Introduction: How to Tie a Sheepshank

About: I am a teenager who loves to tinker around with anything he can get his hands on. I enjoy playing the church organ, and would love to hear your compositions, too! God bless! —MRH06

So, this time I thought I might start with a great story about the sheepshank.
So there was once this climber. But he was no ordinary climber. He was a smart climber. That’s right, he used his smarts, his rope, and his knots to get him down a mountain face after his rope started to fray on him. So he thought, “Ok, so, I’m in this situation here where I have a frayed rope up at the top. What do I do?” And then it dawned on him that he could use a sheepshank to get down. You see, a sheepshank can be used to bypass a worn section of rope and you’ll see how that’s so in just a minute. So he climbed back up the face, and when he got to the top, he tied two sheepshanks. One to get around the fray, and another to fasten it to the top of the mountain. Sheepshanks are only good if they’re kept under constant tension, or else they’ll fall right apart. So with his two knots tied he proceeded down the mountain and he was just fine in the end.
So, this knot suddenly seems pretty cool, but now you’re probably wondering how to tie this knot. So then, I’m going to teach you how to tie a sheepshank now!


There’s not much that you’re going to need for this project. Just some rope, two hands, and 10 fingers is all you need. Let’s get started!

Step 1: Loop

Make 3 underhand loops as shown in the pictures.

Step 2: Flip

Flip the left loop over the center loop so that the center loop is through the left loop.

Step 3: Slide

Now slide the right loop over the center loop. See the pictures.

Step 4: Pull and Fair

Now pull your knot tight, and make it look all pretty (fairing). And there you have it! A sheepshank!

Step 5: Notes

• When using this knot to bypass a worm section of rope, you should put the worn section at the top of the center loop.
• In my Boy Scout Troop, we call this knot the “Shaun The Sheep Knot”. Post a comment for what silly names you come up with for the sheepshank!

Rope & String Speed Challenge

Participated in the
Rope & String Speed Challenge