You can’t have too much paracord or duct tape, IMHO, and this belt made of paracord combines practicality with good looks.
by Leon Pantenburg
When I’m looking at a potential survival tool, one aspect that ranks right up there with reliability is convenience.
How convenient will it be to take along or include that product? If it isn’t easy to carry or pack, it will get left at the trailhead some day, or you won’t have it along when that tool is needed. I have worn a forged firestriker belt buckle daily for going on 11 years. The buckle has been used to make a lot of fires, but the security blanket aspect can’t be underestimated. I also have integrated survival tools into my wardrobe.
Other must-have items include duct tape and paracord. Duct tape is used for everything. For the uninformed, paracord or parachute line is a nylon cord with a tensile strength of about 550 pounds (hence the term 550 cord). I carry a minimum of 50 feet in any of my survival kits, and also use it for everything.
Subsequently, I look for items that work well for everyday carry, and this paracord belt from RidgeRunner is one of those items. What is more convenient than a belt?
The idea of a paracord belt was a natural for inclusion in my everyday carry gear, so I ordered one from Ridge Runner Belts. I had already tried out the paracord rifle sling, and was impressed with the quality workmanship. (Check out the video review.)
Bill Watson, owner of Ridge Runner Belts, makes all the products himself in his shop in Reedsville, West Virginia. His guarantee is impressive.
Bill writes on his website: “If you ever have a problem with your belt or rifle sling caused by normal usage, I will repair or replace it free of charge. Also, if you ever have to use the paracord in your belt or rifle sling in an emergency situation, send me the buckle, or sling hardware, tell me your story and I will make a new belt or sling for you.“
Depending on your waist size, each belt has about 50-70 feet of paracord in it. The width is standard 1-1/4 inches, and the belt fits nicely in the loops of most of my pants.
The belt arrived a few days after I ordered it, and right out of the box, it was impressive. The weave is tight, and the coils are uniform and the product is attractive. It doesn’t look “tactical” IMO, but rather, is the style us outdoorsy types would like. Mine was made of black paracord, so, as is my habit when testing some product, I started using it every day.
In appearance, the belt comes with a nice-looking buckle, and it is a cinch (couldn’t pass up the pun…) to adjust the belt to your waist size. In my job at Central Oregon Community College, I usually dress business casual, with a coat and tie as needed, and the paracord belt blends in nicely with my wardrobe. Bill could also make a belt for that custom belt buckle you have, just contact him first.
My belt is stiff and sturdy enough to carry a holster or large knife sheath on with no trouble.
Consistent with any good piece of convenient survival gear, I forget I have it along, and the belt gets regular use. Now, if you carry a properly-packed survival kit in the backcountry, as you should, you’ll have plenty of paracord for whatever you need. But it sure is nice to know there is a backup of 50-60 feet around your waist.