Everyone has seen a traditional tree swing. It is a classic piece of Americana. In your yard, it is one of the most recognizable elements of growing up in the states.
Most of us have nostalgic memories of a tree swing. It might be an old rope swing, a tire swing, or even a swinging horse. Regardless of what your idea of a tree swing is, there are some logistics to hanging one that you weren’t worried about when you were just a tyke swinging on one.
Rope Can Damage Trees
The traditional technique for hanging a tree swing is to throw a rope over the branch, tie a knot, and pull it tight. There are some problems with this technique, as time tested as it might be.
If your tree branch isn’t heavy enough, the friction of swinging can weaken the branch enough that it can snap. One of the only things worse than falling out of a swing on your bottom is having a branch fall on your head after you do.
Even if the branch is heavy, rope can severely damage the branch. A child (or an adult) swinging full force turns a loosely wrapped rope into a chainsaw. While this may not wear all the way through the branch in downward force, the rope traveling, especially when wrapped all the way around the branch, can strip the bark.
Once the bark is removed all the way around a branch, it will begin to die. This branch won’t fall immediately, but it will die off slowly, leading to a surprise branch failure somewhere down the road.
This can be especially problematic in temporary rigs. If you are just putting your swing up while you are camping for a weekend, you want to maintain Leave No Trace principles. Damaging the branches of the trees at your campsite for your temporary convenience is the opposite if Leave No Trace.
Trees Can Damage Rope
The probably obvious corollary to the rope creating friction and damaging tree branches? That same friction is creating wear and tear on the rope at the same time. Think about how coarse the bark of a hickory tree is, and you can imagine it probably impacts the structural integrity of the rope that is hanging your swing.
Weakening a rope that will be holding up your entire body weight has obvious drawbacks, especially if you are mounting a hammock to sleep in, or if your swing is out over a creek. Often this damage can be hidden, especially on braided or natural line. This can lead to catastrophic failure,which is aptly named.
Swing Ties are a Safer Alternative
Swing Tie mounting straps are substantially safer, for you and the tree. The complications of mounting are eliminated by an easy over and through process.
You just throw the strap over the branch, and pull the smaller loop through the bigger loop. If you need it to be shorter, you can wrap it around a few times before passing it through.
Swing tie Straps are wide, so they don’t rub bark off and damage the tree. The material is super durable, so it can take being left out in the elements, without breaking down.
The buckles are stainless steel,so it won’t rust and weaken from sun and rain.
All this combined means you can use a Swing Tie one your tree in the front yard to anchor your kid’s rope swing, or you can take it on your next family camping trip to mount your hammock.
To conclude, A Swing Tie is the safest way to hang a swing from any tree, both for you, and for the tree!