Because a knife is an essential item for hikers (one of The Essentials in the Hiking Lady Backpacking Checklist), I’ve been testing various knives to find some good lightweight, high quality options to use on the trail.
SOG manufactures a range of specialty knives and tools, and their Aegis model has a lot of features that make it a good option for hikers. The company was named after an elite military group that handled covert operations during the Vietnam War, and the products live up to their namesake by being highly innovative and well designed.
- Lightweight. The SOG Aegis weighs just 3.1 ounces, which is a welcome relief for those of us who are always looking for ways to cut down pack weight.
- Quality blade. The 3.5 inch blade easily cut through a 0.5 inch tree branch. It was dependable on the trail when I cut open an apple, trimmed a strap off of my backpack, and simulated some emergency uses such as cutting through a rope, a tree branch, and rubber on a pair of boots.
- One handed and spring assisted opening. When you’ve only got one free hand because the other is loaded with gear, a GPS, a rope, or even a snack, you can easily open the knife due to this innovative feature. This can be switched off for additional safety.
- Good value. High quality knives can get pricey, and the Aegis retails for $93.25. For a blade of this quality to retail below $100 is impressive. This one will last a lifetime, and I’m happy to say that the manufacturer has a lifetime warranty on it!
- Quick open blade may be dangerous. SOG has definitely done a good job of adding a safety feature to prevent against accidental openings of the knife. However, some hikers may be concerned that if they forget to flip the safety switch to green, the knife could accidentally open in your pocket. I know some of us can get a little dazed and confused after hours or even days on the trail, so even this added safety protection may not be enough. I found it to be very safe to use, but just giving you all a heads up.
- Overall Length: 8.25 inches
- Blade Length: 3.5 inches
- Blade Style: Straight edge. The Aegis is also manufactured with a partially serrated edge (not tested).
- Weight: 3.1 ounces
- Blade Type: AUS-8 Stainless Steel
- Price: MSRP $93.25/$114 for the Black TiNi finish on the blade, which apparently increases durability.
- Other features: Reversible pocket clip.
For a high quality, lightweight folding knife that will last a lifetime, the SOG Aegis is a good choice for hikers and backpackers. And a fun quick fact: I was curious to know why the knife was named “Aegis”…turns out that in Greek, Aegis means “shield or protection”. This knife definitely would act as a nice mental shield on the trail… when I have it in my pocket I have more peace of mind :).