Introduction: Paracord Hammock Anchor Cord

About: I love doing projects and this site is great for sharing mine and finding new ones!

     As an avid Boy Scout, I have spent a lot of time camping out in the woods.  About the age of 13 or so, we started hiking , and I decided to escalate my awesomeness to Hammock camping versus Tent camping.

     After a while, I got bored of tying, untying, retying, etc of the common tree anchor, which usually consists of a knot to the hammock end, looping the tree, and a taut line hitch.  This usually doesn't take a lot of time, but I am a little bit lazy, and enjoy making new things.  That's when I decided to up my game, and make a device to save me some time.

     To be honest, this is inspired by the Eagle's Nest Outfitters Slap Strap System.  So...this is also a DIY/Poor Man's solution to another more expensive solution.  Plus it's pretty simple and on a fairly basic level, so fear not!

     The basic concept is a single cord that has loops on either ends, and regularly spaced loops in between.  The cord goes around the tree and through one of the end loops to tighten on the tree.  Then the hammock is attached to the loop in the middle that produces the desired height of hammock off the ground.

     The finished length of my cord is ~5 ft (60 in) from end loop to end loop.  I've found this will fit around most trees, but you can make your cord to any length (I like to have a few extra feet, just in case).

PS. This is being entered in the Paracord contest which is on-going, vote me up!

Step 1: Ingredients

1. Paracord -> ~100 inches (over 8 ft, 13 in from the last knot per number of sections, I have 8 loops total, which means 7 sections)

2. Lighter, or Matches, or other Flame Source (don't hurt yourself...)

3. Sharp object for cutting the cord to length (again...don't hurt yourself...) I used a folding utility knife that takes razor blades that I got from (insert local name) hardware store.

4. Load-Bearing Carabiner (~ 2x $3 I think) -> I have 2 8mm 350lbs test Snap-Link Carabiners.  With two, it should be strong enough to keep me and possibly another up off the ground.

5. Hammock (~$15 for a cheap-ish one)-> To use with your awesome new hammock anchors.  My hammock is a lightweight travel hammock that I picked up from my local camping store.

     Don't hurt yourself in the making of this, I am no way responsible for your mistakes.

Step 2: Anchor Knot

     After fusing the ends of the rope, the first step is to tie a bowline, which is one of my favorite knots.  This knot is good for creating a loop that is extremely strong and will not pull loose accidentally.  That is what makes this the perfect anchor knot for this.  I'm not gonna lie, I kinda tie this knot by gut, and thus can't teach it very well, but I will do my best.  If you can't understand my instructions, try this link, or google how to tie a bowline (my knot looks a little bit different, but its the same knot, just on a different side). 


1. First, take about 11 inches to make a loop.  Make the loop at the 11 inch mark.

2. Take the bunny (end of the cord) up through the hole.

3. Go around the tree (rest of the cord).

4. And back into the hole.  Tighten.

Move on to the next step!

Step 3: Sections

     Decide how many sections you want in the final product.  I went and took some informal measurements around some random good-sized trees, and decided that about 5 ft was a good length.  I also arbitrarily decided that i wanted around 7 inches between every knot, to give me enough options when hanging the hammock.  With that in mind, make a loop with the middle of it at 13 inches from the previous knot (anchor knot for the first sections).  By the way, I chose the figure eight knot because it is a very sturdy knot that won't pull loose, and is usually easy to untie if needed, even if it has been pulled tight and stressed.

Double Figure Eight Knot on a Bight:

1. Take the loop you just made (at 13 inches), and start  with a loop like you were tying an overhand knot.

2. Instead of crossing the lines once, as in the overhand knot, we need to cross them twice, so continue taking the end around another half rotation.

3. Pass the free end(s) through the loop to complete the knot.  You'll notice that this knot looks like an eight (8) that has the cord going through both loops.  Hence the name...For a more detailed guide, check this link, or again, google it (the procedure is the same, but with two strands).

4. Repeat until desired number of sections is attained.

     For the last section, trim off the excess and fuse it close to the knot.  Another suggestion is to tie a half-hitch as a closing knot, and fuse the end near that.

Step 4: Test

     Go out into the beautiful outdoors, hook up your hammock (a load bearing carabiner and an anchor cord on either side) and hang out.  You can also use this to hook up your hammock practically anywhere.  On the Eagle's Nest Outfitters website, there is a place for users of the hammock to submit their own pictures.  I've seen anywhere from under waterfalls to under bridges, and even wackier ones.  Have fun and be adventurous!

     To attach the hammock, run the cord around the tree, and pass the bowline end of the cord through the last double figure eight knot.  Attach the end of the hammock to the hammock anchor cord to achieve the desired height off the ground.


PS. This is being entered in the Paracord contest which is on-going, vote me up!

Paracord Contest

Participated in the
Paracord Contest