canoe anchor system

Just got a new canoe and I need to rig some sort of anchor system. I’ve seen some of the locking anchor systems on the market. 75.00 from old town seems pretty high. I also found a similar product from North Basin Outfitters but can’t get a hold of them by phone. Has anyone had any experience with an anchor system? If so what brand, where did you get it, any experience with North Basin Outfitters, etc. Any help would be great thanks.

Re: canoe anchor system
I never liked having the anchor attached to the front of the canoe by one of the mounts available on the market. I attach my anchor line next to me in the canoe and also attach a second line to the anchor which is attached to the bow of the canoe. When I set the anchor out, I let the canoe drift back so that it is being held by the bow line. When pulling up anchor, I pull the line next to me to bring the anchor back under me where I can pull it straihgt up from the bottom. This works much better for me.

inexpensive canoe anchor
I got an anchor to help fish from my canoe last year. I looked in some canoeing catalogs and saw some 3 pound folding fluke cast iron anchors. Then I found that most boat shops and sporting goods shops sell the same anchor for $10-$15. Got mine from West Marine.

I run the line through the grab handle at the bow and tie off on the thwart so that I can easily control the anchor line from the center of the canoe, yet it pulls from the bow. When I want to pull it up, I just paddle forward and grab the line.

Here ya go

– Last Updated: Apr-14-04 7:08 AM EST –

Nice system, I've never implemented. I simply stow a 12# mushroom anchor behind the seat and tie off to the seat thwart as needed. In a tandem boat delegate this to the bow paddler.


Frogot to paste the link last night...

There are a lot of inexpensive options available but first…

What kind of water? Calm or running?

What kind of waterbottom? Sand? Mud? Rock?

What depths? Over/Under 7’?

For sandy or muddy places under 7’ deep I use a 10’ piece of pvc as a stake anchor.

In deeper waters that are either calm or have a low flow rate, and that have soft bottoms, I’ve used old window weights or the little 3# folding anchors. Some folks use dumbells from 3# to 10#.

A small burlap sack filled with small rocks or gravel works pretty well in waters where the bottom is rocky and if it gets snagged to the point of no return you haven’t added anything terrible to the environment. The rocks are natural and the burlap will decompose pretty quickly.

PLEASE learn to tie at least one slippery knot to tie your anchor off with. It makes a quick release really easy to do.

Easy system
Install one of those thingies that allow a line to run through it (I forget the name) by the bow. Install a small cleat near where you sit, most likely in the stern. Run the anchor line through the “thingie” (- available at any boating store) and take up all slack so the anchor is hanging in the air by the bow, then tie off on the cleat. When you want to anchor, simply untie the cleat, let out an appropriate amount of line for the conditions, and tie off. When you leave, pull up on the anchor, let it hang from the front, and tie off on the cleat. Works on my kayak just fine!

canoe anchor sys.
ditto on the 3# folding anchor ,check at/in Cabelas under “float tube” anchors . they also have a good selection of others such as mushroom, cleat etc.Or you can go the route of making your own out of the appropriate coffee can filled with concrete and an screw eyelet for attachment. I use a carabiner to stand off the rope from the bow.

Another suggestion…
Since you’re in a canoe and have a little extra space you can try this too. You know those little black plastic containers that plants come in? Use one to stow your anchor line. The hole in the bottom will allow wet line to drain and dry. Leave the first 2’ of the free end of the line hanging out then just start feeding the line into the container and let it fall as it may. No fancy loops. The last bit of line that you fed into the container will be the part nearest to the anchor. Now, to deploy your anchor just drop it and let the line feed out. When you pick up the anchor feed it back into the container in the same free flowing manner. I’ve been doing this for years and have NEVER had a tangled anchor line.

With a couple of mini-blocks and some eyelets (inchworms) you can make trolley system for anchoring that will allow you to anchor from the bow, stern or amidship. It’s a popular system with us kayakers but should have advantages for canoe oriented folks too.


– Last Updated: Apr-16-04 12:03 PM EST –

I have used a heavy pice of chain for years. It probably weighs about 6# and is about 10' long folded and tied so that it's got about 6 1'6" "fingers" that hang from the rope works great!

I like the plant bucket idea.


a rock
I have rarely brought an anchor with me. I have a brush hook and use it to grab overhanging branches or standing timber. It works great. When I have found need of an anchor I simply take out my 25 foot rope and tie a big rock to it. I bass fish so I do not need one often enough to justify bringing one along.


– Last Updated: Apr-19-04 11:38 PM EST –

concrete is nearly nuetral in saltwater and the coffee can shape won't hold in a current,I prefer a bruce with 3 ft of leadcore instead of chain,a small bruce,2lbs holds amazing well but unfortunatly lacks the convience of the folder; regardless a short lenght of leadcore line (3ft)should be used on any anchor if any current is present.

Anchor System

I have used the old town anchor system, its nice if your want to sit in the middle of your canoe and anchor at the rear, but its not worth the $75. There are some knock offs sold by local dealers that work as well for about half. The cheapest and most effective methods have already been mentioned on this list serve. I now use a net bag anchor system sold through Cabela’s that allows you to put any heavy piece of lead, or any rock, or rocks found on the ground where you paddle. I went thos route because it can use it on my float tube, pram, canoe and kayak.

How about a dumbbell? (not me)
I have been carrying a 2-1/2 pound dumbbell as an anchor. Other than occasional fights with tangled grass, it seems to work fairly well.

I use a 50-foot 1/2-inch rope/cord that I wrap around an extension cord holder (the one that looks like the holder for strings of christmas tree lights).

So far, so good.

Stole my idea
I use a dumbell also. After losing several folding anchors and a mushroom I tried a dumbell. Still using it after a couple of years, no hang ups. I use the 5 lb. rubber coated one.

Canoe Anchor
Research canoe anchors in the buyers’ guide.