Knots are frequently a foreign subject for new leaders. However, taking the time to learn them will serve you and your Scouts as well on campouts and other occasions.

Knots are a skill taught at every level of Scouting from Cub to Boy Scout.

  • The Wolf Cub will find them in Elective 17 – Tie It Right.
  • The Bear will encounter them in Achievement 22 – Tying It All Up.
  • Webelos will have a chance in the Outdoorsman requirements.
Knot Name Scout Level Knot Type Comments and Uses
Overhand Wolf Stopper Temporary whipping.
End of line stopper knot.
The simplest knot.
Square Knot Wolf, Bear, Weblos Joining The square knot is generally uses for tying bandages and general bundle tying. It is NOT a reliable method for joining two ropes that are under strain as the knot can be broken easily and creates a risk. Outside the US this is known as a reef knot.
Sheet Bend Bear, Weblos Bend The sheet bend, while not required, is illustrated in the Bear, Webelos, Boy Scout Handbooks. It is reliable under load and particularly good for joining ropes of different sizes (the smaller line should follow the pattern of the light line in the illustration).It is a must know knotting basic.
Bowline Bear, Weblos Loop The bowline is the universal fixed end loop. It may be tied in a variety of sizes for many uses. It is frequently referred to as a rescue knot due to its use in rescue harnesses. It does not slip. If you look closely you will see that it is related to the sheet bend.
Clove Hitch Weblos Hitch The clove hitch is a quick method for securing a line to a post. It may be tied very quickly with two overhand loops dropped onto the post. Load should be applied perpendicular to the post.
Two Half Hitches Bear, Weblos Hitch Two half hitches will serve well in attaching lines to eyes on tents, dining flies and other items where an attachment of a line is needed.
Tautline Hitch Weblos Hitch The tautline is versatile because it is an adjustable loop which holds its adjustment under tension. Relieve the tension, adjust to size and reapply tension. This used in conjunction with two half hitches will provide a taut hold for tent and fly lines.
Timber Hitch Hitch Beginning for diagonal lashing, drawing the spars together.

Here is a link to download instructions for these knots

Other Knot Resources:

Here is a link to some Strong Knots to Know for Camping, thanks to Tony, a Cub Scout in Pack 580 in Yorba Linda, CA for sending it in.