12 May 2009


For those of you who bring an anchor into a hawse pipe, and the anchor must be brought up and face the right direction to house it, rather than try to lean over with a long pole poking at it to turn it about, just back up as you bring it aboard, and it will automatically turn facing the way you need it.


Here’s how to clean your anchor quickly, when it wants to bring a big sample of the bottom aboard with it. When it comes off the bottom, and has come up a few feet, give it a quick drop. This assumes you are in clear water where you can see what is happening, and you are not moving.  If any thing remains on the anchor, backing will help clean it, without banging it on the hull. Of course you must have a wash down on the chain as it comes aboard, and it still pays to stand by with a hose in hand. Best of all, if your boat didn’t come with an enclosure that keeps the dirty water from running down the deck, you can often build your own, and cut some scuppers in the toe rails at the low point of the blocked area, so the dirty water runs overboard.

With very few exceptions, never anchor with two anchors. The exceptions are anchoring in a tidal sluice way, where you place one anchor upstream and one down stream, or if in a heavy gusting situation where your boat is being batted from one side and then the other, and the motion is miserable. This happened to us just once in thirty two years. Last exception is a very tight anchorage, where those around you have two anchors out. Best is to avoid these places, the risk is too great. Most times when we see someone anchored with two anchors, we know he, or his anchors, is not to be trusted, and we move away.


Get some means of communicating with your partner that is hands free, to be used when anchoring or going into a slip. We bought the combination microphone and ear phone set, the first ones at FAO Schwartz, the second set at an SSCA Gam. The two sets were the same equipment, but the first ones were half the price.  Both have proved invaluable. Best part of the second set is the soft case that came with it, which keeps the off switch from being moved to on, accidentally. Doesn’t help if we just forget to turn them off.