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Need-to-Know Climbing Knots: Euro Death Knot

If you’re going to be a rock climber, you don’t necessarily need to know how to tie your shoes (as long as you wear Velcro slippers), but there are seven essential knots you’ll want to know. There are dozens of knots that might be worth learning as a climber, but for the most part, you can get up and down any climb on Earth with just these basic, essential knots—The Figure-8 Retraced, Girth Hitch, Clove Hitch, Munter Hitch, Double Fisherman’s, Prusik and Euro Death Knot.

Know them, learn them, and practice them until you can tie them in your sleep.

Euro Death Knot

What is it: A knot used for joining two climbing ropes together for a rappel. The Offset Water Knot, otherwise known to climbers by the misleading (and inaccurate) name of “Euro Death Knot” (EDK), is the best knot for joining two ropes together for a rappel.

Why it’s cool: Easy to tie. Easy to untie. Less likely to get hung up on rock features during rappels.

Red Flags/Rules: Leave at least 8 to 12 inches of tail.

How to Tie it

  • Hold both rope ends next to each other and tie an overhand knot in them as if they were a single line.


Learn How to Tie the 6 Other Essential Knots

Figure-8 Retraced

Girth Hitch

Clove Hitch

Munter Hitch

Double Fisherman’s



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