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Bowline Knot

This is a most useful knot employed to form a loop which will not slip. Running bowlines are formed by making a bowline round its own standing part. It is the most common and convenient temporary running noose.

Bowline knot illustration

The sailor's knot par excellence, is the "Bow-line" and wherever we find sailors, or seamen, we will find this knot in one or another of its various forms. When you can readily and surely tie this knot every time, you may feel yourself on the road to "Marline-spike Seamanship," for it is a true sailor's knot and never slips, jams, or fails; is easily and quickly untied, and is useful in a hundred places around boats or in fact in any walk of life.

How to Tie a Bowline Knot

Video: Bowline Knot

Learn how to tie a bowline knot.

Bowline Knot tying illustration

  1. In A the rope is shown with a bight or cuckold's neck formed with the end over the standing part.
  2. Pass A back through the bight, under, then over, then under, as shown in B.
  3. Then over and down through the bight, as shown in C and D.
  4. Draw taut, as in the first image above.