4 Essential Camping Knots

Knot tying is a lost art form, due in part to bungee cords, ratchet straps, and other devices that allow you to secure a rope without actually tying a knot. While those devices certainly have their place (especially ratchet straps), there are many situations where it is faster to simply know which knot to tie. In addition to that, it’s a skill that develops confidence in the outdoors, and also gives you something to teach others.

Learning how to tie camping knots isn’t that difficult; it’s remembering what to use them for. We’ve put together four essential camping knots, and what they’re for.

camping knots

Bowline Knot

The Bowline knot is useful for a lot of things, and works particularly well for a clothesline because it is so secure with a load on the line.

Learn the Bowline


camping knots

Square knot

The Square Knot is easy to tie and works great for lugging firewood back to the campsite.

Learn the Square Knot


camping knots

Mooring hitch

The Mooring Hitch is a little more complex when it comes to knots, but it’s a great quick-release knot to know. The camp shower will be up and down the tree all weekend, so this makes it much easier.

Learn the Mooring Hitch


camping knots

Blake’s hitch

You generally see the Taut Line Hitch used for guy lines, but with a small diameter rope it likes to slide around under a heavy load if you don’t get it exactly right. We prefer Blake’s Hitch as a moveable knot. It’s generally used by arborists, and the way we tie it here is a slightly modified version. However, it is extremely secure, and can still be adjusted.

Learn Blake’s Hitch