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I know a lot of folks that retire their old throws to be bow and stern lines. Anyone have a strong opinion on using a larger bag or a bigger diam rope for this purpose? Anyone find the sweet spot for the length while running everything from gc to desert trips?
 

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Yah man! Handling the bow line is one of the most frequent activities so this is a good question.

Over the years I've grown fond of 1/2" nylon braid, which is supple, easy to handle and not bulky. Length is always an issue. I used to carry long - - 100' - - thinking about those distant pinion or junipers I'd have to reach, but realized 80% of the time I only needed 75' or even 50'. Go with what is most frequent, i.e., if you carry 100' of line, but only need it 1 out of 100 times you are tying off, you are burdened with a lot of extra line "the rest of the time." Sand stakes really fill in the gap. Buena suerte!

Oh, forgot to mention, a 1/2" nylon braid is more than enough to hold the boat to shore. Once again, hauling a big, thick, massive 3/4" or something like that line just to keep your boat from floating away overnight seems a little excessive IMO. Think small. Travel light. Leave no trace. Enough can be enough, vs. enough is never enough.
 

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Mine is 50 ft. There are times when I wish I had 75 ft., but those times are few and far between. I have a longer rope in my pin kit, and I could use that in a pinch if I really needed to. So far, I haven't needed it. I think mine is 1/2 inch.
 

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50 ft bowline. Lighter.
- - -
100+ ft stern line, perhaps that can be part of a Z set-up. Heavier.
In a bag drawstring closure. Locking 'biner attached and easily moveable.

Don't beat me up. Just a thought.


This has a weakness in that a rescue rope should never be stepped on.
Appoint the cooler nazi to facilitate punishment for stepping on any rope. Someone who cares.
 

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Jared
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I retired a kayaker throw bag for the duty, no troubles yet. Sometimes I'd like flat webbing bowline with a cam buckle rigged in there somehow to draw up/ release the line easier. My knots are fine, I just think easily adjustable would be nice. :D
 
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I like a 40' bow line. I always have a sand stake. If I need more I use a throw bag or tie to the guy that spends 15min coiling his 100' line. If there is no where to drive the sand stake I lay it on its side and pile rocks like a dead man. 1/2 inch is plenty strong. Another alternative is to get extra tubular webbing and use that. If you break a 4000lb test link you have bigger problems.
 

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I use 75' of 3/8" rope. I attach it with a locking biner so I can run it up on the bow during the day, then move it to the stern once at camp to make unloading and reloading gear easier. I deploy it out of a rope bag, (rope bag goes with me to the anchor) so I only have to pull out and restuff the working length needed and not the full 75'.
 

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I retired a kayaker throw bag for the duty, no troubles yet. Sometimes I'd like flat webbing bowline with a cam buckle rigged in there somehow to draw up/ release the line easier. My knots are fine, I just think easily adjustable would be nice. :D
Just a thought, but you could make an adjustable bowline while still using rope by adding a prusik clipped in to the raft. You could then draw up or let out rope as the river level changes.

Or just retie the bowline. LOL
 

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It cracks me up to see bags deployed backwards. So many times I see 75 ' bags attached to the boat so the guy has to pull and restuff the whole thing for a ten foot tie off.

Obviously the free end should be tied to the boat and the bag goes to shore.

The prussic trick or even a cam strap between the boat and a knot in the line works great for quick adjustments.

Do NOT tie off your boat with a bowline knot. They hold great if under steady tension, but if the current is bouncing on the knot, the same features that allow it to be untied after big pressures, can allow it to work free over time. My friend had to run across a line of boats (including the ranger's) to grab his fully rigged raft as the bowline worked loose at the boundary creek put it. It had been tied up over night like that and only happened to work free while he watched.
 

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It cracks me up to see bags deployed backwards. So many times I see 75 ' bags attached to the boat so the guy has to pull and restuff the whole thing for a ten foot tie off.

Obviously the free end should be tied to the boat and the bag goes to shore.

The prussic trick or even a cam strap between the boat and a knot in the line works great for quick adjustments.

Do NOT tie off your boat with a bowline knot. They hold great if under steady tension, but if the current is bouncing on the knot, the same features that allow it to be untied after big pressures, can allow it to work free over time. My friend had to run across a line of boats (including the ranger's) to grab his fully rigged raft as the bowline worked loose at the boundary creek put it. It had been tied up over night like that and only happened to work free while he watched.
I have a friend who keeps the bag attached to the boat because people keep losing the bags when they tie up the boats. Mine stays at the boat also. It takes about 1-2 minutes to reel in, loosely coil up a 50 ft. line and shove it in a bowline bag. Not a problem for me. I use a tautline hitch to tie up my boat. Super easy to adjust the length of the line right there at the sand stake or other tie off point, and the knot doesn't work loose when not under tension.
 

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Do NOT tie off your boat with a bowline knot. They hold great if under steady tension, but if the current is bouncing on the knot, the same features that allow it to be untied after big pressures, can allow it to work free over time. My friend had to run across a line of boats (including the ranger's) to grab his fully rigged raft as the bowline worked loose at the boundary creek put it. It had been tied up over night like that and only happened to work free while he watched.
Double Figure 8 Loop

The attachment loops can be made larger and could connect to two points on a raft.

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