Learn to tie the best knots for camping and survival here, and add another survival skill handy for your outdoor adventures!
In this article:
How to Tie the Best Knots for Camping and Survival
Tying knots is an essential survival skill far too few of us mastered. We learned how to tie our shoelaces as kids, and some of us learned how to tie a tie.
After which, most of us stopped learning new knots to tie, which is a shame… Whether camping or in a long term survival situation, knowing different types of knots (and HOW to tie a knot correctly, and WHEN to use each one) can mean the difference between life and death.
The key is to master the basic knots for beginners and take it from there. When SHTF, you’ll need to move quickly but efficiently.
Watch Craig Caudill from DansDepot show you how to make the best knots for survival and camping. Then scroll down to see how it’s done step-by-step.
These knots can be applied to your regular cordage like paracord but for demonstration purposes, a rope and a tree will be used.
1. Using a Rope Without a Knot
Anybody can tie a knot. The question is, can anybody tie a knot and get it undone easily so the rope can be used again?
Sometimes when using a rope, you don’t have to actually use a knot. You just have to put it against something and put tension on it.
We’re going to wrap this rope around the tree trunk. So I have the long end in my right hand and the working end on my left.
Take the working end and wrap it around the long end. Do this several times, then move the wrapped section around the back of the tree.
Now, with the tension on it, I can then pull the tension here. This is not what I would consider a rope to hang my life on, but this will create a lot of tension and it is going to stay.
And the cool thing about it is when I need to pick up and go, I grab the end of the rope which is loose and it’s free.
2. Half Hitches
Take the rope and wrap it around the tree. Next, lay the working end on top of itself, then pull it up through the hole.
Repeat. And you have two half hitches.
This knot is pretty secure. It’s not the best knot, but you can hang off on a knot like this easily. It’s not for climbers either but it’s good for basic survival and camping.
The other cool thing about this knot, like most others, is the loop on top of it. You do your best to push it back over the top and it will loosen up.
3. Round Turn with Two Half Hitches
We’re going to use the same knot but this provides more tension so that the rope won’t slip as easily. All you do is take the rope again and wrap it around the tree.
Now you have more tension on the rope as it is wrapped around the tree and snagging against it. Next, apply the steps for half hitches.
This time, you have not only the knot but you have the rope wrapped around the tree for tension. You have a really secure setup tied to this tree.
Again, this is not for climbers but for campers and survival. I take my loop, tug and pull, and the knot comes off rather easily.
4. Clove Hitch
Take the working end of your rope and put it underneath the long end. Wrap the rope all around the tree.
Where you wrapped it, take it back underneath and you have a clove hitch. Tension pulls this but you have to make sure the tension is going in this direction.
This knot will not work very well with a diagonal. You need to make sure the tension is perpendicular to the knot or whatever it is you’re tying off.
Pull the tension against the knot itself. As soon as I get diagonal, the knot comes off.
But, it is good when it’s time to untie because you can remove the rope rather easily.
Make sure you always have plenty of rope handy, so check out our full selection of paracords here!
Learn some bushcraft essential knots for shelter and tarp setups in this video from MCQ Bushcraft & Wilderness Life:
Ropes and lines may have evolved through the years with the making of paracords. Yet, knots and tying techniques are just the same used centuries ago in many areas from fishing, sailing, to tent-pitching.
This is why learning to tie knots is one of the survival skills you need to have handy. These best knots for camping is a good place to start learning basic tricks.
Which of this selection of the best knots for camping do you often use? Tell us all about it in the comments section below!
- 40 Essential Knots Every Survivalist Needs To Know
- How To Make A Hammock In The Rainforest And Elsewhere
- Paracord Knots And Hitches | How To Make Paracord Hitches
For awesome survival gear you can’t make at home, check out the Survival Life Store!
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on August 12, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.