DIY Travel Swing

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When I was a child, we had a ditch behind the fence at the back of our home.  It’s about a 20 foot ditch and we found a fabulous vine that we would use to swing out over the ditch.  Our neighbors also had a rope swing in their back yard.  The father actually attached a rope to a bow and arrow and shot it up into the trees to install it…..THAT is how big it was.  My brothers and I spent many days with the neighborhood children swinging on these vines and ropes.




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It’s been probably a year since someone shared a link to a travel swing in a thread on Play at Home Mom.  That nifty little swing, in it’s own nifty little bag, has been in my mind ever since.  Yesterday I went searching for it, posting about it in our closed group.  I was on a mission, so instead of waiting around for someone to hopefully post a link to the swing, I just built my own.  I learned about a retrieval rope the hard way when Amy and I took our kids camping last year and we had to hoist someone up against a poison ivy covered tree to reach the snap hook carabiner and get the swing down.  Luckily, nobody got poison ivy, and a retrieval rope would have been much easier.

I’m always scouting places to hang a swing…..

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Age 3


You can find everything you need at Home Depot, but I’ve provided some affiliate links for your convenience because some of the items are actually cheaper from amazon (specifically, the rope).  I had a pine round and carabiners at home, so my total cost was less than $20.



- SNAP HOOK CARABINER (5/16″ or 1/4″)

- PINE ROUND (less than $5 at Home Depot)

- ZIP TIES (optional)



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Using a drill bit about the same width as your rope, drill a hole into the middle of the pine round.

Burn the end of the rope to keep it from fraying.

Run the rope through the hole and knot the bottom (we also secured it with a zip tie).

Cut your rope to the length you want. (This will vary per person.  I cut mine rather short, but can add length using more rope and carabiners.)

Use the extra rope as the retrieval rope.  (I will probably buy a thin rope for this, instead of using the thick rope that we have.)

Now go find a tree, or hang it from your dome.

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Swinging from climbing dome and indoor attachment.



We’ve had some times to test out our DIY travel swing.  My only concern is that it’s too big to fit into my backpack – dagummit!  I might have my husband cut it down just a tiny bit.  Otherwise, it was a huge hit……

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~ AK

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6 Responses to DIY Travel Swing

  1. Jane says:

    I just located your blog via Pinterest while looking for activities to do with my grandchildren. I found some great things we can do and also ran across the pic of you swinging over the ditch.
    We had vines and ditches where I lived on the coast of SC and loved to “tarzan” over the ditch while yelling. Well, my brothers were more likely to yodel than I.
    The last time I went ditch swinging was when I was about 44 and my mom was 68. I went across first. It was awful. I told her, “Don’t do it , mama, it pulled my shoulders out of joint”. She did it anyway and sprained her ankle. She and I had a good laugh about our silliness on the way to the doctor.
    love your blog.

  2. Becky says:

    I’m going to have to do some digging on how the retrieval rope works.. I don’t understand where the carabiner fits in this puzzle.

  3. Ellamenta says:

    Important suggestion is to smooth-sand the edges of the pine round, or you risk scratched thighs unless you’re wearing jeans.

  4. Kristin says:

    could you explain more about the retrieval rope and the carabiner and how you attach the swing to a limb or inside the dome?

  5. A swing is something we enjoy at any age. However, as city life has encroached most of the areas, swings have become history. It is nice that you have shared this unique way to enjoy a swing anywhere on the go. I am going to try this the next time I plan a picnic with my family. Great post and very nice pictures.

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