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A Guide to Kayak Fishing Anchors

Kayaks are great tools for fishing. They can help you explore new fishing areas that receive less fishing pressure, and can potentially help you catch more fish.

Whether you just purchased your first kayak, or you’re exploring new rigging solutions, this guide will help you to personalize your kayak for the most enjoyable experience possible while out on the water.

Anchors

Anchoring is an important way to effectively fish an area from a kayak. Kayak anchors come in a variety of shapes and sizes. It’s important to find the one best suited for your needs and for the areas in which you plan on fishing. Winds, tides and currents all influence the position of your kayak. It’s important to have the ability to stay in the area that the fish are holding to, whether it be a shoreline, a reef, or submerged timber – and not drift away. This can be a tedious process and ultimately results in less time fishing and more time adjusting your kayak. In this article, we discuss the different styles of anchors used in kayak fishing so that you can choose the best anchor for your needs.

The YakGear Mushroom Anchor is a good choice for anglers who primarily fish calm, protected waters because it’s less prone to snagging upon retrieval. If you are primarily fishing waters with moderate current and wind, then the YakGear Grapnel Anchor is a great choice. The Grapnel Anchor is a great all-around anchor for multiple environments, and it’s collapsible so that it can be easily stored in your kayak. The Grapnel Anchor is available in two weights — 1.5 pounds, ideal for calm waters, and 3.3 pounds for other conditions. If you encounter a snag while trying to retrieve your anchor, the Grapnel Anchor will also allow you to break away from the snag using the Rock-Rig method shown here. This technique can be used with the Bruce Claw, and the required hardware comes with both YakGear Grapnel Anchor Kits.

YakGear Mushroom Anchor – 5 Pound
YakGear Mushroom Anchor – 5 Pound

For kayak anglers who fish areas with strong currents and little-to-no wind protection, the YakGear Bruce Claw Anchor is the better option. This anchor is generally the favorite among coastal kayak anglers where strong winds and tides are a factor, as its plow-style method of grabbing the bottom offers the best hold.

One of the great advantages of kayak fishing is that you can access shallow waters that most boats can’t get to. If fishing shallow waters is your thing, we recommend using a YakStick. The YakStick allows you to silently anchor. It also doubles as a scaled-down push pole traditionally used on skiffs for sight-fishing shallow water flats. The push pole can be for both saltwater and freshwater applications. YakGear offers three different stake-out anchors – the original 6-foot Mud Stick and the Yak Stick Floating Anchor in 6-foot and 8.75-foot lengths.

YakGear – YakStick Mud Anchor
YakGear – YakStick Mud Anchor

Kayak fishers should not overlook the YakGear Drift Anchor. A drift anchor is not to hold you in place, but to control the rate at which you drift. This can be extremely valuable when fishing open bodies of water, deep or shallow. If you drift too quickly (common in large bodies of water) then your bait/lure may not present naturally. The drift anchor also allows you more time to fish a certain area and not drift over it too fast.

How to Attach the Anchor to Your Kayak

Now that you know the styles of kayak anchors, let’s talk about ways to secure your anchor to your kayak. The most rudimentary way is by installing a YakGear Anchor Cleat to your kayak. You can install the cleat anywhere on your kayak. What if you are kayak fishing where current or winds are present? Install your cleat at either the bow or stern to avoid flipping. You can fasten the anchor to the cleat by using YakGear Nylon Diamond Braid Rope. Remember to use at least three times the feet of depth in which you are planning to anchor. If you are planning on anchoring in 5 feet of water, your anchor line should be at least 15 feet.

The YakGear Anchor Deluxe Anchor Trolley is a favorite anchor attachment method among kayak anglers. The anchor trolley is a pulley system that allows you to adjust your kayak’s position depending on wind and current. You can attach the anchor line to the Anchor Trolley Triangle, which comes included, and pull the anchor line along the side of the kayak from bow to stern. If you wish to face upwind/current, use the anchor trolley to pull the anchor to the bow of the kayak. To face downwind/current, use the trolley to pull the anchor toward the stern of the kayak. The anchor trolley comes in two variations, the Deluxe and Heavy Duty.

YakGear Deluxe Anchor Trolley with Pulleys
YakGear Deluxe Anchor Trolley with Pulleys

What if you hook into the big one? The fish begins peeling line from the reel with no end in sight. The only option you have is to give chase to recoup some of your lost line. For this scenario, there’s the YakGear Anchor Float Leash. This anchor allows you to give chase when the big one hits. The high-visibility orange float makes it easy to locate and retrieve your anchor when the fight is done.

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