TOPS Knives was founded in 1998 with the sole goal of creating some of the highest quality knives available. TOPS Knives draws from the knowledge of both operators in the military and civilian outdoor professionals to create their blades. TOPS has just released two new blades, the Brush Wolf Nessmuk style knife and the High Impact full-tang hatchet.
TOPS Knives Introduces the Brush Wolf and High Impact Blades
The Brush Wolf was designed while considering the diverse environments coyotes traverse. They can be spotted deep in the forest, open fields, deserts, grasslands, swamps, cities, and even the alley behind your local Starbucks. The Brush Wolf was designed by Aaron and Nate Morgan of Houghton Era after a few tracking excursions in some viaducts in Detroit, MI. The two brothers grew up skateboarding there and became attracted to the remnants of coyote activity they were finding at some of the skate spots. Coyotes are known by many names, Song Dogs, Tricksters, Shape shifters, gods of the threshold. The Brush Wolf will help anyone thrive in those liminal spaces on the edge of the city, and in new territory you’ve yet to explore.
This knife nods at the traditional Nessmuk style blade but comes with some technical features as well. If you can’t steal fire like the coyote, you’ll likely not fail with the 90 degree spine section located right above the soft jimping, or the bow drill notches located on each side of the handle. Its Nessmuk shape combined with a high saber grind make it a superior blade for processing wood and skinning game. The swedge found on the tip makes for a much finer point for boring holes in wood or a hide. The Brush Wolf also comes with a section of teeth along the spine that mimic that deceitful grin coyotes give. The saw is excellent for gnawing into bone or quick notches for various traps and tools you might make in the field. The Brush Wolf is a knife meant to draw us to the wild. It implores us to explore with our tools respectfully and change the shape of the world around us.
High Impact Hatchet
The High Impact is Leo’s take on a full-sized hatchet/small ax. It’s huge. At just over 20 inches overall length, full-tang, and 3/8” thick, this thing has some weight behind it. It’s made of 1075 high carbon steel, so it’ll handle impacts well and keep a good edge. The tan canvas Micarta handles are thick, but have comfortable, rounded edges with some extra contouring to improve the grip without making it harsh. The classy double-stitched blade cover is a nod to the traditional options on the market but maintains TOPS’ style.
Bottom line? This may just be the largest full-tang hatchet on the market. It’s roughly 3.5 pound of chopping and splitting power The High Impact is large enough to swing with two hands, but still light and small enough to get some work done with just one. Bigger than most hatchets, but smaller than the typical full-sized ax, it’s a great blend for those looking for a tool that size.
Both of these new blades seem to be extremely useful for your standard outdoorsman. The Brush Wolf in particular seems to be great as an all-around backpacking knife as the Nessmuk style of blades tends to be great for working with game meat for both skinning and chopping. Meanwhile, the High Impact hatchet has all the hallmarks of a great small axe and also has the notable feature of being the largest full-tang hatchet currently on the market, meaning it should be durable enough for anything you can throw at it and have the weight to actually do some work compared to smaller hatchets.