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Essential knots for climbers
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Apr 10, 2013
Ronin
I would like to build a compendium here of knots essential for climbers to learn. Links are welcome as well as any other resources.

I couldn't find a similar thread so I thought I'd start one here.
Sean Brady
From Boulder, Colorado
Joined Aug 3, 2012
33 points
Apr 10, 2013
Valor Over Discretion (5.8), RRG
Animated Knots Brian Hudson
From Lenoir, NC
Joined Dec 10, 2010
112 points
Apr 10, 2013
RJN
^^^^WOW^^^^ nice find. Thanks Ryan N
From Bellingham, WA
Joined May 21, 2009
183 points
Apr 10, 2013
Ronin
Animated knots is a great reference. Of note are:

Figure 8 follow through
Figure 8 on a bight
Double overhand (edk)
Double overhand on a bight
Double fisherman's
Clove hitch
Klemheist
Munter (and munter mule)
Prussik
Water knot

Anything I'm missing?
Sean Brady
From Boulder, Colorado
Joined Aug 3, 2012
33 points
Apr 10, 2013
Valor Over Discretion (5.8), RRG
garda hitch (do any of you actually use this?)
bachmann hitch
Brian Hudson
From Lenoir, NC
Joined Dec 10, 2010
112 points
Apr 10, 2013
High Exposure
Maybe not "essential" but nice to know

Inline Figure 8
French Prusik (Autoblock)
Alpine Butterfly

FB Knot (Klemheist variation)
DT-FK Knot (scroll down - basically a "flat double fishermans")

Sean, I think the EDK is a "flat overhand" not a "double overhand".
What's a "double overhand on a bight"?
wivanoff
Joined Mar 3, 2012
121 points
Apr 10, 2013
Me scaring years off my mom's life
Triple granny knot with loop flourish Austin Baird
From SLC, Utah
Joined Apr 26, 2009
101 points
Apr 10, 2013
Mt. Agassiz
wivanoff wrote:
What's a "double overhand on a bight"?


I could be mistaken, but I think Sean was referring to a Bowline on a Bight which sort of starts off as an overhand on a bight (if not, also a useful knot).

Also can't believe the bowline (including variations) hasn't been mentioned.
Ryan Nevius
From The Range of Light
Joined Dec 29, 2010
787 points
Apr 10, 2013
Summit of my first tower, the Rectory via Fine Jad...
One more I haven't seen included yet is the bunny ears figure 8.

I use this when slapping a rope straight onto an anchor for a fixed rappel, for example. No cordelette needed and only requires 2 carabiners for a 2 bolt anchor
Dylan Weldin
From Austin, Texas
Joined Dec 5, 2010
1,494 points
Apr 10, 2013
fig 8 ...

prussic ...

double fishermans ..

thats about it ... a beginner can get by with those 3 for quite a while

theres plenty more ... but thats when you start doing bigger better stuff ...

one thing that i see as a warning sign is beginners learning all these fancy knots, but not being proficient with tying em when they are cold, tired, hungry, wet, in the dark ....

some do a knot once or twice, without anyone to check em or understanding em.... and think they are all set ...

you dont need a lot of knots ... but you need to know em by heart, in your sleep, while being mauled by a hungry bear

KISS

;)
bearbreeder
Joined Mar 1, 2009
1,886 points
Apr 10, 2013
Out of the blue.  Photo by Mike W.
bearbreeder wrote:
while being mauled by a hungry bear KISS ;)


Shit. I forgot what knot to use in this situation. Can you help!
Greg D
From Here
Joined Apr 5, 2006
960 points
Apr 10, 2013
Greg D wrote:
Shit. I forgot what knot to use in this situation. Can you help!


the one that allows you to strangle yourself so you dont feel the bear slowly devouring your tender tasty innards =P
bearbreeder
Joined Mar 1, 2009
1,886 points
Apr 10, 2013
Awesome slab climb right out of the water! Rogers ...
Animated knots for sure!

I really only use:

Figure 8's - on a bight and regular
Grapevine knot
Clove hitch
Munter
Prussik
Overhand knot
Ring Bend knot
Frost knot - if I was making my own etriers

That's all I ever needed really.
NYClimber
From New York
Joined Jul 17, 2011
180 points
Administrator
Apr 10, 2013
On Everleigh Club Crack.  Photo by Burt Lindquist.
Brian Hudson wrote:
garda hitch (do any of you actually use this?) bachmann hitch


I use the garda for hauling daypacks
Doug Hemken
Joined Oct 1, 2004
5,192 points
Apr 10, 2013
The wife and I road-trippin on the Connie.
In order of importance:

8 follow thru
8 on a bight
Double Fisherman - Tie-in Backup
Double Fisherman - Stopper
Double/Triple Fisherman - Joining two ropes - AKA "Grapevine"
Flat Overhand - EDK
Water Knot
Clove Hitch
Munter
Mule
Prussik
Autoblock
Alpine butterfly
Double Figure 8 (Bunny Ears)
Bowline on a bite (another bunny ears knot)
Bowline Tie-In Variants
Prussik Variants
Larry S
From Easton, Pennsylvania
Joined May 28, 2010
919 points
Apr 10, 2013
You guys are kidding ? right ?

figure 8

clove hitch
john strand
From southern colo
Joined May 22, 2008
2,259 points
Apr 10, 2013
Awesome slab climb right out of the water! Rogers ...
I know! I routinely use about 4 knots all the time.

Once my slings are made, etc. I use but a Fig 8, Clove Hitch, Autoblock and Prussik. That's about it!
NYClimber
From New York
Joined Jul 17, 2011
180 points
Apr 10, 2013
ESP since this was a beginner thread.. you don't need to know all that other crap now,,, or maybe ever john strand
From southern colo
Joined May 22, 2008
2,259 points
Apr 10, 2013
You can do most things with an 8 and a clove hitch.

But not knowing a friction knot and an alpine butterfly when you need them will ruin you. I'll also add munter (half clove hitch). Thing is super handy.
Pete Spri
Joined Jun 1, 2009
138 points
Apr 10, 2013
john strand wrote:
ESP since this was a beginner thread.. you don't need to know all that other crap now,,, or maybe ever

Just because you don't know how to escape a belay doesn't mean it's not necessary to know a friction knot.
Pete Spri
Joined Jun 1, 2009
138 points
Apr 10, 2013
Spri wrote:
You can do most things with an 8 and a clove hitch. But not knowing a friction knot and an alpine butterfly when you need them will ruin you. I'll also add munter (half clove hitch). Thing is super handy.


In what situations is an alpine butterfly essential?
Kyle Napierkowski
Joined Oct 24, 2012
7 points
Apr 10, 2013
Middle person in a rope team, tying out a core shot of rope, a couple of tricky pro placements. Pete Spri
Joined Jun 1, 2009
138 points
Apr 10, 2013
gossamer
fig 8, EKD, Clove hitch. extra credit for some form of advanced bowline for tying in. Jon Marek
From SLC
Joined Sep 30, 2009
2,606 points
Apr 11, 2013
Awesome slab climb right out of the water! Rogers ...
Spri wrote:
Just because you don't know how to escape a belay doesn't mean it's not necessary to know a friction knot.


Spri - all you need to learn is a Prussick knot to excape any belay, jug, etc. which takes maybe an entire 5-10 mins to learn how to tie and use. SIMPLE!
NYClimber
From New York
Joined Jul 17, 2011
180 points
Apr 11, 2013
I would add the becketts bend to the list incase you have to tie togather two different rope diameters. Also bowline on a bite for various anchoring scenerios and also a swiss seat Brasky
Joined Jul 9, 2012
1 points
Apr 11, 2013
NYClimber wrote:
Spri - all you need to learn is a Prussick knot to excape any belay, jug, etc. which takes maybe an entire 5-10 mins to learn how to tie and use. SIMPLE!

Totally, which is why it shocks me that people are only listing an 8 and a clove hitch. That is a recipe for trouble. Learn a friction knot too!
Pete Spri
Joined Jun 1, 2009
138 points


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