How to Tie a Bowline Knot
“Trust in God, but tie up your horse”
The “King of Knots” and it comes with a handy mnemonic
to help you remember how to tie this essential knot for
riders; the rabbit runs out the hole, goes around the tree,
then back down the hole.
When tied properly the Bowline is the foundation for
highlines, tying to hitching posts, and any other situation
where you want a loop that won’t slip under pressure and is
easy to untie.
The steps to a bowline are:
- Your lead line (the “Tree”) - Wrap the lead line around
the object you are going to tie the horse to. If tying to
a tree, several wraps will help prevent harm to the bark.
- Form a loop (the “Hole”) in the line on the side where
the horse is.
- The rabbit runs out the hole - Pass the far end (where
the horse isn't) of the line through the loop you just
- Continue running the working end around the standing
portion of the line (The rabbit runs around the tree).
- Now make a bight in the working end and pass that
through the first loop (The rabbit goes back down the
- Make sure that the end of the rope does not pass
though, this is the “slippery” part of the knot that allows
it to untie quickly.
- Tighten and you have a knot that won’t slip or jam, and
unties with ease when you’re ready.
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