Born in Durban, South Africa and now based in Boise, Idaho, Christopher Stanley Reeve — better known simply as Chris Reeve — is arguably the most eminent and influential knifemaker working today, with a small but elite lineup of blades that are considered by many to be the Holy Grail of the space. Since the inception of Chris Reeve Knives, the boutique outfit has always favored quality over quantity, very seldom releasing completely new models — a fact that makes the debut of two entirely novel fixed blades incredibly noteworthy news.
Taking its name from the Zulu word for “bird,” the first of the two new knives is the Inyoni, an heirloom-grade — yet thoroughly rugged and utilitarian — fixed blade knife that measures just under 8” and weighs in at only 2.4oz. Set beneath a pair of removable Micarta handles is a full-tang, (.125″ thick) 3.775” drop point blade that’s composed of CPM MagnaCut blade steel — a top-shelf construction rated at between 63 and 64 for hardness on the Rockwell scale. The Inyoni has been sized to be incredibly lightweight and packable while still providing real utility — specifically with fish and birds, though with its hardwearing quality and construction the knife is conducive to a wide variety of outdoor uses.
Paying homage to Reeve’s original backpacker knife from the 1980s, CRK’s all-new Backpacker fixed blade model is a high-end hunting knife made for skinning game and light bushcraft duties. Tipping the scales at 3.8oz, the Backpacker boasts a full-tang construction cloaked in a set of Micarta scales with an anatomical design that affords ample grip and leverage. The Backpacker also features a 4.019″ blade that, like the Inyoni, is crafted from 63 to 64 HRC-rated CPM MagnaCut steel and is of the drop point variety.
Available now in limited numbers, the Chris Reeve Knives Inyoni and Backpacker have been priced at $275 and $300, respectively. Sold with an adjustment wrench, a paracord accent lanyard, and a custom slim-fit KYDEX sheath with standard 3/4” spacing, both knives are also offered with the buyer’s choice of black or natural canvas Micarta removable handle scales.