Thursday, September 28, 2017

The 10 Minute Cordage Organizer - Because a knotted ball of rope is the worst.

For rigging up tarps and other backpacking needs I'll often turn to masonry line as my cordage of choice. Compared to say, paracord, it's lower cost, far more compact, and has a reasonable pound-test rating. Best of all, it's easy to get in high-vis colors, which makes it a bit safer around the campsite.

For my last trip I decided to bring 6 pre-cut 12 foot lengths of cord with me. I figured each chunk could be deployed as a guyline when setting up my shelter.

While this was a fine plan and all, I was almost guaranteed that by the time I got to the campsite the 6 cords would be in hopelessly tangled mess. Clearly there's some sort of corollary to Murphy's law that involves cordage and its necessity to tangle and knot.

To get ahead of this problem, I decided to create a little spool to hold the lengths of cord. All it took was a DSW Shopper's card, an expired library card, a sharpie, a craft knife and about 10 minutes of time:

Ultimately, I didn't end up sleeping under a tarp, so I never deployed the cordage. But, I did confirm that it stayed neatly bundled the entire trip (take that Murphy!). Next trip I think I'll cut down on the length of each segment (to perhaps 6'), but I'm keeping the card organizer the same. It's definitely worth spending a few minutes up front to avoid a cussing session in the woods.

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