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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, my kayak should be here tomorrow and I will start rigging it up once it gets here. The only issue I have is Im going to want to anchor sometimes in rivers. Not in fast current but mild to slow. Now I understand the dangers and all so I'd like advice as to minimize that. What I think is to have two anchor trolleys on both sides, lets hear what the pros think..
 

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Honestly, the safest way to do it is just don't use an anchor. I fish rivers a lot, some of which are fairly quick, and I have yet to find a real need for an anchor. I have used anchors in the past and found that they are really just something else in my kayak that is unnecessary. In the first 10 years of my kayak angling experience I used anchors from time to time and rarely did they seem to give me any advantage, so I stopped using them all together. This year begins my 31st year of kayak angling, and I have never regretted giving up the anchors. While fishing rivers, if I want to stay stationary, I just point my kayak upstream. It takes very little effort to keep most kayaks in position if you point them into the current or wind. If you do decide to use an anchor, be sure that you have some sort of quick release option so that you can get off that anchor in a hurry if you need to. Of course this is just my opinion, and I am sure there are plenty of kayak anglers who have very good reasons to use an anchor. Good luck, be safe, and happy fishing.
 

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2 anchor trolleys on each side thats a lot of anchor trolleys :). Anchor will depend on the river. I only go in shallow rivers so a stake out pole works well. Stuck through anchor trolley ring works only up to 5 ft deep in fast current. Use a modified grapnel for lake and some rivers that are deeper.

You only need 1 full length trolley on one side for river. The current will set your direction with the wind not a factor. On a lake with wind 1 one each side would cover every single degree. But you dont gain double only 5-10% with more lines to deal with. When you get fishing you will find that you like to deploy your anchor one one side or the another. Dont want lines criss crossing inside the boat.

For me I like the anchor trolley on the same side as the arm I cast with and keep the anchor stored on that side also. I would only set up with one first couple times out before doing 2 right off the bat if thats your choice
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The thing is Ill be fly fishing from it and standing up a lot so anchoring in slow current or eddies to stand and cast from.
 

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Well., .this wound up becoming a bit of an essay. Welcome to kayak fishing!! I've been enjoying it for probably 15+ years. I also use powered boats and wade, both fly fishing and using conventional/pin tackle.

Since the first step to successfully solving a problem is often correctly defining it, here's how/where I fish. I have a couple sit insides and a sit on top. I generally fish the Huron and other rivers/lakes in SE MI. I don't stand up in my yaks. The vast majority of the moving water I fish is probably waist deep or less, probably 95% I could stand up in if I fell out. For fly fishing, I use the yak either as a "water taxi", secure the boat, get out and fish, or cast from a seated position. The function of my anchor system varies and may at any one time be to:

>>>slow the boat down in current
>>>stop the boat in current on fairly short notice
>>>"park" the boat in one spot on a lake
>>>"park" the boat in a river in spots of lower current

SETUP--I use a chain anchor. I have about 20-30 ft of white rope attached to the chain. You can attach in the middle or at the end if you're planning to "drag chain" (more below on this). The white anchor rope goes up through a carabiner that's attached to the aft grab-handle, keeping the anchor pull along the centerline of the yak. Then the white anchor rope goes up to where I can reach it from the cockpit and the end is secured there. On one of my boats, I put an adjustable cleat nearby so I can tie the anchor rope off at shorter lengths. On the others, I just find somewhere to take a hitch or two, since it's generally a short term adjustment (in low current, I might just stuff it under my leg).

I then have a second, fixed-length, DIFFERENT COLOR line that runs from the cockpit (I tie it somewhere I can easily reach with my right hand) to just past where the anchor line goes through the 'biner (ie- between the anchor and the boat). Then when I want to move, I pull in the colored line. When you get to the biner that's over the white anchor line, you can now pull up until you reach the chain. This allows me to pull the chain up alongside the right side of the boat and I drape it over the right gunnel, ready for quick deployment. So there's a length adjustment ability on the actual anchor rope that goes to the chain to adjust for the current speed and depth, but the colored line is fixed. (If that doesn't make sense, maybe I can post a sketch). I have two setups like this and keep them in nylon sacks so I can use the yaks for general goofing off but add the anchor systems fairly easily for a river trip.

It doesn't take a LOT of chain to hold you on most of the rivers down here unless you're in the main part of the current or it's during the higher flows in the Spring. You can also let out a smaller amount of chain to slow your drift. The problem here comes with the fact that the depth is often changing so you can get anything from a full stop to almost no braking action and you are continuously adjusting the length.

FISHING/USE--

RIVERS.

I realize there can be concerns with anchoring a yak (or any boat for that matter) in moving water. It's probably good, especially at first, to consider what might go wrong with your plan-- big wakes, wind changes, anchor caught on the bottom, rope tangle, etc. On my bass boat, I keep a knife close at hand and everyone knows where it is. On the yaks, I am generally in "low threat" waters, but still generally have a knife with me in case I need to cut away something.

Method One...Typically, I will fish headed downstream from hole-to-hole in a "run and gun" fashion. When I reach a likely spot, I'll paddle backwards to get some speed against the current. I then have a few casts as the boat runs out of upstream speed and begins to accelerate to the speed of the current. If I catch a fish in this time, it gets a bit busy. Step 1-set hook, step 2-stow paddle in lap, step 3--grab anchor chain with right hand and chuck overboard. Now the boat will be under control as you fight and land/release the fish, stow gear as required and pull on the colored line to retrieve anchor and drape over the gunnel for next use.

Method Two..On other rivers when I want to spend some more time fishing/wading in one place, I'll pull over into a slower current area and chuck the chain ashore to make sure I don't look up to see my yak headed downstream without me.

Method Three..Where I want to wade a longer section and don't want to have to wade back upstream for the yak, I can detach the chain and hook the yak to my wading belt, letting the boat streamline below me as I walk. I try to imagine what my plan would be if I fell in this configuration and don't do it a lot except in very easy wading conditions. Also, I am not a gymnast and have several decades wear and tear on me. I can easily wade in depths where there's no way I could get back in the yak, so it's a good idea to have a plan how to get back into the yak before you have to dog paddle alongside it to the next shallow spot. I haven't had to do that yet. I will add that depending on the length of your legs and the width of your boat, you may be able to just shove the bow of the boat through your legs and then sit back down into the seat. It took quite a stretch, but I used to do this in one of my sit insides and just leave my mucky wader feet outside the boat as I floated to the next place. As it turns out, you can damage a nerve in your leg this way and lose feeling in part of your thigh for several weeks, ask me how I know!

Some issues with river fishing I've had/observed:
---Yak/boat stability when single point anchored in current. Two of my yaks do pretty well, they are "pointy" on the aft end. My SOT (perception pescador) is a little more square in the back and it tends to move around more. The worst in this aspect is my float boat, like two yaks together in a rowing frame. That thing will head all over the river and probably needs a better harness if I am going to fish from it a lot. I've had it for probably 20 years and generally only fish from it in lakes, in rivers, it's more of a one person water taxi.

LAKE USE.
I will usually shorten up the chain a little by fastening in the middle (or a couple places) of the chain so it's more like one big mass like a more traditional anchor. I don't have anchor trolleys, so if I need the anchor in the middle of the boat, I'll just pull the line up that way, adjust depth as required and sit on it, or half hitch it somewhere. You might want to consider what might happen if some sudden disturbance happens (example large wake) and you have your boat secured to the bottom along side, it could set up a roll over.

BTW--
Another option to consider is a bush anchor, depending on where you fish.

Hope that helped, and hope to see you out on the river!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Dude thanks for all that advice and sharing! I appreciate that fully.. I think Im going to go with one on a trolley with a 3lb muchroom anchor
 

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I had trollies and usually ended up wanting to face downstream, and had a small anchor that sucked.
So I now use a 20lb chain hooked to a 30' retractable dog leash(for 110lbs dogs). Coming out of the back of my boat. This holds my Hobie pro angler loaded to the hilt in a strong current. The anchor line management was the biggest pain and the dog leash solves that.
I also use 6' section of 1/2"-3/4" pvc pipe with a T fitting on the top and a small metal rod in the bottom. I can jam that in a scupper hole in medium to slow current, or in conjunction with my anchor to keep me from swaying.
 

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I use a 10 pound dumbbell and keep a knife in my pocket. When the current is fast it's just like having a huge drift sock on.
 

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I had trollies and usually ended up wanting to face downstream, and had a small anchor that sucked.
So I now use a 20lb chain hooked to a 30' retractable dog leash(for 110lbs dogs). Coming out of the back of my boat. This holds my Hobie pro angler loaded to the hilt in a strong current. The anchor line management was the biggest pain and the dog leash solves that.
I also use 6' section of 1/2"-3/4" pvc pipe with a T fitting on the top and a small metal rod in the bottom. I can jam that in a scupper hole in medium to slow current, or in conjunction with my anchor to keep me from swaying.
20#?

Seems like overkill?

Even in my driftboat, unless on gravel.
 

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I fish the Muskegon a lot and use a chain anchor. Goes out the back and I face forward. Have tried them all and some will get hung up in the rocks. Never happens with the chain.
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Never needed a anchor in rivers in my pos kayak today was a little windy on the lake. so I used a tow strap and c clamp worked extremely well.
 

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Some good responses on here. I'd forgotten about the dog leash solution, I actually have a note somewhere to look for a cheap one. Maybe Harbor Freight..

Another yak "anchor" (of sorts..) I have is a home-made "Drift Sock". I basically hacked one using a sewing machine, chunk of blue tarp, a few extra grommets, worm weights and some chunks of foam so that it would deploy correctly. I used it fly fishing in a salt water lagoon in a rented yak where there was a pretty good breeze. I'd paddle along and either cast or troll. If I got a strike, I set the hook, secure the paddle in my lap, and throw out the drift sock while I fought and released the fish (generally barracuda). Having the sock out put the wind at my back and kept the boat steady, also kept me from having a long paddle back every time.
 

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One of these are also another option.
Has its limitations, but...another choice if you can make it work.
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I fish the Muskegon a lot and use a chain anchor. Goes out the back and I face forward. Have tried them all and some will get hung up in the rocks. Never happens with the chain. View attachment 252876
Thats how I used to fish my canoe with chain sections with a clip so I could add sections to tailor the weight if I was in a heavy current and couldnt hold add a couple sections. Works great for rivers and no snags
 

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I strictly river fish with my kayak thus far. I installed a trolley anchor 3 weeks ago and have a dozen trips with it so far. I love it. I like to stop and fish areas for long periods of time and the trolley lets you cover a lot more water. There aren't many dangerous situations on the river I fish but I always keep a blade at the side of me seat just in case.
 

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I saw a great video on YouTube of a guy using a 40 ft retractable clothesline for an anchor line system. So I did that, link above, pull out all the line, secure the line so it doesn't retract, cut the line off leaving enough to tie in a better suited line, then hook to your anchor and release. Hooked up behind and to the base of my seat.

I felt I had a great improvement with the carabiner in the pics. You can see how it works. If I need to release the line/anchor I just pull on the line above the carabiner and the yak is free, to a point.

I fish mainly lakes and slow rivers, so my 3lb, 3 prong anchor works fine.

When I find some faster water this year, I plan to park the yak and get out and fish. Second year this year.
 
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