How To Anchor A Boat
How to anchor a boat is an important skill with larger boats, but an often overlooked skill for small boat operators.
Here is a list of important steps to know when anchoring your boat. Once you have done them a number of times it will feel like second nature, and you will feel confident that your boat will be secure every time you set your anchor.
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- approach slowly - watch for obstacles in the water, swimmers, current, wind - get to know the area in which you plan to anchor
- leave enough space between you and other boats - will your boat be able to rotate 360 degrees around your anchor without hitting another boat?
- communicate clearly with others in your boat - stay calm and stay positive
- check your gear - make sure the rode, chain and shackles are all properly connected and that the end of the anchor rode is attached to your boat
- lower your anchor to the bottom to check depth - throwing an anchor is a sure sign of an amateur
- calculate the length of rode you need to let out - ideally you would let out 7 times the depth - not letting out enough rode is a common mistake when anchoring
- reverse your boat to pull on the anchor and set the anchor in the bottom
- take a sighting on shore features to determine whether the boat is secure or moving
- use two anchors if it is windy or there is a strong current - a second anchor gives you the confidence that your boat will be secure
- use a bow and stern anchor to anchor "stern-to" - for example in a situation where you want the bow of the boat facing into the waves