Gear Review: Cobrabraids

One of the products you’ve probably noticed around in the last couple of years are the various offerings of parachute cord that come in the form of keychains, bracelets, and whatnot.

Well, many months ago I agreed to test and review Cobrabraids brand parachute cords through the Outdoor Blogger Network. The unusual nature of this review though was that it wasn’t a product we would rush out and put to the test, it was a product that would be tested when the time was right. In other words, when a situation arose that required us to unravel and essentially destroy the product for a greater purpose.

My Cobrabraid collection... still unused.
My Cobrabraid collection… still unused.
Cobrabraids ready for action...
Cobrabraids ready for action… (Note: I did have to replace the original carabiner on the keychain since it broke very early on.)

The Dilemma…

The problem is that in spite of carrying one on my pack, one in my First Aid kit, and one on my keychain since receiving them, I have yet to need to unbraid any of them and use them as a rope. For months and months these have joined us on our adventures… and nothing. On the one hand, I guess that means our travels have gone smoothly, on the other, I consider these great to have on hand and I’d kind of like to use them.

Missed opportunities?

So thinking back on all of our travels, what scenarios might I have used the Cobrabraids?

  • Dog run: As you know, we travel with The Disapproving Beagle. When we’re at camp we set up a long line for him to roam back and forth. The line is part of our standard gear but it has been left behind in the past. If that problem had popped up in the time I’ve been carrying Cobrabraids, I could have used it as a stand-in.
  • Dog leash: On a recent visit to Skidaway Island, I aided in the retrieval of an escaped dog. Her leash was broken and in the ensuing chaos, I completely forgot about the Cobrabraid but it would have been the perfect solution to leashing and handling the crazed dog… instead of struggling to handle her with the broken one she had on.
  • Remember those insane winds at Death Valley I told you about? The Cobrabraids would have made very sturdy guy lines if I’d had them on that trip.
  • Backpack lashing: There have been times when I’ve needed to shift how I carry my tripod and first aid kit which I have lashed to the outside of my camera pack. I’ve always managed to rearrange without using Cobrabraids but they would most certainly come in handy should one of my webbings fail or be inadequate in some way.
  • The tent: I could easily see these being useful as extra guy lines or to hang lanterns.
  • Geocache repairs: Broken lid hinge or frayed rope on a hanging cache. Break out your Cobrabraid and be a geocaching hero.
  • First aid: Need to bind a splint or something of that nature? Cobrabraid would do the trick. Seems like a good tool to have in your kit since it has so many potential uses.
This little guy has to be on a leash when we’re traveling. The Cobrabraid is a great backup should we need it. (Fortunately you can’t leash this beagle’s enthusiasm for a great game of fetch.)

More to come…

Basically I think it’s a great idea to have a conveniently stowed rope with you on your adventures and even in daily life. I love the idea and I will continue to carry my Cobrabraids. And I will certainly report back when I’ve had the pleasure of unraveling one or all of them… which will hopefully result in some edge-of-the-seat tale I can share as a result!

In the meantime, have you used one of these yourself or have any other ideas to add to the list?

Required Disclaimer:

Just in case it wasn’t obvious, Val in Real Life received the Cobrabraids free of charge to test and review. The opinions expressed above are her independent thoughts and experiences.

And now for your moment of green…

Cobrabraids would be great on the water too. There are all sorts of uses in boating I’m sure.