New Anchoring Technology Is Great…..But Don’t Get Rid of Your Anchor Yet
Who ever wrote that “necessity”, is the mother of invention was right when it can to inventing the latest small boat anchoring systems. A perfect example is the ability to hold a boat in a precise location in shallow water without disturbing the fish. The old way of securing the movement of your boat was slipping an anchor over the side and tying off the line. While that still works it’s noisy and subject to on deck tripping and the anchor breaking free and you finding yourself aground. It can also have an adverse impact on the bottom habitat and grasses. Staking off with a push pole does the job too, unless the bottom is hard-packed sand or oyster beds. That is why light tackle anglers now have several options to and quietly and quickly keep boats stationary to cast to easily spooked fish.
The first to enter the market of “spike anchor” technology was Power-Pole in 2010. Their system uses a hinged lightweight metal arm that extends down and away from a boat’s transom. A hydraulic pump drives the integrated fiberglass spike into the bottom to hold the boat in place. The line includes five different models designed for depths from four to 10 feet. To increase the hold capability many skinny water anglers are know mounting 2 systems on either side of the boat to provide even more security and increased pivoting if the need presents itself.
In more recent the arrival of trolling motors equipped with location locking GPS capability has become popular. Companies like Minn Kota seems to have taken the lead in that area of the stealth anchoring market. The trolling motor simply locks the location in place and adjust the position of the boat with the needed thrust and direction to keep the angler on the fish. This work especially well in deeper water or over a rocky bottom where the “spike system” cannot work. It can also serve as a backup propulsion system in the you boat engine problems. Both systems are silent and free the deck of a clanking anchor or hazardous anchor line or chain. Also you will probably never be faced with freeing your anchor system like the days of the anchor and line.
While the new anchoring systems have many benefits, don’t throw your anchor in the tool shed yet. There are times when the best of technology can fail and a backup can save your live. Keep that old anchor , chain and line in the anchor locker and make sure you continue to maintain it just in the event you need that rough day coming in the inlet. Or it could stabilize your boat in the event of a battery failure. Just like a compass, keep that anchor around just in case you just may need it in a pinch.