20 Best Gut Hook Knives – Buying Guide & Reviews

best gut hook knives

Credit: Rich Bowen

Hunting is a popular activity for people who enjoy spending time outdoors. Like all activities, it is important you are properly equipped to enjoy the best experience while hunting. Knives play an important role in this activity as you need them for various tasks, from killing the animal to preparing the meat. There are many different hunting knives, and each is used for a different purpose. One type of knife you will use is a gut hook knife. This is used for opening the animal to remove its organs. There is a wide selection of knives for this purpose and each has its own features. The following is a guide to some of the things you should consider when choosing a gut hook knife, followed by reviews of the best gut hook knives available.

Reviews of the Best Gut Hook Knives

If you are looking for a knife with a gut hook, the choice is almost overwhelming. To simplify the buying process for you, here are 15 of the best gut hook knives for hunting available now.

1. Gerber Gator Premium Fixed Blade Knife

This is probably the best gutting knife on the market as it is made from good quality materials and has some excellent features. The full tang durable steel blade with gut hook is super sharp, has excellent edge retention, and is corrosion resistant. It is machine-polished to give a semi-mirrored look to the blade and bolster. The rubberized faux alligator skin handle is non-slip and ergonomically designed for a comfortable grip. The knife comes with a protective sheath that is made from top-quality leather, so you can safely store and carry your knife when it is not in use without worrying about injury.

Key Features:

  • Excellent edge retention
  • Leather protective sheath
  • Corrosion-resistant
  • Quality materials
  • Non-slip grip

2. Benchmade Saddle Mountain Skinner with Gut Hook

This is one of the more expensive skinning gut hook knives, but you are paying for a good quality and long-lasting tool from a reputable brand. The stainless steel blade is extra sharp, rust-resistant, well-balanced, and has excellent edge retention. This fixed blade, full tang knife is one of the best knives available for both skinning and gutting as it is reliable, easy to clean, and very strong. The wooden handle gives this knife a traditional appearance but has all the advantages of knives with handles made from modern materials. So, it has good grip and is non-slip. Included with the knife is a leather sheath for safe storage when you are not using your hunting knife.

Key Features:

  • Stainless steel blade
  • Wooden handle
  • Leather sheath
  • Strong and durable
  • Easy to clean

3. Meyerco MSG6241-BRK Guthook Skinner

A skinning knife with gut hook, this all-in-one tool is a useful addition to your hunting gear. It has a 3.5-inch non-glare, stainless steel blade and has a total length of 6.75-inches. The gut hook is elongated for a deeper cut that is ideal for game with a thick hide. Its handle has a camouflage design and has both a comfortable and non-slip grip. This fixed blade knife comes with a ballistic cloth sheath for safe and convenient storage. The low price of this knife means it is one of the best gut hook knives for those on a budget.

Key Features:

  • Fixed stainless steel blade
  • Non-slip grip handle
  • Deep gut hook
  • Ballistic cloth sheath

4. Buck Knives 398 Omni Hunter Guthook Folding Knife

For those who prefer a folding gut hook knife, this is one of the best options as it is made by one of the best-known brands in the knife industry. The gut hook’s angles are sharpened to make skinning game a breeze and the stainless steel blade is super sharp, corrosion-resistant, and has excellent edge retention. The ergonomically designed handle has grip ridges and a thumb groove for a secure grip. It is made from Dynaflex rubber, so it is non-slip. The handle also has a lanyard hole for easy attachment. It is easy to open in one step using the thumb stud on the blade and it has a mid-lockback design for strength and safety. This knife is a compact and lightweight option as it measures just 5.75-inches when closed and weighs just 5.1-ounces. It comes with a heavy-duty polyester sheath for convenient and safe storage when not in use.

Key Features:

  • Mid-lockback design
  • Easy opening
  • Sharp blade and gut hook
  • Ergonomically designed handle
  • Compact and lightweight

5. KA-BAR 2-1234-5 Game Hook Leather

This is one of the smartest looking knives available and it is made from good quality materials. The handle is adorned with stacked leather, which gives it a wonderful pattern. The Handle is shaped with finger grooves for a secure grip, which improves safety when using this knife. Although it is an attractive knife, it is also a practical option as it is tested to ensure quality and durability. The blade and the gut hook are both very sharp and the blade has excellent edge retention. This knife comes with a stunning stacked leather protective sheath, which will keep you safe when carrying this fixed blade knife in your pocket.

Key Features:

  • Stunning design
  • Stacked leather handle and sheath
  • Durable
  • Good edge retention

6. Kershaw 1896GH LoneROck Large Fixed Blade with Gut Hook

The 4.25-inch curved blade of this skinning knife is made from stainless steel that is coated in titanium carbo-nitride. Both the blade and the gut hook are very sharp, durable, and rust-resistant. The handle of this knife is made from glass-filled nylon with a K-texture gripand a thumb groove. Therefore, it is comfortable to grip and is non-slip for safety. This is a lightweight option, despite having a fixed blade, as it weighs only 5.6-ounces. It comes with a nylon protective sheath. This means that you can safely store and carry this fixed blade gut hook knife when it is not in use.

Key Features:

  • Curved blade
  • Sharp gut hook
  • Quality materials
  • Lightweight
  • Nylon sheath

7. Buck Knives 499 PakLite Guthook Knife

If you want something that is lightweight and compact, then this is one of the best options for you. The minimalist design of this gut hook means that it is only 4.75-inches long and weighs just 1.7-ounces. This product differs from others on the market as it is solely a gut hook and not a feature on a knife. Therefore, it is the perfect companion for any hunting knife. It is made from good quality stainless steel that is strong, corrosion-resistant, and has excellent edge retention. The gut hook comes with a heavy-duty nylon sheath for you to store and carry the gut hook safely.

Key Features:

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Minimalist design
  • Quality materials
  • Heavy-duty nylon sheath

8. Elk Ridge ER-274RC Fixed Blade Knife

The overall length of this fixed blade gut hook knife is 8.75-inches. The blade is made from durable and rust-resistant stainless steel and the gut hook has enough depth to easily tear through skin. The handle features a fun red camouflage design and it is textured to give you a good grip. It is also shaped and has a thumb groove for extra safety when using your knife. This knife comes with a sturdy nylon protective sheath in which you can store your knife safely when it is not in use. This is one of the cheapest gut hook knives on the market, so it is a great option for people with a limited budget.

Key Features:

  • Low cost
  • Funky handle design
  • Textured grip
  • Deep gut hook

9. Elk Ridge ER-129 Outdoor Fixed Blade Knife

For those who want a knife that has a traditional look, then this is possibly the best choice.The traditional look of this knife is predominantly because of the burl wood handle that is shaped with finger grooves for a better grip. Another element of this knife that gives the traditional feel is the genuine leather sheath, that is embossed with the deer logo of Elk Ridge. The 3.5-inch fixed blade of this knife is made from stainless steel, so it is durable and rust-resistant. The blade has a full tang and a deep, narrow gut hook. The curved belly of the blade is ideally suited to skinning.

Key Features:

  • Traditional style
  • Burl wood handle
  • Leather sheath
  • Full tang

10. CRKT Free Range Hunter Fixed Blade Knife with Gut Hook

A sturdy a durable gut hook knife, the blade of this tool is made from stainless steel. This is durable, easy to clean, and rust-resistant. It is a narrow blade with a drop point, an elongated gut hook, and a serrated edge along the spine. It has a hollow ground blade edge that retains its sharpness well. The polymer molded handles are double injected. It has textured areas and finger grooves, so you will have a secure and comfortable grip on this knife while using it for field dressing. Weighing just 3.6-ounces, this is a lightweight knife. It comes with a protective sheath for safe storage.

Key Features:

  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • Sharp gut hook
  • Sturdy handle

11. Case Gut Hook Leather Hunter Knife

Made from Tru-sharp surgical stainless steel, this four-inch fixed blade is sharp, durable, rust-resistant, and has good edge retention. It has a concave ground blade with a gut hook on the spine. The stylish looking handle is made from polished leather and has a metal finger guard to prevent your fingers from slipping onto the blade. It has a matching leather sheath that you can use to safely store your knife when not in use. The overall length of this knife is 8.5-inches and it weighs just 4.8 ounces, so it is a lightweight option.

Key Features:

  • Lightweight
  • Stylish leather handle
  • Finger guard
  • Leather sheath

12. WatchFire Guthook Skinning Knife

This sturdy skinning knife with gut hook has a black-coated stainless steel blade, which is rust-resistant, sharp, non-glare, and has good edge retention. The gut hook blade is located on the blade’s spine close to the tip of the knife. There is a protective sheath included so that the blade and the gut hook are not exposed when carrying the knife in your pocket. The rubber handle of the knife is textured and skid-proof, so your handle will not slip onto the blade when using the knife and this increases safety. The overall length of this knife is nine inches.

Key Features:

  • Skid-proof handle
  • Stainless steel blade
  • Protective sheath
  • Non-glare blade

13. Bubba Blade Gut Hook Knife

This skinning and hunting knife has a four-inch blade with an overall length of nine inches. This is one of the best gut hook knives in terms of the quality of its blade. The steel blade is coated with Ti-Nitride, so it is rust resistant and easy to clean. It is ideal for both hunting and fishing as it can easily cut through skin, flesh, and scales. It is sharp enough for precision cutting and can easily remove meat without loss. Its tip is extra sharp to make starting each cut easy. This dressing knife has a non-slip grip handle with a camouflage design and a trigger grip for extra safety. Other safety features include a safety guard to stop your hand slipping onto the blade and a protective sheath with a belt loop.

Key Features:

  • Coated sharp blade
  • Sharp blade, gut hook, and tip
  • Sheath with belt loop
  • Trigger grip
  • Safety guard
  • Non-slip grip handle

14. Outdoor Edge GripHook Blaze

A skinning knife with gut hook, this piece of hunting equipment has detailed craftsmanship and an innovative design. This is an affordable option, despite being made from quality materials. The blade is made from stainless steel and has a super sharp gut hook on its spine that can open skin like a zipper. This reliable and long-lasting knife is safe to use as it has a lock system that holds the blade in place when it is deployed and locks it safely away when not in use. The orange handle is textured for a comfortable non-slip grip. It comes with a patterned pouch for storage when not in use.

Key Features:

  • Folding knife with gut hook
  • Quality materials
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Storage pouch
  • Texture handle

15. Winchester Large Fixed Blade Knife

If you prefer the sturdiness of a larger knife to a compact and lightweight knife, then this product will suit you. It has an overall length of 14-inches with a five-inch blade and it weighs 12.8-ounces. The strong and durable blade is made from a tough stainless steel that is rust-resistant. Along the spine is a gut hook with a fine edge that can slice through skin with no problems. The sturdy and secure bolster is also made from stainless steel. This knife has a burl wood handle that has a traditional look that will appeal to many people. It is shaped for good grip and has a safety guard to prevent your fingers from slipping onto the blade.

Key Features:

  • Traditional style
  • Burl wood handle
  • Stainless steel blade and bolster
  • Gut hook with a fine edge
  • Large and sturdy

Best Field Dressing Knife Sets Reviews (Knife Set with Gut Hook Knife)

For those who want multiple knives to use for hunting and field dressing rather than just a gut hook knife, there are many fantastic knife sets from which you can choose. The following are reviews of five of the best field dressing knife sets available.

 

1. Elk Ridge Hunting Knife Two-Piece Set

There are two knives included in this set; a seven-inch straight-edged knife for skinning and hunting and a 6.5-inch gut hook knife. The blades of both knives are made from 440 stainless steel, which gives the knives a high-level of hardness and good edge retention. Both handles are made textured ABS and have a camouflage design. They are shaped for easy grip and to stop fingers from sliding along the blade. The set comes with a black nylon carry pouch that fits both knives. This means you can safely carry your knives around when you are not using them for hunting and field dressing.

Key Features:

  • 2-piece set
  • Dual carry case
  • Durable materials
  • Sharp blades

2. Buck Knives 141 PakLite Field Master Kit Knives

A three-piece set, this hunting kit consists of a skinning knife, a caper, and a separate gut hook. Each is made of stainless steel which is hard, strong, durable, rust-resistant, and has excellent edge retention. The pieces have a minimalistic design that means they are lightweight. Each knife is made from a single piece of metal and has cut out sections that reduce the weight of the knives. This set is convenient and compact as all three pieces fit into one protective sheath that keeps you and your knives safe. The sheath has removable liners, so it is easy to clean. It also has a zipper pocket for you to carry any other accessories or small items. This set also comes with an adjustable belt strap for you to wear and the sheath attaches to this.

Key Features:

  • Reputable brand
  • Lightweight
  • 3-piece set
  • Durable
  • Sheath and belt strap

3. Gerber Myth Field Dress Set

This dual knife set consists of a Myth Fixed Blade Pro Knife with a gut hook and a Myth Compact Fixed Blade Knife. These knives are packaged together to create a complete field dressing solution. Both knives are made from good quality materials with stainless steel blades and handles that are textured and shaped for comfort, grip, and safety. The set comes with a puncture-proof sheath that also has a built-in carbide sharpener. This sheath can easily attach to your belt loop for easy and convenient carrying. The combined weight of the three items in this hunting set totals 13.6-ounces. You can buy the gut hook knife separately if you wish, and this comes with a single protective sheath with the built-in carbide sharpener.

Key Features:

  • Gut hook knife is also available to buy separately
  • Textured handles
  • Sharp blades
  • Carbide sharpener in the puncture-proof sheath

4. Elk Ridge Hunting Knife Set

A three-piece kit, this hunting knife set includes two knives and a protective sheath. The first knife in the set is an 8.5-inch fixed blade knife that is four millimeters thick and has a gut hook feature on the spine. A five-inch folding knife that is three millimeters thick is the second knife in the set.Both knives had blades that are made of stainless steel and handles that feature a camouflage design. The handles of both knives are shaped and have a thumb groove for improved grip. Each handle has a lanyard hole to give you an extra attachment option. The knives fit neatly into the nylon sheath provided as it is designed to fit both knives.

Key Features:

  • Two knives
  • Dual sheath
  • Shaped handles

5. Gerber Moment Field Dress Kit

There are two good quality knives in this set; one is a small fixed blade caping knife and the second is a larger fixed blade gut hook knife. The blades of both knives are made from a high-quality stainless still and have a glass bead finish. The blades have super sharp fine edges and a full tang construction. Both handles are shaped with thumb grooves and are made from a textured rubber. This means they are comfortable to use and you will have a safe and secure grip. A safety feature on both knives is the finger guards that stop your fingers from slipping onto the blade. The set comes with a paddle-style nylon sheath that has metal snaps. If you do not want to buy the set, you can buy the fixed blade gut hook knife separately and this also comes with a protective sheath.

Key Features:

  • Gut hook knife available separately
  • Paddle-style sheath
  • Textured handles
  • Quality blades
  • Full tang

Best Gut Hook Knives- A Buying Guide

If you need a gut hook knife for hunting, you will find a vast choice of knives available. This guide highlights the different things you should consider to help you find the right gut hook knife for you.

Blade Type and Materials

The most important aspect of a hunting knife is its blade, so this is the part that you need to give the most consideration. Think about the following points:

  • Materials- The blades of hunting knives are always made of metals and the most common of these is stainless steel. This is a hard and durable material that does not stain and is rust-resistant.
  • Trailing point- Also referred to as skinning knives, trailing point knives are the knives that most commonly have a gut hook. A skinning knife with gut hook has a curved blade and spine with an upward point. These knives include a gut hook so you can complete both the gutting and skinning elements of field dressing using the same knife.
  • Clip point- This style of knife is based on the bowie knife. It is called a clip point knife because it appears to have part of the blade clipped off. The point of the knife is good for puncturing, while the sharp blade is multifunctional. Therefore, this is a versatile and general purpose knife.
  • Drop point- The drop point knife has a curve from the spine to the tip that creates a lower point. The large belly of the knife makes it a good choice for slicing. The shape means that this knife is easier to control and less likely to cause unwanted nicks.

Handles

After the blades, the handles are the next most important consideration when choosing a gut hook knife. Think about the following points:

  • Materials- Handles are available in a wide range of materials, including metal, plastics, wood, and bone. The materials affect the price and the aesthetics of the knife, but which you choose is personal preference.
  • Design- An ergonomic design means you will have a good grip, which is important for both comfort and safety. This can include the handle having a shape that is easy and secure to hold.
  • Non-slip- When out hunting, your knife can easily become slippery due to the weather or simply the nature of hunting. Look for a handle that is non-slip as this will reduce the risk of you injuring yourself as you will retain good grip, even if your knife becomes slippery.

Fixed or Folding

You can choose between fixed blade or folding blade gut hook knives. Here are the pros and cons of each:

  • Fixed blade knife with gut hook- most hunting knives have a fixed blade. The advantages of these are they are ready to use immediately, and they are easy to clean because there are no additional parts. On the downside, they are larger and you need a protective sheath.
  • Folding knife with gut hook- Although folding hunting knives are less common, they are available. These are harder to clean and have parts that can become faulty. However, a folding knife with gut hook is a lightweight and compact option and you do not need a protective sheath for a folding gut hook pocket knife.

Other Features

There are some other features that come on some gutting knives that may appeal to you. Some extra features to look out for include:

  • Protective sheath- A protective sheath is not a necessity for a folding gut hook knife as the blade is not exposed when it is folded down into the handle. However, it is essential to have a protective sheath if you use a fixed blade knife. If you choose a fixed blade knife and it does not come with a protective sheath, this is something you will have to buy separately.
  • Hand Guard- As a safety feature, many gut hook knives have a hand guard. This protects your hand from sliding onto the blade, even if the knife becomes slippery during the field dressing process.

Price

When buying any product, its price is a big consideration for many people, especially for those with a limited budget. Consider the following in relation to the price of a gut hook knife:

  • The price depends on the brand, the style of the knife, the materials used, and any other features.
  • You can usually save money when buying your knife if you buy it online rather than in a bricks-and-mortar store.

A Few Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Gut Knife and Why Do You Need One?

A gut hook knife is a sharp knife with a hook feature that hunters use to open the abdomen of an animal. The hook slices neatly through an animal’s undercarriage to expose their internal organs. The hunter can then easily remove the guts of the animal. The blade is usually the same as trailing knives but differ because of the hook on the spine of the blade. A gut hook knife is one of the knives most commonly used by hunters as it is a versatile item.

What Other Types of Knives Are Handy to Take Along While Hunting or Field Dressing?

Although a gut hook knife is probably the most used hunting knife, there are many different types of knives that hunters take with them for hunting and field dressing. Some of the most common knives used by hunters include:

  • Boning knife- This is a version of a traditional hunting knife that is adapted for the specific task of separating the flesh from the bone. They have a narrow and flexible blade.
  • Bowie knife- A bowie knife is used for killing animals and it has a clip point blade. For most types of hunting, the hunter does not use a knife to kill game. However, they are used for hog hunting.
  • Buck knife- Originally a brand name, buck knives is now a generic term to describe a style of hunting knife that was popularized by the company ‘Buck Knives’. They usually have clip-points and are used as a versatile pocket knife as well as a hunting knife.
  • Camp knife- This is the most versatile of the hunting knives as you can use it for multiple tasks, both for hunting and for around the camp. They are a larger drop point knife that takes attributes of some of the other hunting knives.
  • Caping knife- Caping is the process of removing the skin from an animal’s head and neck. This is done when the hunter is keeping the head of the animal as a trophy. They must carefully preserve the skin in this process. The caping knife has a smaller blade and an upturned point. You can use these knives for other tasks even though they are designed specifically for caping.
  • Hunting knife- Also called a hunting dagger, the purpose of this knife is to kill. For many types of hunting, a knife is not used as the method to kill an animal. The exception to this is hog hunting.
  • Skinning knife- You need to remove the skin of your game without it tearing. These small, curved knives with thin blades are perfect for this task. You need a knife handle with a good grip and a blade with good edge retention.
  • Hunting knife set- Some people prefer to buy a set that contains all the different knives you need for hunting. The best field dressing knife sets will also include other tools for hunting, such as a bone saw.

Final Verdict

A gut hook knife is a useful and versatile piece of equipment to take along on your hunting trips. You will find many different styles of these knives available and each has its own features. One of the best gut hook knives available is the Gerber Gator Premium Fixed Blade Knife. Made from good quality materials, the blade of this knife is extra sharp and has excellent edge retention. It is also a smart-looking knife with a stylish leather sheath.

If you have a limited budget, one of the best options you will find is the Meyerco MSG6241-BRK Guthook Skinner. Despite the low price of this gut hook knife, the deep hook and sharp skinning blade mean that this is a versatile item to have in your hunting gear for very little cost.

For those who want a full knife set for hunting, the best field dressing knife set is the Buck Knives 141 PakLite Field Master Kit. Manufactured by one of the leading brands in the field, this set contains the three most useful and versatile tools you need for hunting or field dressing, all of which are made from durable stainless steel and have a lightweight and minimalist design. The set also comes with a protective sheath and belt strap.

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