is pick up and go.

    We are now down to three weeks and counting. Our leaving date is set for labor day weekend. Our destination is still up in the air. We know we are going to the Chattahoochee National Forest in North Georgia. We have decided on one of three trails. The trails of choice are the Benton Makaye, the Bartram or the Duncan Ridge. I have packed some of the Benton Makaye. The attraction to the Benton Makaye are on two levels: difficulty and isolation. We are looking for a challenge. The Benton Makaye has much less foot traffic than many of the other long distance trails. With that being said the Bartram and Duncan Ridge have things to offer. Before a decision is made more research is necessary.

    Here is a picture of my kitchen. It starts with a titanium pot with a cup that acts as a lid. Everything that I cook with fits in the pot. My esbit stove and esbit fuel for 5 days fits in the pot. Also inside my kitchen is a columbia river spork tool, a scrubber and my blastmatch fire starter. I always bring a lighter because I like to eat. But I like to test my survival skills when I am out and that is where the blastmatch comes in. I bring tinder and I find tinder and I practice my fire starting skills. Back to my kitchen. Everything fits in the pot and the pot fits in a mesh bag. Everything weighs in at around a half a pound.

    GORP Good Ole Raisins and PeanutsI wrote in an earlier post about my GORP (good ole raisin and peanuts). This is the recipe I used this time. It always changes.

    • raisins
    • Cranraisins blueberry juice
    • smoked almonds
    • roasted peanuts
    • banana hips
    • M & Ms
    • M & Ms peanut
    • coconuts 

      I like to use cashews but this trip they were cost prohibitive. I usually make a sweet and a spicy gorp but this year I am trying to keep costs at a minimum so we are taking sweet gorp. GORP is easy to make. You get your ingredients, mix them together and out the gorp in ziplocks. When I am on the trail I always have a small bag of gorp at hands reach whenever I want it.

      We also made some jerky in the dehydrator. Jerky is a great snack on the trail and a nice addition to lunch which is usually Gorp cheese and jerky. This is the recipe I put together.


      • brown sugar
      • dales sauce
      • Worcester sauce
      • adobo powder
      • ancho chili pepper powder
      • A few secret spices (a guy has to have a few secrets). 

      I like a semi sweet jerky that also has a little bite to it.

      Finished Packs for Hiking

      Here are our packs ready to go.

      Future Backpacker

      My Granddaughter was in the mix and was sure her help was needed. She is my future backpacker. I started taking my son when he was around 8 years old.

      Father Son Backpackers Ready to go

      Here we are in our packs. Waiting for September. You can see that "One Arm Don" is not just a nickname!

      That's all I have for now.

      One Arm Don
      Posted by ES Team on 03 December, 2014 ES family, get outdoors, hobbies | 0 comments | Read more →

      8 gifts for Hunters

      Gifts for Hunters

      What are the top gifts for Hunters?  We put together a great list for you to make shopping easy. It can be hard to shop for people and know what they would like. This list can be used for general

      1. Hunting knife

      Gerber Metolius guthook knife

      We love knives. A Hunter considers a quality knife as an ESSENTIAL. Most keep several various ones close by, but a new quality hunting knife is a great gift for any hunter.

      We recommend this Gerber Knife if you don't know which to pick.  However, ESknives has a large selection of Hunting knives if you want to find the perfect one.

      A fixed guthook knife from Gerber's Metolius line. Black glass filled nylon handles with black sure grip rubber overmold. The handle gives a good solid grip which you kNow is essential when you are using the guthook.

      2. Camo

      Every hunter needs camouflage. We don't sell any. But it's up on our list because hunters want it. Feel free to make recommendations for good places in the comments if you have a great source.

      3. Crossbows

      Crossbow Turkey Hunting

      Crossbows often have add on features that you can purchase. If you know a hunter who has a bow, try to find out what they have and grab some extras for them to use.  Or if they have a basic crossbow you can get them one that will allow some new features for them to try.

      4. Multi tool

      SOG multi tool

      The uses are endless for a good multi tool. A week after you receive your first one you wonder how you ever lived without it.

      The one here that we recommend as a gift is from SOG and has some awesome features. SOG lightweight design ensures a comfortable, safe, easy use multi tool. Driven by an exclusive interlocking gear system, SOG's patented compound leverage technology is a legend in folding tools. The S62-N features removable, pivoting handle covers that improve hand comfort and allow for additional pressure on tough jobs.

      You'll feel proud to give such a nice gift.

      5. Gerber Knife Set  

      Gerber Knife Set

      ESknives has several packages ready to ship to you. Check out our Gerber package.

      Includes the Gerber Freehand Multi-ToolThe Gerber Metolius Guthook and  the Gerber Metolius Caper.

      The Gerber Metolius Caper features full tang construction with a Razor Sharp 3.5" High carbon Surgical Stainless Steel Blade. The nylon handle that fits comfortably and securely in your hands thanks to a soft but grippy overmold.

      The Gerber Freehand multi-tool components include: Needle Nose Pliers, fine edge blade, serrated blunt nose blade, V-cut wire cutters, Fiskars scissors, cross point screwdriver, small flat blade screwdriver, medium flat blade screwdriver, industrial driver, bottle opener, can opener, ruler, laynard ring.  Comes with a Molle Compatible Sheath. Tool is made in the USA.

      6. Backpack to easily keep supplies in for the Hunt

      All that gear needs to go somewhere. This backpack fits in well with camo gear to not give you away.  The many compartments will hold your knives, snacks, water, Compass, extra layers, fire starter, multi tools, and all that other gear that comes in handy on a hunt.

      7. Spotting Scope

      You can rely on a spotter to provide you the most bright, crisp, clear images combined with High Definition color contrast at powers higher than most binoculars can provide. Our spotting scope from Barska is waterproof and fog proof. The variable zoom magnifications allow you to lock on to your subject then zoom in for greater detail.

      No matter what you are hunting, a spotter is a great item to add to your gear.    

      8. Skinning knives

      After a kill, you need to skin the animal. A good non slip handle is essential when choosing a knife for the job. This set of 3 from Turkey Creek includes 6-1/2" overall small hunter with 3" blade, 9" overall guthook hunter with 4" guthook blade, and 11" overall cleaver with 6" blade. Knives feature matte finish 440 stainless steel (3.1mm thick) bead blasted grey blade.  

      What would you add to our list?

      Posted by ES Team on 23 November, 2014 get outdoors, hobbies, holidays | 0 comments | Read more →

      Extremely-Sharp and Big Chiefs

      ESKNIVES and Big Chiefs ESKNIVES has been helping Big Chiefs for several years. We are proud to help them out.

      Big Chiefs ESKnives

      "Big Chiefs was started in 2008 in an effort to help out kids that are considered at-risk.  The idea was conceived by a few substitute teachers while having lunch.  There was much discussion on the decline or absence of respect toward authority figures, especially by a certain group.  The discussion turned from complaining into an idea session on how to help instead of how to criticize.

      Big Chiefs At Risk kids

      The first step was to get with full-time teachers and find out which students could or would benefit from any kind of program that centered on respect, hard work, and fun.  The most we have had were 30 kids and 20 volunteers, and because of drastic reductions in donations that number fell to 18 kids in 2012.

      Big Chiefs Teachers

      We take the kids camping, hiking, fishing and do projects like building bird houses and feeders.  Other projects include building holiday baskets and delivering meals.  The largest project is what we call Firewood for the Poor.  There have been landowners locally that have had logging crews come in and make messes of their property.  We go in and cut into firewood the trees that were left behind and down by the loggers.  We do not cut standing timber." Big Chiefs is what we look for when sponsoring organizations. They are small group of guys that just want to help kids. The kids are their main focus. We need more of that. We at ESKNIVES tip our hats to the guys at Big Chiefs.

      Big Chiefs ESKnives Team Up

      Posted by ES Team on 18 November, 2014 ES family, get outdoors, hobbies | 0 comments | Read more →

      Mosquito repellents: what's fact or myth? (infographic)

      Elderberries Mosquito Repellent
      Do Mosquito's long for your sweet blood?
      Don't stop being a sweet person, but do try some of our tips to keep them off you on your next camping trip:

      When selecting where to pitch your tent, place the tent entrance facing into the wind to discourage mosquitos from congregating.

      Avoid mosquitoes havens: don't camp near wet or swampy areas. Wear neutral and light colors while backpacking and hiking. There is some evidence that mosquitoes are attracted to darker colors more than lighter colors as well as contrasts in light and dark. Light colors may also make ticks more visible that might crawl onto you.
      If you don't like to use mosquito repellents: try the leaves from elderberry bushes! Just crush & rub them on your body or place them in your clothing.  
      Mosquito Magnet Infographic
      Mosquito repellents: what's fact or myth?
      Posted by ES Team on 15 November, 2014 camping, get outdoors | 0 comments | Read more →
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      • Weekly Knife Giveaway - Claim your Entry

        We're giving away a knife every week through the end of April. Enter today and then bookmark this page to make it easy to claim your additional entries every week.  Read more →

      • Survival with Bandanas

        When I am out in the wild for more than a day I always think about survival. I only want to carry a certain amount of weight. When you are walking around in the wilderness weight is important. You only... Read more →