Anchoring 101

Hey All-

I have started this blog to assist some “New Dawgs” with NEW TRICKS as well as allow some “Old Dawgs” to CHIME IN or refresh some boating skills and or etiquette-

When Purchasing an anchor– Think of these:

*Length of Vessel

*Type of bottom of water (sand-mud-rock-ALL OF THE ABOVE)

*How will I store the anchor, rode, and chain

Most anchor sizing is by length. So, a 23-27′ boat will require a #(*) anchor. Well, if said storage is small, consider a “box style” anchor. IF a box style anchor isn’t for you, the normal Fortress style may be the trick. Seems these are the most popular for under 30′ vessels not already equipped with a “windlass” style anchoring system.

Most anchor types are by the bottom you are trying to hold.

Mud and Sand – Fortress

Rock Sand Mud (Larger Vessels) – Plough

Do I need a chain? The answer is YES. The weight of the chain holds the anchor to the bottom and allows the anchor to work as designed. It also allows the nylon lines to stay clear of most any sharp objects from the bottom. I like the coated ones, as they are easier on your hands, and storage space.

Connecting the pieces –

Shackles To ensure your anchor stays with your chain, rode, and mainly your boat ( if equipped with a ring in your anchor locker. If you tie off to a cleat , then so be it.

Line or (rode) – Select the dia. of rode based on the size of your vessel. It is noted that you have a 1/8″ of dia. of rode for every 9′ of boat you are holding. So a 27′ vessel would have 3/8″ rode. How long? Well, for most lakes, I use 150′ of rode along with my chain connected to my anchor. The formula I read for “how long” is for every foot of rode, requires 8′ of rode. If you want options for anchoring kits, consider something like this: Anchor kits.

How much chain and rode to I release to get a proper “hold”

Well, for calmer lake water I try to stay 15-30 feet of water depth. So, I will let out somewhere between 2′-3′ to every 1′ of water. That keeps the neighbors out of your rode, while keeping a proper rise/run on your angle. Should you have deeper water, and a bit “rougher” some say 3′-5′ to every 1′ of water depth.

How to know how much line you have out –

Well, if you aren’t color blind (like I am) you can use different colors of spray paint for every 10′ of rode. (clever, huh?) That way as you let the rode out, you can stop on… close, or in between the colored measurements based on how deep the water is.


I will make sure the nose of my vessel is into the wind, pull over where I want to drop my anchor and drop. Slowly put your boat in reverse to gain the proper rise/run or length or rode and chain you need… they tie her off.

Stay tuned for how to RETRIEVE YOUR ANCHOR in a future blog-

Your’s Truly,

Zane Stevenson

Atlanta Boat Broker

Please ask for any detail, or further clarification.

*** We are not affiliated with any retail establishment, and recommend you do research on the quality of product you are purchasing for your safety and others.