ESSENTIAL SKILLS

Paracord Survival Belt: An Essential Addition to Your Outdoor Survival Kit

Man wearing paracord belt
Bradley Page
Written by Bradley Page

A paracord survival belt is today’s most important and essential hiking gear for your outdoor and backpacking trips. Short pieces of this cord might fall short during emergency situations like car breakdown. Thus, it’s evident for every adventure lover to carry longer paracords or wear a paracord belt.

Longer paracords don’t allow you to cut short pieces from it, but can also come in handy during life and death situations where you would need to lift someone from a steep slope or cliff. However, you’ll need a longer one as a short 10 ft paracord would just not serve your purpose all the time.

What Makes Paracords the best in their range?

Paracords have truly emerged as a popular and effective tool these days, especially to the ones involved in outdoor and hiking activities. These tools are highly versatile, flexible and can be used for multiple purposes.

Originally, this material was used by the US military for parachutes during World War II. Its strong and robust nature made it perfect for the military use. However, there were other impressive properties too that made it so popular today.

Bulk paracord

Having a high breaking point was also a primary reason because the parachute suspensions had to support the soldiers, his heavy weapons and the other gears as well. The flexibility of this materials included an added stretchability that helped in absorbing the shock, which soldiers would feel after deploying the parachute.

Another major convenience of using Paracord is it’s extraordinarily light weight, which allows the soldiers to carry them easily even after landing. Apart from the parachutes, soldiers also used these cords in strapping their weapons and equipment together from one location to the other.

The strength, robustness, lightweight and flexibility of these cords depend mainly on their construction. These are nothing but nylon strands that has been braided to form a single strand.

Paracord strands

First, two of these braided strands are taken and twisted, then seven such twisted braids are taken and braided together forming a nylon coil, which is again contained in a nylon sheath that is again made of more a dozen nylon strands.

Highlighting the Features of Paracord:

  • Paracords are versatile, robust and light. They are made of nylon strands and originally were used by the US military during World War II.
  • Typically these cords are available as 50 to 100 ft long and come in various colors. However, you can also opt for longer cords for customized purpose.
  • They have tensile strength of approximately 550 pounds.
  • Won’t get affected by mildew or rot.

10 Simple and Emergency Usage of Paracords

Securing Tents: Tent lines often get misplaced and thus, you start looking for an alternative for it. Well, nothing can be a better alternative than these survival cords.

Paracord tent system

Fix your Bra Strap: Not necessarily, but if you are ever stuck with a broken strap in the middle of the wood, then these paracords can amazingly come at your service.

Replace your Worn Out Drawstrings: If you misplaced your drawstrings, don’t worry. You can always use your paracords to manage such situations.

Keep Away from Animals: If you don’t want to attract unwanted attention from bears, then use your paracord to hang your food and other important gears in tree branches.

Drawstring bag

Stay Together: When you are on an adventure trail with your friends or family, you need to stay together. Paracord helps you to stay together, especially in emergency situations.

Paracord Fishing line: Fishing is also made easy with paracords since they become the best alternative for fishing lines.

Paracord Pulley Systems: The paracords’ extensive and robust nature makes them the ideal material for pulley systems. They can help you fetch water from a deep well or help you lift yourself up on a tree for survival.

Paracord Pulley

Emergency Suspenders: These tools are a perfect solution for having a makeshift suspender.

Make Your Own Raft: Use your Paracord to build your own raft for a smooth ride on the river. This can be for fun or to protect yourself from the dangerous animals out there.

A Perfect Item to Beat Your Boredom: Feeling bored? Make cool accessories with your paracord like bracelets with simple knots or braids. Make them a unique piece with some splash of colors.

Why are Paracord Belts Mostly Suggested?

These handy tools are quite easily available in the market and are produced by a lot of companies. Unfortunately, most of these products which were delivered to the civilians were not the ones used by the military. They’re less robust and much inferior in quality.

Paracord on a backpack

So, whenever you are buying one, make sure you check its quality before buying. Since you can create multiple designs and braids with a paracord, you can give it multiple shapes and use it for different purposes. You can make bracelets, key chains, lanyards and wallets with this universal product.

However, one of most useful and out-of-the-box item that you can make is a paracord belt. The best part about this belt is that it makes the best use of this cord and is made available to you in every emergency survival situation. No matter where you are or what you are doing, this belt can always stay with you and serve you in need.

Paracords are available in multiple colors, so you can make your belt just the way you want it to look like. You can opt for a classic brown color or go with a neon range.

Since the belt is very light, you can wear it regularly without putting on any additional weight in your body. Just put it on and forget about it until the time of an emergency.

Paracord Belt

Image credit: instructables.com

Another revolutionary benefit of using this survival belt is that you will never fall short of cords. Bracelets are useful as well, but won’t provide you with much cord, which is just the opposite for survival belts. Belts will come with plenty of length in it and you can use it in varied situations in your daily life.

Use of Paracord during Injuries

With this survival belt on, you can feel safe and stay completely assured that no matter what happens you will always be ready for an emergency situation with the most vital rescue element in hand. Since you will be wearing it, there is no risk of losing it. And as far as usage is concerned, there aren’t one or two, but more than dozen uses of this tool during emergencies.

Paracords can help you with injuries or can also help you transport heavy goods and keep you and your companions together. There are not just one, but a number of medical emergency uses of this cord.

Construct a splint

You can construct a splint with this cord when your companion is injured or suffering from a broken bone. Find some straight branches or something similar. Also find some small sticks to attach to those branches. Now, secure the sticks with the two branches using the cord.

Paracord splint

You can also add some padding to the splint with clothes or any cushioned materials allowing the injured person to reach a safe destination safely for medical attention.

Make a Stretcher

There can also be a situation where you cannot move the injured person at all. You might have to keep him away from walking or putting any stress on his legs. During such situations, a stretcher is what you would require. But how? Well, with survival cords you can also make a stretcher of your own and deal with the emergency.

Just like the splint, making a stretcher will also start with two long branches. The main section of stretcher where the injured person will be laid can be a sturdy cloth or jackets. Make it more stable by attaching small sticks with cords, such that two or four people can easily carry the person at a rapid speed.

Make Stitches or a Tourniquet

When you are outdoor or involved in an adventurous expedition, deep cut and lacerations are not uncommon. Securing such injuries would need stitches; bandages or any other tool would not be enough for the job. You can use these cords for the same purpose.

Paracord tourniquet

Cut the external sheath of the paracord and expose the strands. Now, take a single strand and use it as a thread to stitch the wound. The only thing you would need from your first aid box is a needle.

Almost every first aid kit comes with needles, but if you don’t have one, you can use the paracord to stop the bleeding and look for a bone or similar material that you can use to do the stitches. Some say that paracords can also be used to make a tourniquet that can stop bleeding.

But it has also been noted that these kinds of survival cords are not a great choice for preparing a tourniquet because it might damage the tissues of the affected area and fail to effectively control the bleeding. Hence, these cords are not widely suggested for preparing a tourniquet.

Paracord sling

Using Paracords in Food Searching

Apart from the medical emergencies, these cords can also be used during survival situations where you need to search for food. If your tent is near a stream or any water body then you can use these cords as your fishing lines.

Just take out a long section of the nylon strand from the cord. Makeshift hooks are also quite easy to make and can be curved out from a rock, bone or a piece of wood. You can use any kind of shiny object or materials to make lures.

Now cast a fishing line into the water and connect one end of it with a branch or a fixed surface close by. If you are lucky, then this simple hack can yield you one, two or even more fish for your meal.

Paracord Fishing Line

Take a long section of these cords and attach some weight, so that you can use it to knock down some fruits and eggs from the bird’s nest. Fresh fruits, a little protein and cool coconut water to drink are definitely not bad. A similar cord attached with weight can also be used as a basic weapon to hunt small animals.

With a little more effort, you can also use these cords and make small animal traps. If these simple weapons and traps are designed properly and also placed at a good location, you can easily catch a rabbit or similar animals.

You can use this cord to strung up the fish or animals you’ve already hunted and preserved. This not only maximizes your food supply but also enhances your hunting and fishing abilities. At times, it can also enhance your safety and security.

Never hang your food close to your camping location because the smell of raw food can draw dangerous animals towards your tent. So, it is always suggested to hang your food at a distance from the place you are camping.

Paracord Food Hanger

Secure Your Safety with Paracords

Outdoor adventures come with loads of risk factors. Your safety and security in the wild should be sufficient and you can say that a paracord can help you achieve just that. Spending a night in a dense, dark and wild forest can be really dangerous, especially if you have positioned yourself on ground.

Insects, bears, cougars and other dangerous animals move out at night for hunting and you would obviously don’t wish to stay on the ground right then. Use your paracords and position your tent above the ground and stay safe.

Paracords can also be used for hiking and mountain climbing. Keep yourself attached to an anchor with these survival cords and stay safe from sudden slips. Allowing just one cord to support your weight might seem risky, but you can also enhance its strength by adding multiple cords or braiding them together with several twists and turns.

Paracord for safety in the wilderness

Once you’re up and in a safe position, use your paracord to secure yourself and all your gears with a tree so that your belongings don’t slip or fall when you are resting.  Another option is to create a seat, net or hammock with the cord to lift yourself up from the ground. It cannot protect you from large animals like a bear but can always keep you safe from small insects or ants.

However, you can still make your position a little more safe and secure by using makeshift “tripwire noise alarms”. Fix these alarms on ground with your cord and mark your premises. These may not protect you, but can surely give you a warning and get enough time to climb up a tree or move in a secured location.

If you are near any water body, use your paracord to make a raft, which you can use to for a ride down the stream or at least away from any close dangers.

Some Other Beneficial Uses of Paracords

You can use these to tie your shoe, replacing the worn out pair or tie it around a shoe that is about to collapse and give it some temporary support. You can also use them as your drawstrings on bags.

Paracord shoe lace

Paracords are a great alternative of clothesline and can act as an absolute life saver if you need to dry your wet clothes to keep away from falling sick or catching hypothermia.

You can replace your dog’s old leash and make a new one with these survival cords. Apart from this, you can use it to keep people together, especially kids. Keeping your little champs together is most important, mostly in the dark and no other alternative is better than these paracords in such situations.

Paracords can also be used to strap your equipment together and make a convenient bundle that you can effortlessly carry along with you in long distances. The cord seems more helpful if you are travelling in a snowy region. You can use these cords to make temporary snow shoes with bent branches of trees.

Paracord snow shoes

Final Thoughts

This is one of the most versatile and robust material that has numerous uses. All you need is to stay calm, think, and make the best solution out of these survival cords. If you an adventure lover, you should have no problem falling in love with these multi- purpose tools.

The strongest and the most logical reason for using this material is that it’s part of your every-day-carry. Wear it as bracelets or as a belt, your choice, but it will always work the same whenever there is an emergency. No matter where you are, town or city, ship or plane, home or on the road you can also save yourself when they are with you.

What do you think of paracord belts? Do you think they’re useful for outdoor use? Feel free to let us know in the comments!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Bradley Page
Bradley Page

With several decades of experience as a backpacker and outdoor adventurer, Bradley is an open encyclopedia when it comes to gear, clothes, and other items that matter on the trail. He tested hundreds of shoes, pants, jackets, and backpacks in his long career and is always up to date with the new appearances in the niche. His experience makes him one of the authority figures in backpacking and he can help anyone to get prepared for a great adventure!

  • Shawna Lewis

    Totally agree that paracords are such a useful tool to have with you when you’re camping. I use the Paracord Planet Type III 7 Strand 550 Paracord. It’s a solid cord and I haven’t detected any fraying, even after it has gotten much use from me.

  • Bradley Page

    Paracords are very sturdy and it’s an all around cord for craft, as well as tactical use. It’s also a utility cord and can be used in so many things – in and out of camp. Were you able to make the paracord survival belt Shawna? It’s a great project to make, together with the bracelet and lanyard.

  • Chris Towns

    The RattlerStrap Paracord Survival EDC Belt is what I use and I agree with this article and Shawna’s comment, it’s an invaluable piece of equipment. It’s so nice I have so much cord there to use if I ever happen to need it!

  • Bradley Page

    I’ve made a lot of these paracord projects and I’ve given these to friends and families who are very appreciative. Nowadays, not only is the paracord popular among outdoor lovers – most people who are couch potatoes also love to use this around the house. Even in their workplace. Cool!

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