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The Versatile Item Every Prepper Should Pack

March 4, 2013 by  

The Versatile Item Every Prepper Should Pack

Last week, I was hanging out with my friend, “Above Average” Joe from, when I saw his paracord lanyard. I played dumb and asked him what it was for.

Joe passionately explained a little history of paracord and told me about many of the different ways it can be used.

He said that there were well more than 100 different uses for paracord.

I laughed at him to give him more of a hard time and asked him to list the 100 uses. I said that if he could do so on the spot, I would take him to his favorite steak place and buy him dinner.

He listed something like 50, and I ended up having to buy him dinner.

Later, we had a fun time with all of our readers by putting out this list of uses. I hope you can add to it as well.

There are obviously thousands of uses of paracord, but it’s fun to play these games to keep yourself informed and maybe even learn some new tricks with it.

Below is the list. Let’s see how many we can come up with together.

  • Use it to tie a tarp to trees.
  • Make a lanyard to hold items (knife, keys etc.).
  • Make an emergency paracord wristband.
  • Make an emergency snare from an inner strand.
  • Use it as fishing line (created from the inner strands).
  • Use it to lace your boots.
  • Floss with an inner strand.
  • Use it as a dog lead.
  • Use an inner strand as an emergency suture.
  • Wrap a knife handle.
  • Fashion a bow drill.
  • Use it as a clothesline.
  • Make a place to sit by lashing a long log horizontally to two trees.
  • Repair a sail in an emergency.
  • Use as a belt for your trousers.
  • Hang a kettle or cooking pot over a fire.
  • Use the inner strands as thread for sewing.
  • Make a fishing net from inner strands.
  • Create a net hammock.
  • Make a sling.
  • Hobble your horse.
  • Attach to tin cans or anything to make noise to create a perimeter trip wire.
  • Use it as a watch strap.
  • Rig up a quick bow stringer when you’ve forgotten yours.
  • Carry gear on your back when you don’t have a rucksack.
  • Clean a platypus hose by tying granny knots in it and pulling it through.
  • Tie house keys to forgetful children.
  • Use several strands as an emergency tow rope.
  • Use as a pulley line for dragging big bits of wood up the side of a hill.
  • Use as a standby strop for polishing a razor.
  • Tie a heavy knot in the middle of it to make a jump rope.
  • Hang mesh frames for propagating plants in greenhouse.
  • Create a swing for kids for when they become bored.
  • Rappel down a cliff edge.
  • Use it as a headband or hair tie.
  • Bundle it around firewood for easy carrying.
  • Tie it to a sled so you can drag the sled during the heavy snow.
  • Hang a light over the designated latrine for nighttime.
  • Replace a snapped pull string on older lights.
  • Fashion a fuse.
  • Hang a mirror or other large object.
  • Use it as strap wrench or Spanish windlass.
  • Use it as a bore cleaner to clean a firearm.
  • Make a tire swing.
  • Hang a hammock.
  • Hang an emergency whistle around your neck.
  • Fashion a pull cord for a chain saw, boat engine, lawn mower or trimmer.
  • Use as a tourniquet.
  • Tie down and secure the straps and belts of rucksacks when traveling.
  • Replace a drawstring cord in a rucksack or on gaiters.
  • Use as tent guy lines.
  • Tie your rucksack to something solid.
  • Tie down a rucksack lid if the buckles are broken.
  • Make an improvised stretcher by lashing poles together and making a net.
  • Lash poles together to make a shelter.
  • Lash a blade to a long pole in order to use as a spear for hunting.
  • Wrap a mini flashlight handle for grip.
  • Use to lower equipment and packs down cliff edges.
  • Create a snare.
  • Entertain yourself during stressful times. Tying and untying knots can take your mind off of your current situation.
  • Replace a broken handle on a knife or machete.
  • Create a bow string for a bow and arrow.
  • Hang a kill or your rucksack out of reach of animals at night.
  • Moor your boat to a dock.
  • Replace a broken water ski rope.
  • Teach yourself to tie lifesaving knots.
  • Use it to collect water. (Tie a knot and place it inside a plastic bottle. Hang it from a rock or damp-surface area. The water will collect on the cord and drip into the bottle.)
  • Place around a tree when climbing to add more grip.
  • Use it to make improvised snow shoes.
  • Make a sling for killing small animals.
  • Create a bullwhip for defense or entertainment.
  • Create trot lines for fishing.
  • Create a gill net for fishing.
  • Lash together multiple pieces for a stronger cord.

Leave your comments and ideas below.

Tim Young

is the Managing Editor at Absolute Rights and has been featured on Fox News, Forbes, and The London Daily Telegraph. You can see Tim's latest work by clicking here.

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  • FreedomFighter

    Rifle sling
    Make a belt
    Emergency dog leash/collar
    Crabbing line using individual threads and make a crab net on a branch
    Hang meat for smoking/curing

    My favorite:
    *Tie up screaming liberals after the collapse as they will finally realize they were wrong and go insane*

    Laus Deo
    Semper FI

    • Brad


    • Artemus

      Why wait for the collapse, do it now. I’m stocking up.

  • Larry

    Double. quadruple or octuple to gain a tow rope of impressive strength.

  • Mr Diesel

    You take about 9 feet of 550 Paracord in any color and attach to knives or zipper tabs on backpacks. This is my favorite set of instructions.

  • ToughGuy1

    Great survival tactics!

  • windKnott

    Use as a clothes line inside a tent.
    Use single thread to tie fishing flies.
    A make shift rifle sling.
    Your own “David & Goliath” sling.
    Tail Rope for landing fish.
    Fish stringer

  • http://PersonalLibertyDigest Quique

    While I know what a platypus is, What the blazes is a ‘platypus hose’?
    Please enlighten me.

    • rocketride

      I was wondering the same thing, so I just “googled” it. The “platypus” in question is a kind of collapsible water bottle with a hose for hands-free drinking while hiking or the like.

  • ibcamn

    individual line(threads) and small breanch,snare loop—individual line run taunt across path(or stairs,doorway,etc.)attached to grenade key(smoke,marker )claymore.—-rip cord line(attached to plane)for deployment of parachute at low level flight.—-all types of bobby traps(works best in wooded area,urban enviroment)—doom an gloom stuff(thousand and one uses)—and of course to be worn by the Hollywood a-holes purely decrotive fashion statement,kinda like when everybody started wearing skulls n crossbones after “pirates of the carribean”came out!(then they added sparkles an beads to them!–now with paracords they add bright pink and green an purple,etc…..sickening!!

  • AK Tom

    -Build a meat pole for hunting camp. -Hanging quarters from said meat pole. -Guy ropes for tent.

  • boyscout

    Yes, all very true. Still n o substitute for detcord.

    • ibcamn

      Amen boyscout…ha ha

  • Bill Stringfield

    Pull the grips off your revolver and tie a short piece of either the outer sheath or a single inner strand around grip frame. Re-attach grips and you have a loop to attach a lanyard to keep from losing your revolver. Can be used on semi-auto pistols, also. Just make sure you don’t block magazine insertion and removal.

  • Jerry

    at night, when in bed, secure yourself to the refridge, in case of pesky sink holes

  • JimH

    I use it to tie my dry boxes and gear to the canoe in case we tip over.

  • http://PersonalLibertyDigest Joe Tomlinson

    Another use of parachute cord: Using a pocket torche or a butane lighter, parachute cord can be melted to repair or weld certain broken plastic items, or even leather. Works best on nylon items, but will also weld some other types of plastic. To repair tent fabric, for example, first sew the rip with the inner threads of the cord, then melt additional cord over the repaired area. This works best with canvass. It will soak in and form a stiff but waterproof repair. In cold weather, this requires careful re-melting over a fuel cook stove to get the melted cord to soak in. Don’t try this with nylon tent material as the nylon material will melt first. Alternatively, use super glue to fill the sewn repair.


  • Bimbam

    He forgot the 101st one. To hang someone! Proven useful during times of tyranny and traitors. Save bullets, you know.

    • Old Henry

      I was going to suggest using it to tie politicians to trees out in the woods. It sounded like the “green thing” to do. The wildlife gotta eat too doncha know…

      • Joe H

        Yeah, Use them as bear bait in Alaska!!!! Perfectly legal to bait a bear while “hunting” one!! They don’t say WHAT to use as bait!!!

  • Chuck S

    I assume he’s talking about parachute cord. I don’t know about what’s used now, but 40 years ago a parachute had 28 or 32 nylon cords. In our skydiving club we called them “550 cord”, since each one was rated for 550 pounds. Each one had 7 inner cords inside a sheath.

  • frank costa

    Quite a list. I would like to add: make a wick for an emergency light using fat or oil. Works best with a paper clip, or wire from a bread wrapper to stiffen it.

  • Newspooner

    The list was quickly boring, so I stopped reading. Did anyone mention a garrotte?

    • Lorenzo Llama

      For You Old Bored one??

  • Currahee Warrior

    It can also be used to wrap under the chin of our imperial leader as to secure the crown on top of his enlarged cranium…

  • Old Beekeeper

    Great to tie a honeybee swarm trap in a tree.


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