Anchoring anywhere, anytime - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 16 Old 07-06-2013 Thread Starter
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Anchoring anywhere, anytime

I have my cruising guide out and I am looking at where I want to go today. It's getting a bit crowded here and I would like a weekend of solitude without having to go to a less than stellar place. Sure dont want to sit in the middle of nowhere being surly.

So I'm trying to find some little islands that don't hold many boats. Some of these say fair weather anchorage only. Ok, I've got fair weather. Its summer. The forecast for the week looks great, but what does fair weather mean exactly. When does an anchorage become dangerous.

I'm assuming that these are fair weather because thy don't offer protection from all directions. The one I'm looking at I think would be just me(n side patos) it's a small crescent. So since I'm liking my sleeping peacefully knowing I'm safe, im wondering if there is anything I need to worry about? Even if the wind picked up from the exposed side, these anchors are supposed to hold in almost hurricanes right? I can't imagine today would get above 15.

I'm also wondering if anchors, or a specific anchor holds in beach sand. So say you were going down the coast and wanted to anchor and surf, can you anchor outside the waves and go? It's deep but not too deep, since say 6-8 foot waves probably break in 6-10 feet of water, you could anchor in 15 feet.

If you can anchor in sand how good does it hold? Could you take it another step and just anchor at the beach overnight?
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post #2 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Anchoring anywhere, anytime

Anchoring on a beach with 8 ft waves would not be one of your better plans.

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post #3 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

What kind of anchor(s) do you have?
How heavy is it?
How much chain do you have?
How much rode?

I have seen sailboats anchor outside of the break in partially exposed waters like Lahaina - I believe some people call it a "Roadstead Anchorage".

Maybe OK for a short time. I imagine it would be not so relaxing overnight if there's any swell. If there was much wind and waves, you'd need 7:1 scope so you'd really have to anchor far beyond the break.

Didn't you recently anchor outside of Deception Pass with western exposure? Did that work out or do I recall you had to get out of there in the middle of the night?
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post #4 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

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Originally Posted by DRFerron View Post
Anchoring on a beach with 8 ft waves would not be one of your better plans.
Yep. It might turn out a lot like this....

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post #5 of 16 Old 07-06-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

I did anchor outside deception pass. In bowman bay.
It did suck.
Well the thing is, eventually I want to sail to remote surf spots. Lanaina is a good example and mala wharf north of there.

I wouldn't anchor in the waves but outside of them. Say you lived in Santa Barbara and wanted to go surf the ranch. It's a boat access only surf spot so people anchor there.

Mark it would be like anchoring alon the beeches in Texas. The sand beaches. Does it hold? Is there a certain kind of anchor that works best in sand only bottoms?
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post #6 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

I have read that sand and mud are the best types of bottoms for anchoring. I only have experience in mud.
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post #7 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

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Originally Posted by northoceanbeach View Post
I did anchor outside deception pass. In bowman bay.
It did suck.
Well the thing is, eventually I want to sail to remote surf spots. Lanaina is a good example and mala wharf north of there.

I wouldn't anchor in the waves but outside of them. Say you lived in Santa Barbara and wanted to go surf the ranch. It's a boat access only surf spot so people anchor there.

Mark it would be like anchoring alon the beeches in Texas. The sand beaches. Does it hold? Is there a certain kind of anchor that works best in sand only bottoms?
When anchoring here we have no issues to speak of as long as we are not too close to the shore, it is shallow a long way out and the swells can get very rough closer in shore. Since there really are not any good surfing locations here, or if the surf looks good it is because of an incoming hurricane LOL.

I have used a Danforth anchor with a 150' chain with an additional 150 of rode or a Bruce with the same, and have never been dragged. You should drop the anchor and let it settle a moment on the bottom then back down on it slightly and let out the proper scope. A properly set anchor will have no issues with the sand on the bottom with the proper chain and rode combination if you have the scope on it that you should. You will be able to tell if it is set properly when you back down on it, and if the engine will not drag it with a slight tension you should not have issues.

Just remember that the wind direction may change, and if it does you need to be aware. You definitely need a drag alarm on the GPS if you anchor relatively near shore where you have a breaking surf, unless you like midnight surfing onto the beach in your boat. Personally I would anchor somewhere where I was sheltered and take the dinghy to the place I wanted to surf.

Let us see some photos of your boat anchored in the surf, and the surf as well because those of us who are drilling for oil out here in the desert can only see waves in a bathtub or a puddle.

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post #8 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

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Originally Posted by northoceanbeach View Post
So say you were going down the coast and wanted to anchor and surf, can you anchor outside the waves and go? It's deep but not too deep, since say 6-8 foot waves probably break in 6-10 feet of water, you could anchor in 15 feet.
There are plentry of open roadstead anchorages and I commend you to learn about them by anchoring in deep water where the ships anchor outside port. Then as you get comfortable with the roll you will experience you can get closer to the surf beaches safely and comfortably.

Many city beaches may have anchoring rules and you may get buzzed by surf control people.

Certainly you wont be anchoring in 15 feet of water in 8 foot waves as you will be seasick (even I would be!); everything on every bench and in every cupboard would be pulverized, and most probably your anchor would be pulled out.
However there are techniques and places where the surf dudes on sailinig boats anchor. There havent been any on thise forum as far as I remember... but they must be out there. search Google for blogs and email people who do it all the time.

For an example look at Byron Bay in Australia, great surfing beach at 28 38.045'S 153 37.555'E you will see the peninsula that comes out givinf a protected anchorage and right in some excelent surfing. Also see the chart below... see the lilAnchor symbol? So you are allowed to anchor there!

the net must be full of such places, seach for cruisers who write them up!

Mark
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Last edited by MarkofSeaLife; 07-06-2013 at 09:06 PM.
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post #9 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

One of the places I want to go (many, many places) is to the atolls in the South Pacific, and the surfing there is fantastic. You go into the lagoon and anchor, in a sheltered cove, then surf on the beaches where the waves break. Beautiful water, beautiful beaches, and beautiful waves, not so beautiful passages into the lagoons, but slow and easy and cautious will get you into places where men rarely have even seen. I have a couple of friends who tease the crap out of me sending me little video clips from their adventures out there. The last one I got was only thirty seconds, and I watched it for about five minutes, they keep asking me to fly to Papeete and join them for a few weeks, but I cannot take more than a day or two off work until my contract is done here, but man I wish I could.

Happy surfing and send photos
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post #10 of 16 Old 07-06-2013
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Re: Anchoring anywhere, anytime

If you look on youtube you can see a bunch of videos from cruisers who will admit anchoring in shallow water and having the tide go out and leave them either hung at a horrible angle or on dry ground. Worth a look, and learning from their mistakes. If I can remember who posted it on youtube I will post it here.

It is good to learn from your mistakes, but much better to learn from the mistakes of others...
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