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How to Tie Several Useful Knots out of Paracord

By Matt Hawkins

If you plan on using a paracord belt or other paracord accessory as a utility tool when the situation calls for it, it is important to understand how to tie proper knots with paracord. Without a secure knot, the paracord may be rendered useless since the knot will slip and the strength of the paracord will be wasted.

Fortunately, there are a variety of useful knots that are simple to learn and will serve you well in a variety of situations. Before getting started though, make sure you have some paracord to work with. You can find several types and colors here on Amazon.

Half Hitch

paracord half hitch

The hitch class of knots is perhaps the most useful to know because these knots have such a wide range of applications. In a nutshell, hitches allow you to quickly and easily secure a line to a fixed anchor point, such as a truck or tree, for example. A half hitch is the simplest type of hitch, and like the other hitches, will grip tighter on the anchor point with increasing tension on the line.

To tie a half hitch, first wrap the line around the anchor point, then wrap the end around the main line. Next, feed the end through the loop just formed and take the slack out. This completes the half hitch. For additional strength, another half hitch is commonly tied around the main line to form what is called a double half hitch.

Square Knot

paracord square knot

If you need to tie two separate pieces of paracord (or string, or rope) together to make a longer length, a square knot is the way to go. Like the half hitch, the square knot is one of the easiest knots to learn and execute. In addition, it is very secure, yet easy to untie when necessary.

To tie a square knot, while holding one piece of paracord in each hand, cross the pieces over to form an X. Then, as if you were tying a bow in your shoelace, wrap one piece around the other. One piece should be sticking out to the right and the other to the left. Next, cross the pieces over again to form another X. Finally, wrap one piece around the other again, this time in the other direction, and pull on the free ends to tighten your newly formed square knot.

Clove Hitch

paracord clove hitch

A clove hitch is an easy way to securely tie something to a tree, pole, or branch. It is especially useful for temporary uses due to its adjustability.

To tie a clove hitch, first loop the paracord around the object being secured. Next, while holding one end in each hand, cross the end in your right hand over the end in your left hand to form an X. Then, wrap the end in your right hand back around the object as before, making sure to leave the wrap loose. Finally, with the same end back in front of the object, poke it underneath the segment of paracord it was just wrapped around.


paracord bowline

A bowline is a great knot to learn for rock climbing or rescues, since it can be quickly tied around one’s waist to serve as a strong safety harness that can be pulled or secured at its other end, depending on the situation.

To tie a bowline, first form a small loop. Then, start forming another loop, but instead of looping around again, pass the end of the paracord through the small loop (from below) and wrap it around the standing part of the paracord at the opposite end. Then continue feeding the end back through the small loop (from above) and tighten. The bowline is often tied around one’s own waist to secure them to a rescuer or other sturdy object, or it can be tied around an object in order to hoist it up.

If you plan on really getting the most out of your paracord belt or other accessories, make sure to learn and practice these knots. They will literally take you just minutes to learn and can not only enrich your outdoor experience, but potentially save yourself or someone else’s life as well.