A while back, I received an email from a company about possibly writing a gear review on one of their products, as I do from many companies. The products for this company consisted of colorful bracelets and key chains. Now, I would be lying if I didn’t first relate these products to friendship bracelets in my head and thought, “this will be a stretch to do a hiking gear review on friendship bracelets!” I couldn’t have been more wrong.
Once I was able to dive into the details of the email and explore their website more closely, it was apparent to me that Cobrabraid made quality survival gear that was perfect for all sorts of outdoorsmen, including those in the hiking community. Cobrabraid makes different types of bracelets and key chains, all constructed out of true 550 paracord (meaning it can withstand a tensile load of 550+ pounds). Apparently, these bracelets were developed overseas by our military personnel as handy survival tools when needed. By having one of these things on your wrist, you’re effortlessly carrying around a hefty length of useful paracord that, when unraveled, could be used for a multitude of things such as a shelter or fishing line. Cobrabraid hasn’t just stopped at bracelets and key chains either. They are also selling dog collars, belts and kits to make your own products. One of the most important things to add is that all their products are 100% made in the USA!
To receive my bracelet, I needed to give them a size measurement. Getting your wrist size is very easy and Cobrabraid gives you easy to follow instructions so that they can ship you the perfect size. Instructions can be found here. One 8” bracelet yields approximately 7-8 feet of 550 paracord which could be a lifesaver if you find yourself in a survival situation on the trail.
When I received my bracelet, I tried it on and it fit nicely around my wrist. It was a little stiff at first and figured that was due to it being right off the production line. I bent it around a little, back and forth, and it loosened right up. The clasp on this particular bracelet was Velcro, which was great because it allows you to make it as tight or as loose as you’d like. I was also particularly fond of the color theme they sent me, being camouflage. I grew up in a military family so camo was a favorite in my household for many articles of clothing :).
Cobrabraid also sent me a great key chain in the same color scheme as the bracelet. It is a bit shorter, so yields less 550 paracord than the bracelet, but has a great little carabiner on the end of it. Hikers love carabiners! This particular carabiner found a perfect home on the a loop on my hiking pack.
It was tough to know if this bracelet would go unnoticed on my wrist or not while on the trial. I actually don’t hike with my wrist watch. This is because the constant movement of my arm lets my watch bang on my wrist, causing discomfort. The only way to know for sure if this bracelet would work for me was to bring it on a hike. Recently, my office had Wellness Week and I planned a trip to Mount Pawtuckaway – North for everyone. I made sure to bring my Cobrabraid bracelet along to wear (as well as the key chain on my pack). It was very light weight compared to my watch and I barely even noticed I had it on…so it passed the test.
I really think this is a great product and one that no one should pass up when choosing survival kit gear. I certainly won’t be found on the trail without it moving forward. It helps you save some room (and weight) in your pack by spreading out your gear to other parts of your body, which is definitely an attractive concept to most “light” hikers. Also, as I mentioned before, it is a USA based company and all products are made with the highest quality in mind.
Cobrabraid was very nice and actually sent me two products to giveaway to some interested readers. I have a bracelet and carabiner key chain (blue and black in color). I will be giving these away on Live Free and Hike’s Facebook fan page. All you have to do is comment on the posting for this article and why you’d like this product for your survival kit and you could win one. You have until Wednesday, August 8th to do comment. I’ll draw two random comments on August 9th and announce them on Facebook, so please leave a comment and check back after that date!