At some point, you’ll need to know a knot or two if you prefer to hike, climb, paddle, or sail. Knot tying is, without a doubt, required knowledge for any outdoor activity since it enables you to do everything from setting up a tent at the campsite to rappelling off a cliff after a climb.
However, even if you’re a newcomer to the pursuit, knot tying is an notoriously difficult skill to master. Thankfully, we are here to assist you.
We’ll show you 25 knots of various kinds that you must be familiar with before your next big trip in this guide to all things knotty.
We’ll tell you about the benefits and drawbacks of each approach, as well as how to tie a nice knot, step by step, for each knot. Adventure with confidence knowing that you’re a genuine knot-tying master in that manner.
Caution! Knot Tying Safety
Knot tying It is an age-old hobby that requires hours of dedication to perfect. From tensioning a tarp at your campsite to tying up your sailboat at the dock, several of the knots we talk about in this guide may be utilized for a variety of different tasks.
A knot isn’t always a significant risk management issue. For example, it is unlikely that your tent’s guyline knot will come undone. A properly tied knot, on the other hand, is required for your safety in some circumstances. The knot you use to join the rope while rock climbing, for example, is what prevents you from falling when you fall.
Feel free to get knotty as much as you want if you’re reading this article because you want to learn knots that will come in handy in non-life-or-death situations or because you think of yourself as a knot-tying master.
However, please be careful with your new abilities if you’re here to learn how to tie knots for rock climbing or any other purpose where your knot is a valuable life-saving aid. This handbook is meant to assist you in your learning, however it isn’t enough on its own. If you’re going climbing, hiring a professional guide or instructor is highly recommended
25 Types of Knots That You Need to Know
We’ll show you 25 common types of knots in this section. This guide’s knots might be utilized in a variety of different endeavors, so there’s sure to be one that will be valuable in your life.
It’s helpful if you have a piece of rope or cord on hand while reading through this article so that you can practice your new skills. For honing your knot tying skills, use a cord with a thickness of 5 to 9 mm (0.19 to 0.35 in), but anything you have is better than nothing.
Remember that a number of different ways may be used to tie practically every knot. We couldn’t possibly discuss every knot tying approach in this article, though. As a result, we’ve picked one approach for each of these knots that you may practice.
There are a few terms you’ll need to understand in order to get the most out of this guide before we begin our list of 25 kinds of knots: You should master the following five phrases in particular:
- You may use the term working end to refer to the end of a rope, cord, line, or webbing used to tie a knot.
- You aren’t using the rope, cord, line, or webbing at all to tie a knot. It’s standing end. The lagging or free ends of the rope are two terms used to describe this.
- A bight is a rope’s U-shaped bend.
- A loop is a U-shaped curve in a rope where the two strands cross over each other. It’s a bight if the strands don’t cross.
- The length of rope remaining in the working end after you finish a knot is known as the tail of a knot. This is what some people refer to as “excess rope.” It’s important to note that the quantity of tail visible in our knot photos is inadequate for actual knot tying, but it’s adequate for picture quality. At the end of each knot, always leave enough tail.
After getting those important knot-tying terms out of the way, we’ll turn our attention to the 25 types of knots that you must know:
1. Square Knot
Use: In a non-load-bearing environment, tying two ends of a rope or line together. When safety is a top priority, don’t use it.
- It’s simple to tie, and it’s fast.
- Unties easily after being loaded
- The basis for many other similar knots
- Comes undone easily
- Can fail under heavy loads
The square knot is the knot we usually use to tie our shoes, and it is one of the most frequently tied knots in the world. For numerous applications around the home, notably reefing a sail on a sailboat (thus the name), we utilize a variation of the square knot, also known as the reef knot.
The square knot is simple to tie and untie, which is a significant advantage. One of the knot’s key drawbacks, however, is its ease with which it can be untied. When safety is a concern, the square knot should never be used. It fails quickly under heavy loads. Rather, when you want to bind two ends of a rope together, the square knot is intended.
To tie the square knot:
- Hold two ends of rope—one in each hand. The strand in your right hand is Rope A. The strand in your left hand is Rope B.
- Cross Rope A over Rope B. Rope A should now be in your left hand.
- Cross Rope A over Rope B again. Rope A should now be in your right hand.
- Tighten both Rope A and Rope B to form the square knot.
2. Overhand Knot
Use: With any line of rope or webbing, make a simple knot. In the “Overhand Knot Series,” it is used to create a variety of other knots.
- Very simple to tie
- Essential skill for forming dozens of other knots
- Great for use in webbing
- While it is less reliable than some other forms,
- Can be difficult to untie after being loaded
The overhand knot is another knot that you have most likely tied countless times in your life, even if you didn’t know what it was called. It’s arguably the simplest of all knots.
A stopper knot, also known as an overhand knot, is a knot that prevents a rope from sliding through a carabiner, grommet, or other piece of hardware. It’s commonly used as one. Nevertheless, if you’re not utilizing webbing, there are a variety of superior stopper knots available, such as the double overhand stopper knot.
The overhand knot is the foundation for a slew of other knots, which is one of the advantages of learning it early in your knot tying career. As a result, learning this knot will help you succeed in your future tying efforts.
To tie the overhand knot:
- With one hand, hold the working end of a rope.
- The working end of the rope can be used to create a loop.
- Thread the working end through the loop
- Make the overhand knot by pulling both working and standing ends of the rope.
3. Figure Eight Knot
- Simple and easy to tie
- Easy to inspect for proper technique
- Comes undone easily after being loaded
- The basis of many other knots
- Requires more rope to tie than the overhand
- Can “flip” over itself and fail when used as a stopper knot
- Not ideal for use in webbing
The appropriately named figure eight knot is a favorite among climbers everywhere, and it’s another fantastic stopper knot. The figure eight follow-through knot, which is one of the greatest knots for tying-in to a rope when constructed properly, is actually one of the first knots climbers discover.
The figure eight is simpler to untie, even after it has been subjected to extreme loads, which is the major advantage of the overhand versus the figure eight. When it’s tied with an appropriate amount of tail, the figure eight is also designed to tighten on itself, making it less likely to come undone.
The figure eight has just two downsides in reality. The overhand knot requires less rope to tie than the double fisherman’s knot. When utilized as a stopper knot, it may also “flip” over itself. Leaving at least 1 foot (30 cm) of space between the knot and the end of the rope is not very common, particularly if you’re climbing. This kind of failure, on the other hand, is a serious issue.
Additionally, it’s important to know that tying the figure eight in webbing isn’t recommended. Instead, use the overhand knot if you’re working with webbing.
To tie the figure eight knot:
- Hold the end of a rope in one hand and use your other hand to hold the working end.
- Using the working end of the rope, create a loop.
- Wrap the standing end’s working end around the backside.
- Thread the rope’s working end through the loop you made in step 2. In the rope, this should result in an eight-fold figure.
- The figure eight knot is made by tightening the working and standing ends of the rope.
4. Clove Hitch
Use: Carabiner, tree, or any other item can be used to attach rope or line to a post. Climbing and sailing are both very popular.
- After being loaded, it’s simple to untie.
- There are several methods to tie
- In load-bearing circumstances (with care), it may be utilized.
- Other hitches may be confused with this one.
- It’s known to happen in particular types of situations.
The clove hitch is used for everything from tying fenders on a sailboat to connecting tent guylines to a tree, and it’s an important skill for any outdoor lover. Depending on personal taste and the situation, it may be tied in a variety of ways.
The clove hitch has the greatest benefit of being simple to untie even after it has beenladen. It may be employed in climbing and mountaineering, but only with caution, since it can also support weight. The clove hitch is one of the most versatile knots in your knot-tying toolbox when tied securely and with a significant amount of tail on both ends (ideally 2 feet/60 cm or more).
Yet, it’s important to understand that the clove hitch can be harmful if proper usage isn’t achieved. The clove hitch may “slip” and fail if it is tied around a very smooth item (such as a metal pole). In addition, a clove hitch may slip around a huge object if you tie it properly. When the hitch is tied properly on a carabiner, this does not typically occur.
To tie a clove hitch around an object:
- Wrap the rope’s operating end around the item.
- To create a loop, cross the rope’s working end around the rope’s standing end.
- Create a second loop by wrapping the working end around the item once more.
- Go through the second loop that was made in step 3 with the working end. To make the clove hitch,
- Pull both ends of the rope together quite hard.
Use: At the end of a rope or line, create a secure stopper knot. Because of its added bulk and dependability, the overhand knot is preferred.
- For most cases, a simple stopper knot is sufficient.
- It is possible to bend the item by combining it.
- The overhand is stronger because it has more bulk.
- It reliably tightens itself
- After being loaded, it is difficult to untie.
- Webbing isn’t the best option here.
The double overhand stopper knot is a stopper knot, as the name implies. Since it has substantially more bulk than its relative, the overhand knot, it’s one of the most dependable stopper knots out there. For added security, this increases solidity and helps to prevent the double overhand stopper knot from slipping via carabiners, grommets, and other objects.
The double overhand stopper knot also tightens on itself. It’s unlikely to come undone while under load as long as you provide it with enough tail (at least 10 in/25 cm; more is better). In reality, the bowline is frequently tied with the double overhand as a backup knot to prevent it from coming undone.
The fact that it’s difficult to untie once it’s been heavily loaded is the only major flaw with the double overhand stopper knot. When utilizing this knot in particular circumstances, be careful about applying repeated large weights to one of these knots. It’s also worth noting that this knot isn’t ideal for webbing. The overhand knot is the best choice for webbing usage.
To tie the double overhand stopper knot:
- In a piece of rope, construct a loop.
- Slip the working end of the rope into the knot you created in step 1.
- Return to the same loop and insert the working end.
- The double overhand stopper knot is created by pulling both working and standing ends of the rope.
6. Double Fisherman’s Bend
Use: Joining two ropes of similar sizes together
- For load-bearing situations, there’s a simple way to secure two ropes.
- For added security, it tightens itself
- For creating Prusik Loops for climbing, this is a popular option.
- Once loaded, it’s difficult to undo the knot.
- To avoid failure, the tails must be left extremely long.
- For slippery rope fibers (Dyneema, for example), there are additional steps.
For load-bearing situations, like climbing, the double fisherman’s bend (also known as the grapevine bend) is one of the most popular ways to join two ends of similar-diameter rope.
This knot is so popular because it tightens down on itself, making it less likely to come undone. (It’s technically a bend, more on that later.) Incidentally, since this knot may be difficult to untie after it has been subjected to repeated large stresses, this characteristic of the double fisherman’s is also a danger.
The double fisherman’s knot is essentially two double overhand knots stacked on top of each other, even if it isn’t apparent just by looking at a picture of it. Any rope can employ this knot. When dealing with extremely slippery rope fibers like Kevlar, Dyneema, and Spectra, however, you may need to form a triple or even a quadruple fisherman’s knot.
Lastly, when using this knot to tie Prusik Loops in climbing, care must be taken. The double fisherman’s tails should be at least 4 inches (10 cm) long, though they may be longer. Knot failure may be caused by tails that are too short.
To tie the double fisherman’s knot:
- Hold two ends of the rope in your hands, one in each. Rope A is the strand in your right hand. Rope B is the left-hand strand.
- Make a double overhand knot around the standing end of Rope B with the working end of Rope A. Make sure to leave a 4-inch (10-centimeter) tail.
- Make a double overhand knot around the standing end of Rope A with the working end of Rope B. Make sure to leave a 4-inch (10-centimeter) tip.
- To make the double fisherman’s knot, pull both rope ends to the same spot.
Use: At the end of a rope, create a loop. It’s a popular sailboat, but it has limited climbing capabilities.
- Once loaded, it’s very simple to untie.
- The loop size is easily adjustable.
- There are various ways to tie a knot, for example.
- It doesn’t skitter or bind under load.
- When there is no load, it can come undone.
- Due to its modest size, tying it incorrectly is simple.
- When loaded, it is impossible to untie or alter.
Bowlines may be used to bind rope to a mooring or any stake, making them a popular sailing knot. In rock climbing, they have limited usefulness, such as when setting up toprope anchors. It is, however, important to note that the bowline is a dangerous and should be used only by skilled climbers for tying into a climbing rope.
The bowline has the major benefit of being simple to untie once it’s been loaded. Nevertheless, when it’s not loaded, it can’t be untied and may even come undone. As a result, the bowline should always be tied with a stopper knot (ideally a double overhand) on its tail in load-bearing situations.
We couldn’t possibly cover all of the methods to tie a bowline in this article, so we’ll just cover a few. It’s worth remembering that there are a variety of ways to tie a bowline incorrectly, so practice is required to learn how to do it correctly.
To tie a bowline:
- Make a 1-foot (30-centimeter) loop in the rope’s working end, about 3 feet (1 meter) from the rope’s end.
- Thread the rope’s working end through the loop.
- Wrap the rope’s working end around the standing and around the rope.
- Pass the rope’s working end through the step 2 loop.
- Lay a double overhand knot in the rope’s working end. The main loop of the bowline should be wrapped with a double overhand.
- To make the bowline, pull both working and standing ends of the rope.
8. Water Knot
Use: Joining two pieces of webbing or rope together. For combining two lengths of webbing, use this knot.
- It’s simple to knot a tie.
- Webbing-friendly, ideal for use
- To tie, you’ll need a little rope.
- After being loaded, it’s difficult to untie
- Requires very long tails
The water knot (really a bend) is one of the knots in the overhand series and is also known as the ring bend. The water knot is essentially a variant of the overhand knot, but with a few extra steps.
The water knot is the best option for connecting two ends of webbing in terms of tying knots. When webbing is used, it creates a low-profile knot that is less likely to snag on rocks.
It’s worth noting that this knot necessitates a considerable quantity of tail (at least 1 ft/30 cm). Since repeated loads are known to cause the knot’s tails to slip through it, that’s what happens. For usage in load-bearing situations, the water knot must be examined on a regular basis.
The water knot can be described as an overhand follow-through in one of the best ways. To create this knot, use the other end of webbing to re-trace the initial knot’s course by making an overhand knot in one end of webbing.
To tie a water knot:
- Hold one end of a rope or webbing in each hand. Rope A is the alternating strand in your right hand. Rope B is the strand in your left hand.
- Rope A should be tied with an overhand knot. It’s not necessary to snug up the knot.
- Thread the overhand knot in Rope A with the working end of Rope B.
- Using the overhand knot in Rope B as a guide, trace the course of Rope B using the working end of Rope B.
- To create the water knot, pull on both ropes’ working and standing ends.
9. Prusik Hitch
Use: Using a piece of cord, create friction around the ore or add more rope strands. Ascending a rope has traditionally been done with this. It is now mostly used to add friction to a rope system.
- It is possible to load it in both directions.
- It’s quite easy to check for proper technique.
- It offers good friction.
- When loaded, it is difficult to discharge
- Not recommended for webbing applications
The Prusik hitch is a popular friction hitch among climbers. It is named after German physician Karl Prusik, who first advocated its use in the 1930s. However, its application in rope ascension has been superseded by complicated ascending equipment in recent years.
The Prusik is now widely used as a rappelling backup friction hitch. It may also be utilized to form a one-way pulley by applying friction to a rope system.
The Prusik has the advantage of being loaded from the top or bottom, which is not the case with other friction hitches. Only one direction may be used to load many friction hitches. When under considerable strain, however, the Prusik is difficult to release.
You’ll need a piece of cord (tied in a sling) to tie the hitch, as well as another rope to tie the hitch around, if you want to use a Prusik. The cord should be at least 3 mm thinner than the other rope, with a significant diameter discrepancy between these two lines. It’s also important to remember that webbing isn’t a Prusik tying material.
To tie a Prusik:
- With one hand, grasp a bight of the sling cord.
- Wrap the rope in a bight.
- Feed the sling’s bight of cord through it.
- Repeat Steps 2 and 3 three times in total. If you want, you can add additional loops to increase friction.
- Use the Prusik hitch to snug up the bight. To test the knot’s friction abilities, yank on either side of the bight. Add more loops to the hitch if the Prusik does not provide enough friction.
Use: Friction is generated around a rope. Webbing is ideal for this product. It may also be used with a cord.
- When it is under load, it is simple to remove.
- Webbing may be used to tie it
- Has a high friction coefficient
- It’s only possible to load something in one direction.
The Kleimheist is comparable to the Prusik knot in many ways. The Kleimheist, like the Prusik, is a friction hitch that may supply friction on a rope for ascension and the development of one-way pulleys.
A Kleimheist is unidirectional, whereas a prusik is bidirectional. This implies that you can only load a Kleimheist in one direction. The Kleimheist will not produce the same level of friction if you load it incorrectly. Kleimheist may also be released under load, unlike the Prusik.
Kleimheist is also a popular friction hitch for webbing that is suitable for use. The Kleimheist is second to none when it comes to making a webbing-based friction hitch, even though it is also effective when utilized with cord.
A piece of cord or webbing (lashed in a sling) is required to tie the Kleimheist hitch, and another rope is required to tie the Kleimheist hitch around. If you’re using cord, there should be a significant difference between these two lines in diameter, with the cord being at least 3 mm thinner than the other rope.
To tie a Kleimheist:
- With one hand, grip a bight of the sling.
- Wrap the rope around the bight from behind.
- Move up the rope at least three times while wrapped in the sling.
- Insert the sling’s other end into the bight, passing it upward.
- To create the Kleimheist, pull down on the sling in the direction of the anticipated load (in this case, downward). Wrap the sling 2 to 3 times around the rope if the Kleimheist does not provide enough friction.
11. Alpine Butterfly
Use: At the centre of a rope’s length, create a loop. It’s a popular knot for connecting a climber to the rope’s middle.
- Allows you to create a loop in the middle of a rope.
- Three ways to load it may be used.
- Many ways to tie
- It does not roll over when heavily loaded.
- Once loaded, it’s relatively simple to untie.
- It’s a little difficult to tie.
One of the most valuable, but underutilized knots on our list is the alpine butterfly. While there are a variety of other knots that are simpler to tie and may do many of the alpine butterfly’s functions, they are generally less effective in most circumstances.
The primary use of this knot is to form a loop in the center of a length of rope, although it can be used for other things. If you’re climbing, this loop may be utilized to join into or isolate a damaged portion of the rope.
The alpine butterfly may be loaded in three ways: from either end, from the loop itself, and from the loop. In addition, the alpine butterfly can carry large weights without succumbing to gravity.
It’s worth remembering that tying this knot might be tough. The fact that there are so many different ways to tie this knot doesn’t help either. We’ll look at one way today, but if you don’t like it, there are other ways to choose from.
If you were tying the knot with your right hand, we’ll describe our selected technique as well. If you are left-handed, you may employ this approach as well, however our instructions must be modified.
To tie an alpine butterfly:
- With your right hand, grab the rope’s working end. It’s worth noting that the working end is simply a part of your chosen rope’s middle.
- With your palm facing upwards, hold your left hand out in front of you.
- Starting from the right side of your hand and moving to the left, wrap the working end of the rope around your fingers twice. On the left side of your left hand, the working end of the rope should come to a stop. Using the standing end of the rope, it should create a cross on your palm.
- With your left hand, grab the top of the two circular loops you formed.
- Pull this loop toward your palm by pulling it down.
- On your palm, pass the loop through the crossing strands. Your fingers should now be pointing upward.
- Tighten the knot by pulling the loop upward, forming an alpine butterfly.
12. Sheet Bend
Use: Joining two ropes of uneven length. In sailing, it’s a pretty popular boat. Many other outdoor activities find it useful, although less common.
- Ropes of various sizes can be securely joined.
- Can be used to make a cargo net
When loaded, it becomes impossible to tie.
The sheet bend is one of the best techniques to join two ropes of unequal length, and it’s also known as the weaver’s knot. It has no equal in its capacity to effectively connect two rope sizes, despite the fact that it may also be applied to link ropes of similar size.
While care should be taken to supply lengthy tails if the sheet bend is going to be utilized in load-bearing circumstances, it may handle large loads. If either or both ropes are under tension, this knot cannot be tied.
If there is a significant size discrepancy between your two ropes, you might need to utilize the double sheet bend if you decide to tie a sheet bend. The conventional sheet bend is tied using a second loop around the bigger rope, exactly like the double sheet bending.
To tie a sheet bend:
- On the thicker of your two ropes, create a bight.Pass the working end of the thinner rope through the bight you made in step 1.
- Wrap the standing end of the heavier rope around the thinner rope’s working end.
- Pass the thinner rope’s working end underneath itself.
- If a double sheet bend is desired, repeat Steps 3 and 4.
- To make the sheet bend, tighten all strands.
13. European Death Knot
Use: Joining two ropes of equal diameter. For rappelling off of two ropes, this is a popular technique.
- It is simple to tie knots in this material.
- It’s simple to undo the knot if it’s not too tight.
- Getting stuck in low profile building is unusual
- Dress should be neat and clean.
- Requires a considerable amount of tail.
The European death knot is not inherently dangerous, despite its frightening-sounding name. The European death knot got its terrifying moniker from the fact that it has been linked to a number of climbing accidents, especially in Europe. It is also known as the flat overhand. Yet, this knot is not inherently dangerous; it can be safely tied using the proper knot-tying technique.
The need for a long tail with this knot is essential. Think about a tail that is at least 2 feet (60 cm) long.
That might be because this knot is prone to rolling over itself when put under very, very heavy loads, which sounds like an excessive amount of tail. When used in load-bearing situations, a considerable amount of extra tail is required to prevent this knot from rolling over itself and coming undone.
Also, please be aware that the flat figure eight knot, which is similar but not the same as the flat knot, should never be utilized for load-bearing situations. To form a figure eight shape, the flat figure eight is tied using an extra loop identical to the flat overhand. This hazardous knot is unsuitable for climbing or other similar activities since it rolls under very little loads.
To tie the European death knot:
- In one hand, grasp both ends of the rope.
- Using both ropes, tie a single overhand knot.
- Between the knot and the rope ends, ensure that there is at least 2 feet (60 cm) of tail.
- Make the European death knot by tightening all strands.
14. Munter Hitch
Use: Adjustable tensioning ropes are required. While it is now more prevalent in rope rescue systems, it has long been utilized to belay or rappel while climbing.
- The hitch can be adjusted to fit your needs.
- A mule knot can be used to keep it locked off.
- Does not jam
- This can be used for emergency rappels.
- Rope management is required on a regular basis.
- The rope gets a little twist as a result of the force.
The Munter hitch is a time-honored classic in the rock climbing and arborist communities. It’s also known as the “Italian hitch.” The Munter hitch is a fully customizable, non-jamming hitch that may be utilized in load-bearing situations. It is the primary benefit of the Munter hitch.
The Munter hitch became a popular climbing hitch in the 1950s after it was initially designed. Before the introduction of modern belay devices, that’s because it allowed for easy belaying and rappelling.
Several rope systems, such as those that make pulleys or lower an injured climber, can also employ the Munter. Nevertheless, since more knots or friction devices are needed to keep the Munter from moving on its own in load-bearing situations, it should be used with caution.
Finally, the Munter hitch adds some unwelcome kinks to your rope, which you should keep in mind. If you need to lower a heavy load or you want to avoid adding kinks to your rope, the super Munter version of this hitch is a popular alternative.
To create the Munter hitch in the center of a rope around a carabiner:
- Grab a piece of rope and a bight.
- Insert the carabiner into the bight of rope.
- Twist a piece of the rope into a loop by grabbing it and twisting it.
- To make a Munter hitch, clip the loop from Step 3 into the carabiner.
15. Carrick Bend
Use: When heavy loading is required, you may join two ends of a rope. It’s a popular knot for sailing and a design inspiration.
- Securely joins two ropes together
- When heavily loaded, it may be untied easily.
- Decorative design
- A cargo net may also be made using this method.
- Tying the knot can be tough.
- If not properly secured, it may be dangerous.
Carrick bend is thought to have originated in the British Isles, where it had long been used on heraldic badges, and is one of the world’s most classic knots. Cargo nets have also been made using it in the past. These days, the Carrick bend isn’t as popular as it should be, but that’s because it requires more skill to tie properly than some of the other options on our list.
Note that each rope’s tails must be diagonal from one another when tying the Carrick bend. Under a considerable weight, the bend might fail.
To tie a Carrick bend:
- With one hand, hold two ends of rope. Rope A is the rope in your right hand. Rope B is the strand in your left hand.
- Rope A should be used to make a loop. Make sure the rope’s tail is beneath its standing end.
- Place the working end of Rope B underneath the loop you created in step 2.
- Pass the tail of Rope A beneath and under the working end of Rope B.
- Thread the working end of Rope B through the loop in Rope A that you created in step 2.
- Rope A’s working end should be passed beneath its own standing end.
- To tighten and create the Carrick bend, pull both ropes’ tails and standing ends.
16. Girth Hitch
Use: Rope or webbing is attached to another object. In climbing, hammock set-ups, and other similar situations, this is a common option.
- It’s incredibly simple to knot.
- Webbing may be used to make it.
- Easy to untie
- Rope breaking strength is greatly reduced
- Both rope strands must be tensioned to the same level.
The girth hitch, sometimes known as the “cow’s hitch,” is one of the most well-known knots, and it may be utilized in a variety of situations. The girth hitch has become very popular in climbing and camping since it is commonly used to attach ropes or webbing to another object.
The girth hitch is employed in practically all aspects of our lives, such as when attaching the strings of zipper pulls to the zipper itself. It is one of the simplest knots to tie. Even if you didn’t know what it was called, you’ve probably experienced numerous girth hitches throughout your life.
Since they may be tied with rope or webbing, girth hitches are favored. Even after they’ve been loaded, they’re simple to unknot. Note, however, that the breaking strength of rope is greatly diminished by the girth hitch. Only when tension is evenly distributed between both rope strands may this technique be used. It might, however, fail if nothing else helps.
To create the girth hitch with a sling around another rope:
- Using the sling, make a bight.
- Wrap the sling’s bight around the rope’s rear end.
- Thread the sling’s other end through the bight that you made in step 1.
- Tighten the line and create a girth hitch by pulling down on the sling.
17. Figure Eight on a Bight
Use: Rope creates a secure bight by twisting it. Rock climbing, sailing, camping, caving, and other load-bearing activities are all very popular.
- It tightens itself up.
- Can make a loop of any size.
- When untied, it’s easier to overhand a bight.
- requires a large quantity of tail.
- Not great for use in webbing
- When subjected to large loads, it tends to bind.
The figure eight on a bight is a variant of the basic figure eight knot and is often referred to as the Flemish loop. While its application in climbing and sailing is possibly most prominent, it is particularly popular for outdoor activities across the board.
The figure eight on a bight is arguably more secure than other methods of producing a bight in a rope, such as the bowline. Since the knot hardens and becomes less likely to undone when formed with sufficient tail, it will stay this way.
When a bight is loaded, most people prefer the figure eight on a bight to the overhand on a bight. Nevertheless, because it is a jamming knot, untying the bowline after being loaded is even more difficult. It’s also worth noting that this knot isn’t appropriate for webbing. Instead of using webbing, use a bight to create an overhand.
To tie a figure eight on a bight:
- Make sure there is at least 1 foot (30cm) of space between your hand and the end of the bight when you grab a piece of rope.
- Make a figure eight knot using the bight in the same way that you would with a regular figure eight knot.
- To tighten the rope and form the figure eight on a bight, pull all strands of it.
18. Half Hitch
Use: Securing a rope to another object in a haphazard way. Many other hitches, knots, and bends are formed on this foundation.
- Easy to tie
- Other hitches may benefit from this useful skill.
- Easily untied after loading
- It is not weight-bearing in itself
The half hitch is an ancient hitch that serves as the foundation for a variety of other hitches, knots, and bends. It is an important skill for any knot tying enthusiast. It’s a non-jamming hitch that’s simple to load and tie, and it’s straightforward and simple to load.
Half hitches should not be tied on their own in load-bearing situations, which is a problem. Using another knot or a second half hitch (also known as two half hitches) in this situation is recommended. A clove hitch is formed by combining two half hitches.
To create a half hitch around an object, such as a pole:
- Wrap the rope around a pole or another item.
- To make a loop, wrap the rope’s active end around the standing end.
- Thread the rope’s working end through the loop you made in step 2.
- Tighten the half hitch by pulling on the rope’s standing end.
19. Orvis Knot
- It’s fairly simple to connect the two.
- Works well in thin lines
- It is possible to break a line with this material.
- Tightening at an angle to the hook is common
The so-called Orvis knot is a popular choice among anglers everywhere, having been invented as part of a competition hosted by the Orvis Company. For tiny fishing lines that must be linked to a fish hook, this knot is ideal.
The Orvis knot is comparable to the Palomar knot in certain ways, but it is more popular since it is easier to tie. In addition, since you’re reeling in big fish, the Orvis knot preserves a lot of a line’s original breaking strength.
You’ll need some cord and an item that you can loop around, such as a carabiner, in order to practice tying the Orvis knot.
To tie the Orvis knot:
- Thread the rope’s working end through the carabiner.
- To make a loop, pass the functioning end of the rope beneath the standing end.
- Thread the rope’s working end through the loop you made in step 2.
- Thread the working end of the rope twice through the loop you made in Step 3 to create a second cycle.
- To tighten the Orvis knot, pull on the rope’s working end. Trim the working end’s edge if you’re fishing.
20. Round Turn & Two Half Hitches
Use: Tying a rope to a stake is one way to do it. For mooring boats or securing fenders to the railing, this is a very popular choice.
- It is simple to tie and untie the knot.
- Surprisingly secure
- When the line is loaded, it may be knotted.
- Easy to untie
- It might slide around on itself if not secured properly.
The circular turn and two half hitches, another nautical classic, has long been utilized to moore down boats to a mooring.
Because of its simplicity of usage and the ability to tie one end of a rope while loading the other, it is very popular. After being loaded, it’s also simple to untie.
The only significant disadvantage of the circular turn and two half hitches is that it might come loose if it isn’t tight. This is not as prevalent in the case of a masted vessel.
The round turn and two half hitches are made up of two components: the round turn and the two half hitches. To practice tying this knot, you’ll need rope and a post, for example.
To tie the round turn and two half hitches:
- Two times wrap the working end of the rope around the post. The round turn is what we’re looking at right now.
- Tie a half hitch with the rope’s working end.
- Repeat step 2.
- Tighten and create the round turn and two half hitches by pulling on the standing end of the rope.
21. Directional Figure Eight
Use: Only loading a rope in one direction may create a loop.
- It’s rather simple to tie.
- Places less strain on the rope
- Once loaded, it’s fairly simple to undo.
- When loaded in the incorrect orientation, it may fail.
In situations when you need to put a load on the rope in only one direction, the directional figure eight is a variation of the figure eight on a bight.
The directional figure eight can put less strain on a rope when force is applied in only one direction, which may seem like a very particular use. An alpine butterfly knot is often the greatest option if you anticipate strain from more than one source. When loaded in the incorrect direction, the directional figure eight may capsize and fall.
To tie the directional figure eight:
- Create a loop of rope.
- Wrap the loop made in step 1 around the standing end of the rope in the opposite sense of how much weight is expected.
- Wrap the hanging end of the rope around the loop on the front.
- Thread the loop through the rope in the direction of the anticipated load, using an opening in the rope.
- To tighten and create the directional figure eight, pull down on the loop and on each of the other ropes.
22. Tensionless Hitch
Use: To connect a line to something, such as a post or tree. Without a significant drop in the rope’s breaking strength, it may be used under load.
- Easy to tie
- Tightens on itself
- Once loaded, it’s simple to untie.
- It can be applied to huge items.
- To bind, you’ll need a big item.
- A carabiner is usually required.
The tensionless hitch is a simple method to attach a line to a strong item that is popular among climbers and boaters. When used properly, this hitch can be used to secure a loaded line or prepare a tree anchor for toprope climbing.
The tensionless hitch has a major benefit of being simple to release once loaded. If you want to take over control of a line that has already been loaded, such as when tying up a boat, it may be useful.
It’s worth noting that you’ll need to locate an item that is at least 8 times the circumference of the rope you’re using for this hitch. On the tensionless hitch, you may not get enough friction to support a given load unless you use enough slack.
A rope, a carabiner, and an item to tie the tensionless hitch around, such as a tree or post, are required if you want to practice tying the tensionless hitch.
To tie the tensionless hitch:
- Keep the rope’s working end in your hand.
- To make a round turn, wrap the rope’s operating end around the item twice.
- On the working end of the rope, tie a figure eight on a bight.
- Attach a carabiner to the bight formed in step 3.
- The carabiner should be secured to the rope’s standing end.
- If needed (for rock climbing situations), secure the carabiner.
23. Zeppelin Bend
Use: Two ropes will be loaded and joined together. It’s usually best to use this option if you want to avoid knot jamming with other bends.
- Does not jam
- When unloaded, it’s simple to untie.
- When loaded, it can’t be untied.
- Long tails are required for this.
- It’s a little hard to tie this one up.
The zeppelin bend is a solid option if you need to join two ropes together. It’s one of the less commonly used bends on our list.
When loading these two ropes, it’s particularly advantageous, but you may want to avoid the jamming that happens with the double fisherman’s. This knot, however, can’t be untied while under load because it tightens on itself.
The zeppelin bend isn’t as popular as the double fisherman’s, despite being arguably superior. This may be due to the fact that tying the zeppelin bend correctly is more difficult. The zeppelin, like the double fisherman, requires lengthy tails (minimum 8 inches/20 cm).
To tie the zeppelin bend:
- Take one end of the rope in each hand and hold. Rope A is the strand in your right hand. Rope B is the name of the strand in your left hand.
- Rope A needs to be bent into a bight.
- Rope B should be cut in a bight.
- Overlap the bights of Rope A and Rope B with a bight of rope. Each rope’s tails should lie down in opposing directions. When Rope A’s tail is facing up and to the right, Rope B’s tail should face down and to the left.
- Pass the standing end of Rope A behind its tail.
- Pass the standing end of Rope B in front of its tail.
- Thread the bights of Ropes A and B together using Rope A’s tail as a guide.
- Thread the ends of Rope B and Rope A together through the bight using a threading needle.
- To strengthen and create the zeppelin bend, pull on all strands.
24. Spanish Bowline
Use: In a rope, make two loops. It may be utilized to astonish your pals or as an emergency harness.
- Two loops are created
- Strong and secure
- Once loaded, it’s simple to untie
- It’s a little tough to knot
The Spanish bowline is a variant of the conventional bowline that creates two loops and is less well-known.
It was historically used when you needed to make two loops in a rope, and it is still effective when you need to produce two loops in a rope. You may also use it to impress your pals by tying it into a pretty knot.
While it is simple to release a loaded Spanish bowline, tying one is much more difficult. Most individuals find that they can tie this knot with reasonable proficiency after some practice, although it is difficult to do so the first time.
To tie the Spanish bowline:
- Make a loop in the rope by weaving it.
- Fold the rope’s standing ends back and tuck the loop underneath.
- Fold the left loop over and to the right, leaving half of it intact.
- Fold the right loop over on itself and to the left. With two upper and lower loops, this should result in a butterfly-like shape in the rope.
- Thread the bottom left loop through the top left loop.
- Tuck the lower right loop through the upper right loop.
- The Spanish bowline is created by tightening both loops.
25. Trucker’s Hitch
Use: On tarp and tent guylines, create quick-release tension.
- A quick release mechanism is tensioned
- It’s theoretically possible to provide mechanical advantage.
- The rolling hitch is more difficult to change than the
Tensioning lines in a broad range of circumstances often utilize the trucker’s hitch. Truckers have long used it to secure loads and tarpaulins, as its name implies. If you need to tension guylines on tents and tarps, it’s also a good camping accessory.
The trucker’s hitch, in theory, may allow you to tighten a guyline more effectively than you could without it since it offers a modest mechanical advantage.
Even when the line is under load, it offers an simple-to-release mechanism. In windy situations, this makes it ideal for use on guylines. The rolling hitch, on the other hand, is less common and thus more difficult to adjust than the trucker’s hitch.
To tie the trucker’s hitch:
- 2 feet (60 cm) from your anchor point, create a figure eight on a bight or a directional figure eight in your line.
- Wrap the rope’s operating end around your anchor.
- Thread the rope’s working end through the bight produced in step 1.
- Until you reach the required tension, pull the working end of the rope backward toward your anchor point.
- To complete the trucker’s hitch, make two half hits below the bight.
Knot vs Hitch vs Bend: What’s in a Name?
The terms “knot,” “hitch,” and “bend” appear to be used interchangeably in this article. However, these three methods have a technical variation.
It’s worth noting the distinction between these terms before you begin your knot-tying profession, since we used them interchangeably in some of our instructions for simplicity’s sake. Here’s what you need to know about it:
- A real knot is a knot that may maintain its own shape while being wrapped around another line or object without the need of being wrapped around another line. The figure eight knot is an example.
- Join two ropes, lines, or webbing by using the bend technique. Carrick bend, for example.
- Hitch – A knot that keeps its shape and form by looping itself around another rope or an item. Clove hitch, for example.