I go horseback riding for long hours on back trails. I have a first aid/little survival kit in a Nalgene water bottle and one in a 38 oz steel bottle. Both have loops to attach a carabiner. I want to attach a sort of safety line to me so if my horse spooks and I fall off I don't want my kit going with her.

Hanging the bottle off my body is not reasonable for long rides due to bouncing and movement so I usually clip it to saddle. How can I ensure that the kit stays with me if I fall?

  • Easiest would be a backpack with the items inside; correctly fitted and packed and you shouldn't get much bounce etc. A drinking bladder might solve the problem if you want water on demand
    – bob1
    Commented Apr 5, 2023 at 23:19
  • 1
    SYDWW as I read it you want those two bottles carried on your horse but stay with you when you and the horse part company? But in such a way that if you get off the horse in a normal way they stay with the horse?
    – Willeke
    Commented Apr 6, 2023 at 14:49

4 Answers 4


If you want the horse to carry the bottles you have to attach them to the saddle or any bags you may have on the horse.
But if you want them to stay with you when you fall off the horse or are thrown off, you need them attached to you and in such a way they can not keep you connected to the horse running away.

As the other answer indicated, a backpack is the most reliable way to do that. But if you insist on the horse carrying the weight, you will to be inventive.
I do not ride but I think that anything that ties you to the horse is a bad plan, even when the connection is supposed to break or untie in an emergency. Knots do get jammed, string turns out to be stronger than expected. So I would suggest not to attach the bottles to the horse at all.
Attach the bottles with some thin string to your body, ideally so thin it should break if the bottles do not fall of the horse with you.

The connection to the horse should be even weaker. But I can not think of a way that is going to work and not have the bottles fall of when not wanted.

I have quite a bit of experience with knots, about 50 years, and I say there is no knot that does what you ask for.

  • Upvoted as a paranoid martial arts instructor of mine insisted on never wearing the knife hung over the neck on anything strong: it's your knife but they can strangle you with it. So: rope yield strength.
    – Vorac
    Commented Apr 7, 2023 at 20:02

I suggest a small backpack, such as a hydration bladder pack.

I ride bikes and for a long time had resisted wearing a backpack. They make my back sweaty, they put more weight on the tailbones, they make me lean forward more.

However, in a search for more water capacity I bought a tiny bladder backpack (not at home, so can't check, but I think its a Camelbak Lobo). It has enough room for the water, a raincoat, and maybe a small pouch of stuff. As a cycling pack it's designed to carry phone, wallet, keys and maybe a food bar or two.

I like it. It is small enough that it doesn't inconvenience me. Wearing it for many hours on the bike is almost effortless. It's also small enough to wear under a raincoat.


The first thing that comes to mind is a bit of Velcro, You could easily sew or attach one side to the saddle, and the other side to one of the bottles. Then have some form of rope or cordage that goes from the bottle to your pack or belt or something. So that if you do happen to fall, the rope pulls the bottle loose from the Velcro.

The downside to this, is it creates a loop for brush or branches to hook and snag on. Generally speaking I would agree with the others that a well fitting small form backpack may be your best, and safest, bet.

However, no one had mentioned something like Velcro so i wanted to offer it as a possible solution. I would only use the bare minimum amount to keep the bottle kit in place though, which may take some trial and error.


If you really do not want to carry a backpack, there are plenty of quick release knots list here: https://www.animatedknots.com/quick-release-knots. You could attach the quick-release end to your foot or to a snap hook hanging on your hip. I would advise you to test several knots of the list until you found one that just fits your needs.

  • Most quick release knots are mostly reliable but not always.
    – Willeke
    Commented Apr 7, 2023 at 16:19
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    Commented Apr 8, 2023 at 20:58

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