5 Types of Boating Knots

Boating on the Indian River Lagoon is a great way to spend the day. You can take part in several different activities such as swimming, fishing, and water sports while exploring the most biodiverse estuary in North America. You can also stop off at one of the 137 spoil islands for lunch or to view more of the exotic animals that exist in the lagoon. No matter how you plan on spending your day out on the water, it is always a good idea to know how to tie up your boat. These are five of the most common and most usable knots to use when tying up your boat.


One of the most useful knots to use to tie up your boat is the bowline. This knot creates a loop at the end of the rope allowing it to easily tie off the boat on anything sturdy. A knot that is quite easy to tie and untie when needed, this particular knot is reliable, strong, and stable. Given that you can easily toss the line over pretty much anything to keep the boat in place when it is not occupied, the bowline knot is one of the most popular types of knots for boaters.

Cleat Hitch

If you are looking to tie a boat to the cleat of a static dock, floating dock, or a boat lift, the cleat hitch is one of the most commonly used knots. Mainly used for docks where the boat could easily be jarred loose if other knots are used, the cleat hitch is relatively easy to tie and untie and has the strength to hold the boat securely to the dock. The knot is pretty easily recognizable as it makes a figure eight on the cleat which helps it to keep the boat steady as it is tied up.

Anchor Bend

If you are looking to tie the boat to an anchor, an anchor bend is the knot that should be used. This knot, which creates a double tie to the anchor for extra strength, will safely secure the boat to the anchor. This specific knot will also give you enough rope with the free end that you will be able to tie an additional knot to ensure that the anchor is well secured and is not lost.

Clove Hitch

One of the most common knots to tie a boat to a dock post for temporary mooring is the clove hitch. Like several others on this list, it is a knot that is very easy to tie and very easy to untie making it ideal for a binding knot. The biggest advantage to using a clove knot is that it continuously keeps pressure on whatever it is tied to. This is necessary to keep the knot from slipping and potentially causing the boat to drift away. It is also helpful if you are tying the boat to any objects that rotate.

Figure Eight Knot

If you are looking for a way to tie a boat with a strong knot that will ensure the boat will remain still when needed, a figure eight knot might be the best solution. One of the strongest knots that you can tie, the figure eight knot will provide a firm, non-slip loop at the end. In fact, the strength of the figure eight knot allows it to be used by other activities rather than just for boating. Rock climbers often use the knot to hold their climbing gear in place to ensure it doesn’t fall as they climb. If you are looking to tightly secure your boat to any mooring, this is a great knot to do so.

There are several reasons that you may need to tie up a boat. If this is the case, you will need to know what kind of knot to use to ensure that your boat is properly tied up. The bowline, cleat hitch, anchor bend, clove hitch, and figure eight knot are five of the most common types of knots that are used to tie up a boat. If you enjoy boating and want a large selection of boats to take out at your leisure, or are simply not ready to purchase your own boat, consider joining 321 Boat Club.