Kayak Fishing Ultimate Resource

Wednesday, 06 April 2011 02:00

Kayak Anchor Setups

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Kayak Anchor Setups Photograph by Rob Choi

The kind of bottom surface you're kayak fishing over will determine what kind of anchor you want to use. The depth of the water will also play a role in your decision as well. The following are some personal preferences that I have acquired for the different places I fish.


If anchoring in sandy or soft bottom then I use a 5.5lb grapple style anchor. I secure the main anchor rope to the bottom of the anchor and tie 20lb monofilament to the top, holding the rope in place. That way, if the anchor gets lodge under something, I can lift up on the rope, break the monofilament and bring the anchor up by the bottom. Otherwise it would be impossible to dislodge the anchor.

I also cut the rope and tied on a heavy duty swivel so I can detach the rope easily if I want to switch out anchors. Also, the swivel helps reduce rope twists since the anchor likes to spin when pulling it up through the water.


My main is 100 feet since there are times I anchor fairly deep (30'-50'). I attached a heavy duty off-shore swivel/clip to easily attach the right anchor for the situation.

There are other styles of anchors that work well (ie: Bruce anchors), but I have not tried them yet since the grapple style has worked well for me.


I also have a small grapple style anchor that I use more to drag. It helps slow down my drift if current and/or wind is pushing my kayak too fast through the target area.


If I'm on a flat where it's less than 4 feet deep, I'll bring my stake-out pole instead of an anchor. I won one made by Hobie in last year's TKAA tourney. It's easier to handle. No rope. Just put it through your anchor trolley and stick it in the ground. Done deal.


If anchoring in rocks or an area with a lot of structure, I use a mini wreck anchor. Instead of rebar, like on the large wreck anchor for big boats, these have thin flexible stainless steel rods. For those that are in the Tidewater, VA area, they are available at Ocean's East 2. The guy that introduced me to these awesome anchors works there. Ask Kayak Kevin about the "piling huggers" special set up.


They may look small and perhaps too thin to hold in fast current, but I was very surprised to find that they held well and they were very easy to recover also.

like to have my rope coiled under my leg so it's easy to disperse. I used to keep it wrapped around something but it took up room, became cumbersome, and this was just easier. When I recover the anchor, the rope ends up in a coil there anyway.


I always send my anchor rope to one end of the kayak or the other.  I rarely anchor up to the side.  It can quickly become disastrous in fast current.  Also I like to attach a buoy (piece of a fat pool noodle) outside the anchor trolley clip, so just in case I need to release my anchor line because of emergency or to chase an epic fish, it's quick and easy.  For more information about how I rigged my anchor trolley and cleats visit Rigging an Ocean Kayak Trident 13.

I hope this helps. Tight lines and be safe!


About the Author: Rob Choi is an avid kayak angler from the Chesapeake Bay area in Virginia and a Pro Staff Member at Yakangler.com. He has earned a reputation among the locals as the fish junkie with reckless abandon to logic, time, and societal norms in his pursuit for the "tug that is the drug".  He shares his love of the sport through his blog www.angling-addict.com.

Read 42833 times Last modified on Wednesday, 07 September 2011 08:03
Rob Choi

About the Author: Rob Choi is an avid kayak angler from Richmond, VA and although he lives close to the mighty James River, he frequents the Chesapeake Bay more often. His addiction to the salt has earned him a reputation among the locals as the fish junkie with reckless abandon to logic, time, and societal norms in his pursuit for the “tug that is the drug”. What he lacks in long term experience, he makes up in his passionate dedication to the sport now. He shares his love of the sport through his blog, www.angling-addict.com, as well as being a prostaff member at Ocean Kayak, Maui Jim Sunglasses, YakAngler.com, YakAttack, Werner Paddles, and crew member of HOOK 1 and Kayak Bass Fishing.



# ABadBackcast 2011-04-06 07:59
Awesome! You guys probably use ALL of those up there too.....
# robchoi 2011-04-06 14:06
Yup. I know I do.
-1 # Hammerhead 2011-04-07 19:49
Great tips, thanks. Check out the post I just made on the "Flounder Pounder" it's an anchor and chum bad in one that a friend made.
# Pam 2011-04-11 21:32
Great article! Adam was talking to me this weekend about ways to rig the grapple style anchor so that I wouldn't keep losing them. 8)
# Plan B 2013-02-28 04:05
I noticed that you have a cannonball anchor in one of the pics but say nothing about it in the article.
My friend recently purchased one of these because he is extremely worried about ever getting hung up with one of the other styles. I have made it clear to him that in my opinion, NO anchor is fool proof against hang ups as the rope is always a problematic variable.

Any advise on this?

Any advise on size and type of rope?
# tandem 2014-10-09 12:37
An idea that I heard on a youtube video someone had posted is to write the last 4 digits of your license number on your anchor float. If there is any question over who it belongs to you can identify it.

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