Anchor Advice for Sandy Bottom

I like to keep an anchor around so I can shoot photos from the water instead of going ashore.

I have a Wilderness Systems 175, a big boat by any measure. The grappling hook anchor commonly sold for kayaks proved worthless in the wind in Wellfeet harbor, which is a big sand bar- not a surprise.

I wanted to buy a small anchor with flukes (danforth/tie down engineering style. Anybody have any practical experience with these–should I get the 2.5 lb or 4 lb size.

Guessing based on experience

– Last Updated: Sep-08-14 6:39 PM EST –

I've used a weight as light as two pounds for anchoring a canoe when fishing on small ponds, but if the wind is blowing, you need much more weight than that. Weight is at least as important as gripping ability, and any anchor's ability to grip sand will be minimal, unless it is also extremely heavy so as to force long teeth to sink in deeply.

Of your two choices, I'd go with the heavier one, but I seriously doubt if the design of the anchor will matter much at all. Anyway, to take advantage of a fluked design, you will need a LOT of rope, like a length that's four times the depth of the water or more, another reason to just make sure it's heavy enough and leave it at that. I've found that an eight-pound mushroom anchor is enough to hold my 12-foot aluminum Jon boat in most conditions, so I suspect 4 or 4.5 pounds will be enough for your kayak.

I just looked at the anchor you want to buy. The 5-pound model is almost 20 inches long and 15 inches wide, and as already mentioned needs a very low angle of pull (lots of rope) to function as designed. An 8-pound mushroom anchor will provide a lot more anchoring power when very little rope is used, and it will take up less than one-third the space in your boat, without all those pointy things sticking out (I count five of them on the Danforth). I vote for something simple. Even an old window weight (used to be easy to find those things - not so much these days) would do the trick.

cheap adjustable ancholl
Bring an old sock and about 20’ or so of rope.when you get to your paddling destination, determine how much anchor you need. Fill the sock with stones or sand accordingly and cinch the rope to it. There is your anchor

I have one of these and have never had a problem. I’ve anchored in sand and had up to 10 kayaks raft up to me.

grapples useless for sand
Well I can tell you that anchor is useless on sand with a 10kt wind blowing and someone in the boat. I have the same one, except the grapples fold in.

need rocks
all good until there are no rocks or you want to anchor on a sand bar.

something to try
wow I did not realize its that big. I have a mushroom I could try, but I can’t imagine the mushroom trying to bury itself in the sand like a fluked anchor.

A light anchor in the 2 1/2 lb range should suffice if it has flukes to dig into the sand. That assumes that you “set the hook” by using enough scope (line 4-5x the depth or more). A short piece of chain helps to lower the angle of pull. Anchor and chain is clunky in a kayak and I would be tempted to just carry a mesh bag and fill it with rocks and use a lot of line.

I have used a Danforth anchor in the 8-10 pound range for a power boat that weighted 3000 pounds with good success, but that included a chain and 150 feet of anchor line (rode).