Knots to Know: Round turn with two half hitches
The round turn with two half hitches is useful for attaching a line under load to a fixed object such as a piling, rail or ring.
Self-tightening under load, the round turn with two half hitches is secure and superior to the alternatives because the round turn reduces the initial strain of the load, making it easier to tie the half hitches. The knot also can be used to attach a line under load to an anchor, hook or other fixed objects aboard a boat.
Step-by-step instructions for tying a round turn with two half hitches
- Start by wrapping the line around the object to which you are tying the knot. Continue in the same direction to make a second loop by circling the object.
- Pass the working end over the standing end. Then pass it back through the loop or space formed between the two ends to make a half hitch.
- Repeat, passing the working end over the standing end and back through the loop or space to make the second half hitch.
- Pull the ends to tighten.
Remember to wrap in the same direction when making the two initial turns around the object and to go over, not under, the standing line both times when tying the two half hitches.
If the final knot resembles a clove hitch tied around the standing, or loaded, part of the line, you’ve done it right.
To untie, compress the knot to loosen the two half hitches. Pull out the working end and unwind the two loops. Note that the load will be increasingly felt as the turns are unwound.
For other useful knots, check out Knots to Know. A new knot is added every month.