Climbing magazine answers the age-old question of which knot is best used for joining two ropes in a double-rope rappel by showing how to tie the flat overhand, the knot recommended by the AMGA. We also show the triple barrel knot, which can be tied in the end of both ropes to keep you from rappelling off the rope.


Previous Comments

in my days, the preferred knot for tying 2 ropes of unequal diameter was the double sheep bend. I do not believe it was in the last issue of Freedom of the Hills. Has this knot fallen from favor. It seemed to work well ropes of different diameter, and what i liked most about it was that it was never hard to untie after severe weighting, like the double grapevine?

daryl - 02/23/2013 3:52:28

Mike- You can still use a flat overhand knot to joint the ropes. You could also use a Reepschnur rappel by tying a figure-8 on a bight on the tagline side of the rappel anchor and clipping it to the single rope as shown here if you are at all concerned about the overhand knot rolling through the anchors:

Drew R - 02/02/2013 5:44:59

I used to join ropes with a grapevine knot. But I can see the advantage of the overhand. The knots she did at the rope ends are what I call grapevines.

Jim Pyacek - 12/12/2012 3:49:55

Great video. I have different personal preferences for both knots, but the principles that are taught in this video are sound: use a tried-and-true knot to join the ropes, and always tie a good knot in the bottom end of each rope.

Paul Crowder - 12/07/2012 6:17:17

What knot is recommended for ropes of different diameter? I usually bring a 9mm as an extra rope for rappel.

Mike Cook - 12/06/2012 7:12:19