When we bought the boat we knew we were going to be spending as much time as we could at anchor. The most beautiful places in the world don’t have marinas or pontoons. Real freedom relies on a solid dependable anchor.
Before we left Scotland we installed a new 20kg Rocna anchor. Rocna recommended a 15kg anchor for our size and weight of boat but the extra 5kg is nice to have on board. The anchor is attached to the chain with a Kong connector.
In the last year we have spent 240 days at anchor. Often the pilot book has written that an anchorage has bad holding or that the anchor may need to be set a few times. Once – in Spain – we had problems setting the anchor because the bottom was a mass of weed. And only once it has not held when set and that was very strange. We anchored in Friendship Bay, Bequia and the anchor held perfectly all night. The next morning we started to drift and didn’t stop. Unfortunately we didn’t dive on the anchor when we set it to check if it was really set and in to what. We just pulled back and checked the chain tensioned.
So the numbers are:
– set 239 times from 240
– held 239 times from 240
In Spain, in a thunderstorm we once had 30 knot winds blowing us in all directions. We only had 20 meters of chain out as we were in a protected fishing port and the weather forecast was 5 knot winds from the west. We were being blown in circles and the anchor held us through it all. As you can see on the anchor watch, we swung within a 30 meter radius and the tablet was in the middle of the boat so the anchor was turning over and resetting within about five meters. Impressive!
Having watched a lot of people anchoring over the last year, it is obvious that a lot of badly set anchors are more a “crew problem” than an “anchor problem”. We regularly see big white charter catamarans sail to a point, stop and dump twenty or thirty meters of chain on top of their anchor. I am not sure that even a Rocna would help much if set in this way.