How to Anchor a Kayak

by Ariel Phillips
A kayak anchor is helpful if you do stationary acts such as bird watching.

A kayak anchor is helpful if you do stationary acts such as bird watching.

If you use your kayak to fish or do any other relatively stationary acts, such as bird watching or diving nearby, you'll probably want to invest in a kayak anchor. Kayak anchors come in different sizes, shapes and weights, and most come in kayak anchor systems that include everything you need to anchor your kayak. This includes the anchor, a cleat, an anchor line, a bow pulley wheel, an anchor float, hardware, a carrying case and carabiners.

1. Avoid putting the anchor down in rough water. The anchor will hold the kayak in place and make it hard to adjust to the rapids and swells of the water. This can lead to a number of problems, including the capsizing of the kayak.

2. Determine that the bottom of the lake or river is not too soft or mucky. Avoid using an anchor in a river or lake bed that could cause difficulties when you try to pull out. A stuck anchor can result in a flooded kayak.

3. Drop the anchor and slowly release the appropriate amount of anchor line until the anchor reaches the bottom of the lake, river or ocean.

4. Secure the anchor line by tying it to the carabiner that is attached to the anchor float. Make sure the anchor float is on the anchor side of the carabiner and not the kayak side, to avoid tangling.

5. Clip the carabiner to the anchor line loop and secure it with a cleat or some kind of clamp. Pull the anchor line until it reaches the stern before securing it.

Items you will need

  • Kayak
  • Kayak anchor system

About the Author

Ariel Phillips is an editor and writer living in Portland, Ore. He has written for "n+1 Journal" and "The Rumpus Magazine," among others. He maintains an interest in a variety of subjects, including art, culture, the environment, media, the sciences and sports. He earned bachelor's degrees in art and philosophy from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

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