ends of a sack are often inaccessible when we want to tie it closed.
The top may be inaccessible because the bag is too full, requiring a
tight grip to keep it closed throughout the tying process, and leaving
free only a small floppy remnant of the bag opening that is difficult
to work with. The bag may be heavy or large, denying access to
its bottom end. In the full range of tying conditions it is
inconvenient to pre-form the knot before putting it on the neck of the
bag, or to cast loops or hitchs over either end of the bag during the
tying process. I prefer a single sack-tying procedure that is
convenient for all common circumstances. The knot shown to the left and
in the photographs below meets that requirement extremely well.
tied around sacking material, the knot pictured here binds almost as well as
the constrictor knot and is easy to tie and remember. It is shown in the Ashley Book of
Knots (ABOK) as number
1244. ABOK 1244 is pictured in ABOK as the mirror image of the knot shown here.
Ashley calles this knot "the bag knot". The way shown here to tie the knot is easier for right-handed people
than as shown in ABOK, at least when tying it as a sack-closing knot. (This
and other knots in ABOK lead me to suspect that Ashley was
I tried all of the binding knots in ABOK that seemed suitable as
sack-closers. This one seems to present the best combination of ease of
tying and security. Although secure enough for almost all sack-closing
applications, it is is slightly less secure than the constrictor
The bag knot is also an excellent hitch, shown in ABOK as a hitch with number 1674.
This knot closely related to the picket-line hitch, ABOK 1676, and its
mirror image, the ground-line hitch, ABOK 1680.
The photographs below shows a procedure by which a right handed
person could tie the bag knot. The procedure is suitable for fast blind tying. The photographs are taken from the
perspective of a person closing a sack while bending over it. The
top of the sack comes out of the bottom of the left hand. The
weight of the sack keeps the neck of the sack
taut for easy tying.
The one and only tuck in the procedure pictured below -- the last
operation before tightening -- may be made as a loop for easy untying,
as shown in the photographs and in the drawing.