Don’t Get Caught Without Paracord

This incredibly versatile braided cord was first used in parachutes in World War II (hence the name). Once in the field, paratroopers found that this cord was incredibly useful for everything. Astronauts have even used it to repair the Hubble telescope. Never be without a reel of this stuff somewhere nearby. You can use the cord as bootlaces, to ensure it’s always right there when you need it, or weave a bad-ass bracelet or belt that just happens to unravel into a length of this nylon “multi-tool”.

Bow Drill

Making a bow drill to start a fire? Paracord is a great choice for the string on that bow. Twist two pieces together for an unbreakable mini-rope with loads of traction on the fire drill.


Wrapping cord around a stick allows you to easily tighten or loosen a tourniquet to avoid damaging healthy tissue.


Weave a sling and take down prey – David & Goliath style! Yes, it’s strong enough. You’d be surprised.

Dental Floss

Pull off the outer covering of your paracord—it’s woven from many smaller filaments. These fine but sturdy threads serve as excellent dental floss. Not so worried about hygiene? They also make great fishing line or even crude sutures.

Bore Snake

Braid to the right thickness and use to clean your gun.

Emergency Knife

Just about any soft-to-medium- consistency food can be sliced with paracord. In case you forgot the cheese knife or have to slice a birthday cake..

Survival Bracelet

Get in the habit of wearing a woven paracord bracelet at all times. It goes with everything and means you’re never without 20 or so lifesaving feet of rope.


Lace your boots with paracord, and you’ll never be without this essential item.


Not E-bola, but a-bola. Weave paracord around lead weights, large ball bearings, or even some nice round rocks. Braid a handle and you’ve got a throwing weapon that can take down a rabbit for dinner—or a pesky intruder.
These tips and many more survival tips are in MacWelch’s books: Prepare For Anything – the Hunting & Gathering Survival Manual – and How To Survive Anything

Follow him on Twitter @timmacwelch

And check out more of MacWelch’s outdoor skills and survival articles in Outdoor Life Magazine.

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