Scoutcraft Knots

  • Reef Knot: Also known as the square knot, the reef knot can be used where safety is not an issue (such as tying string around a parcel).

  • Clove Hitch: In Scouting, the clove hitch is often used when starting a lashing. By itself, the clove hitch is not very secure, especially if there isn’t a consistent load to keep it tight. As it is a simple knot, it may also fail under too much strain. Where using a single knot to secure a line to a fixed object, consider other knots such as the bowline, or a round turn and two half hitches. The clove hitch can also be formed with loops (‘bunny ears’) when tying the knot over the end of a pole.

  • Sheet Bend: The sheet bend is useful for joining two knots of unequal size. The larger rope should be used to form the loop and the smaller rope tied to the larger (see the video!). It’s similar in structure to the bowline – see if you can spot the differences!

  • Rolling Hitch: The rolling hitch is most famous as the rope used to tie guy lines on a tent, and while it’s secure, it allows for guy lines to be tightened easily. It’s often tied incorrectly, but is not hard with a little practice. It is good with the natural fibre ropes (such as sisal) used in scouting, but may not be secure with slippery synthetic ropes.