When it comes to outdoor survival scenarios, paracord is the duct tape of ropes. These individual cords can be used in hunting, fishing, meal preparation, and treating injuries. Unlike duct tape, you can incorporate paracord into everyday items, giving you instant access anytime and anywhere.
Snares and Bows
A few feet of paracord can be enough to create a few snares to trap small game. Peel-off the outer layer of a paracord rope, and you’ll see several thin strands of yarn. You can use these yarns to set up makeshift rabbit snares or leg snares. If you’re aiming for larger prey, you might need to use the whole paracord. Store-bought 550 paracords can stand up to 550 lbs of tension, which should be enough to hold prey below 100 pounds. Snares might not be as effective for more large prey or for animals that can chew through the rope. However, you can be more direct by making a bow out of bamboo, willow, or ash and using paracord as the bowstring. Carefully crafted paracord bows can have draw weights of 60lbs or more — enough to bring down whitetail deer or similar prey.
Lines and Nets
A thorny twig can efficiently serve as the hook for your paracord fishing line. The insides of a paracord are barely visible underwater, and they have enough strength to reel in 10-15lbs fish. You can also weave the inside strands of paracord into nets that have enough power to trap and hold lots of fish at a time. Fifteen feet of paracord should be enough to provide enough strands for a suitable net.
Bow Drills and Smoking Racks
Starting a fire is one of the essential skills in survival. Fashion a fire drill/bow drill with paracord and pieces of wood, and you can start fires with relative ease. Now that you have your fire, you can start smoking extra pieces of meat or fish to preserve them. You can do this by making a smoking rack for meat or just suspending fish with lines.
Splints, Tourniquets, and Sutures
While not exactly the best choice for emergencies, you can use paracord if first aid or rescue kits are not available. You can easily use paracord to fashion makeshift slings, splints, and tourniquets. You can even use the inside strands of paracord to suture wounds during critical conditions. Immobile individuals can be transported with a paracord stretcher, but that would require at least 50 feet of paracord.
Paracord in Everyday Items
Carrying hundreds of feet of paracord at all times seems impractical, but not if you incorporate them into clothing or accessories. A single woven belt can hold 50 feet of paracord. Paracord bracelets will usually have a ratio of 10 feet for every inch — so wearing a couple of bracelets will give you access to 15-20 feet of paracord at all times.
You’ll never know when you’ll be flung into a survival situation. Learn essential survival skills and never be without a rope by wearing 2-3 paracord bracelets.