Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: MdR, CA
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Sounds like the stern anchor trick is the equivalent to parking diagonally in a parking lot to keep other cars away or spreading your stuff out on seats to your right and left in a theater so no one sits next to you.
I have another take... in the Channel Islands bow and stern anchoring is pretty common due to topography and allowing more boats access into limited anchorages. 5 weeks ago I was on the South side of Catalina approaching Little Harbor. Anyone familiar with the anchorage will tell you it is very protected but can accomodate 1-2 boats with a bow anchor only and 3-6 boats with bow and stern (I've seen references it can hold 10... would have to be one of those circular raft ups to make that work!
As I approached there was one other boat anchored. I made a loop around the boat and was unable to tell if a stern anchor was also deployed as there was a dinghy and some other lines/gear hanging off the stern of the boat. I would always give deference to the boat first anchored. During my loop the owner came to the cockpit from down below - I was close enough that we were able to have the following exchange... I asked "are you laying on a stern anchor also?" His reply - "I am - let me know if you need any help or if you need me to adjust our position."
My wife and I were able to set our own bow and stern anchors, relative to his boat's position without a problem. I was grateful that (a) he wasn't taking up the entire harbor with a bow anchor only which wouldn't be hard to do if you dropped with an excessive scope and if there were any wind change and (b) his kindness in communication and cooperation. You could tell that he was with his family (2 kids in tow) on an extended cruise with a very seaworthy boat and he exemplified the attitude we should all share amongst each other. Kudo's to his attitude and communication. Not all bow/stern anchorers are out to get you...
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