My favorite hunting spot lays three miles (and 3,000 feet in elevation) up into some of the wildest mountains around. This makes for a tough, rugged hunt along jagged mountain ridges and cliff edges, and just making it there and back in one piece is a success. My goals were much greater though – to harvest a trophy class mule deer and come out with a load of quality boned-out venison to get me through the winter. I rely heavily on my equipment to make this possible and that includes my knife. If my knife fails in the back-country I walk out empty handed.

Carrying this tough knife into the mountains was easy. It comes with a leather sheath that fits it like a glove. Being a hardcore minimalist, I am constantly concerned about space and weight. This knife exceeds my strict requirements; it slips into almost any pocket and its weight is unnoticeable in my pack.

On the second day of my hunt  I was fortunate enough to arrow a huge buck. He had wide antlers and a big body bulging with muscle ready for the oncoming rut. My hunting partner watched as I caped and boned out this huge animal. The buck and I had a hard time not rolling down the hill as I whipped the knife around, stripping meat off his bones. The stoutness of this Lone Wolf knife made dislocating the skull effortless, and the exaggerated radius of the cutting edge made peeling the meat off the bones clean and effortless. To be honest it made peeling the meat off my bones effortless as well – as I slipped the blade through a chunk of shoulder steak, it went right into my index finger. In just over an hour we had our packs loaded with meat and hide and were headed for a nearby stream to wash up.

The Lone Wolf Mountainside Skinner made by Benchmade is hands down the best knife I have ever used. This stout little knife is easy to grip and tough as nails. The Mountainside Skinner has a fixed blade made of top-quality steel that can take a beating and get a lot of cutting done without needing to be resharpened. I was fortunate to have this knife on my recent alpine mule deer hunt.

You can find Lone Wolf knives at www.Benchmade.com. The fixed blade models will cost you around $75. You could say these are Benchmade’s middle-of-the-road knives based on price but the quality is top-notch, only lacking the superfluous exotic wood handles of the higher priced pieces. You have a choice between three different fixed blade models: the Mountainside Caper, Mountainside Drop-Point, and Mountainside Skinner. I really like the Mountainside Skinner, it’s made for the hunter and it won’t let you down.

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