Boating Basics Online is reader-supported. When you buy via our links, we may earn a commission at no cost to you. Learn more

How to Tie the Anchor Bend Knot? – A Knot Tying Guide

Written by J. Harvey / Fact checked by S. Numbers

how to tie the anchor bend knot

A reliable knot is important in boating; one that is strong and holds well against high tension and a lot of movement is ideal. The Anchor bend knot, also called the anchor hitch or fisherman’s bend, can meet those critical conditions, making it the best knot to tie an anchor.

Today we’ll go over how to tie the anchor bend knot so you can use it yourself. We will cover the steps as well as variations to the procedure.

Keep reading to learn more.

What to Prepare

  • Anchor (or any object to tie to)
  • Rope (a strong material is ideal when tying rope to anchor)

Step-by-Step Guide for Tying the Anchor Hitch


  1. Bring the end of your line through the ring or chain link; take it through the same ring or link for a second time. You will end up having wrapped around the ring or link twice.
  2. Take the working end of your line over the standing line, then bring the end through the loop you just made, where the link is also attached. Pull on both ends to tighten.
  3. Pull the working end over the standing line once more, then bring it under the standing end and through the loop you just made. Pull to tighten. This hitch will secure the knot.

Variation: Double Anchor Bend


  1. Repeat step 1 of the standard knot where you wrap the rope around the ring/shackle twice.
  2. Wrap the working end of your rope one more time, bringing your total to three. This will make the knot more secure. You can add more loops if you want.
  3. Continue to tie as directed in the standard way bringing the working end through the loops. Add the standard hitch at the end to complete the regular version of the knot.
  4. You can add more hitches for further security. Take the end over the standing section then bring it under and through the loop. Pull on both ends and tighten.

Frequently Asked Questions


What are the things to consider before tying the anchor bend knot?

The anchor bend is a strong and reliable knot for attaching items long-term. Variations such as the double anchor knot can be used to further strengthen or secure it. It holds well regardless of rope material so you only have to worry about whether your line is one well-suited to use as anchor rode.

One important consideration is that while the anchor bend is easy to tie, it is extremely difficult to undo once tightened under tension. This means you shouldn’t expect to be able to untie it easily after using it as an anchor line.

Furthermore, because of their elastic and sturdy properties, anchor ropes from modern fibers are easily jammed. As a result, be careful when tightening the knot with it.

Why use the anchor bend knot?

The anchor hitch is quick and easy to tie making it an excellent choice for attaching a rope to a ring or similar termination such as for an anchor.

While you can use a bowline knot for anchors as well, it is not as reliable as the anchor bend because shaking can cause it to unravel.

Unlike the bowline, the anchor bend is strong even against shaking and while under tension. This is why anchor bend knot uses include utility by climbers for their equipment such as carabiners.

How strong is an anchor bend knot?

This is a very strong knot, otherwise, it wouldn’t be reliable enough to be used to attach an anchor to boat. To illustrate how strong it is, we can use a comparison with one of the most popular knots, the bowline.

When considering anchor hitch vs bowline, the standard knot for anchor rope is 10% stronger than the bowline which is regarded as the king of knots by many.

How is knot strength determined?

Any rope tied into a knot loses some of its strength; its ability to hold up against a certain amount of force is diminished. The strength of a knot is determined by looking at this loss of strength; those with a lower rate of loss are stronger.

The bowline is a versatile knot but is also very strong with just a 35% strength loss making it a good choice to tie a rope to an anchor chain if not for its getting undone due to shaking. The anchor bend is even better for such use with a 25% strength loss.


Now you know how to tie the anchor bend knot. It is a very helpful knot to know considering its reliability so be sure to take the time to practice until you can pull it off even with your eyes closed. There are many other useful knots for sailing so give those a look as well.

Do you know how to tie an anchor to a boat using any other ways? Tell us all about them in the comments section below. We’ll be waiting to hear from you.

Remember to boat safely.

4.5/5 - (2 votes)