Solving knotty issues

It's surprising how many boat owners struggle when it's time to tie boat ropes to docks, fasten loose items or secure an anchor to a drop line.

I can't tell you how many times I've watched someone struggle to secure his boat to a dock with a rope, only to panic and throw a few wraps around something and hope they held. Do that on a windy day, and you're flirting with a potential problem.

Well, Yamaha Marine Group has outlined details of how to tie basic knots that will handle knotty situations that most bass anglers face routinely.

Here's how Yamaha experts describe how to tether your boat and accessories without concern of them coming untied:

Bowline: If you need a loop at the end of a line that will not slip or fail, the bowline knot does the job. In fact, rescue crews often use a bowline to lift a victim when other methods aren't feasible.

That's how good the bowline knot can be when tied properly.

Holding the end of the line close to you, make an overhand loop, and push the end of the line through the loop.

Then, move the loose end around behind the main rope line and put the loose end down through the loop. Next, pull the loose end as tight as you can.

Cleat Hitch: Before you tie up to the dock, create a loop in the rope and push the loop through the cleat on your boat, hook the loop over the ends of the cleat, and tug the line to make sure it's snug.

To secure your boat to a dock cleat, wrap the loose end of the line once around the cleat; make a figure eight around each ear of the cleat. Tuck the running end under the part of the figure eight at the opposite side of where you began. Pull the loose end tight.

Anchor Bend: This knot is commonly used to tie a line to a buoy or an anchor ring. Loop the loose end of the line through the ring twice, forming two lightly wrapped loops. Wrap the loose end around the rest of the rope then push the end of the rope through both loops.

To finish, tie a simple half hitch with the loose end around the rope and pull it tight.

Clove Hitch: To tie quickly to a post, piling or railing, wrap a lengthy loose end of the rope around the post then and back over the main line and wrap the loose portion around the post again. Finish by threading the end of the rope under the final wrap of line (between the post and line), and pull both ends of the line tightly.

Pretty simple, eh? You bet, especially if you spend a little time practicing these knots before confronted with a hurry-up situation on the water. It will keep the boat safe and prevent those embarrassing moments around the dock.

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