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Are you held fast?

If you care about your boat weathering the storms and/or care about your neighbors on sea and land getting smashed or sunk by your runaway vessel, you’ll need to check your groundtackle on a yearly basis.

Actually, even if you don’t care, you need to check your groundtackle yearly, because you live in a community and your actions impact others.

Learning how to properly anchor your vessel to prevent catastrophe can be like learning a new language, and it can be confusing. Adding to this, ask 10 mariners, and you’ll get 10 different answers.

We’ve learned that in the Anchorage Association meetings that if you want to derail a topic for 20 minutes, just say something controversial about anchoring technique.


  1. 1.    Practice proper seamanship.

  2. 2.    If you don’t know what you are doing, and feel confident, ask for help from someone that knows.

  3. 3.    Your groundtackle must be appropriate for your boat.

  4. 4.    Groundtackle must not be caught up in the weeds and eelgrass.

  5. 5.    Danforth anchors are appropriate for the mud and clay of Richardson Bay. For instance 40’ boat, 40lb Danforth.

  6. 6.    A 2 anchor system is recommended, 1 from south, one from NW.

  7. 7.    10:1 ratio. 

  8. 8.    5/16” or greater chain, as appropriate for your vessel. Grade BBB, G3, G4, or greater.

  9. 9.    100’ chain minimum per anchor.

  10. 10.  Coming up to a swivel, then 20-30’ heavy chain, and 10’ 1” rope and chafing gear.

  11. 11.  Groundtackle is maintained at a minimum yearly basis, and inspected by a qualified diver, prior to storm season.

  12. 12.  Chafing gear is set up coming off the pendant going to your boat.

  13. 13.  Properly seized shackles.

  14. 14.  All your groundtackle gear in is good condition.

How’s your groundtackle?

Outlined here are some guidelines for recognized and proven anchoring practices for the Richardson Bay.

If you need help with assessing or setting your ground tackle, finding a qualified diver,

or need help purchasing key anchoring materials, you can reach out to the BoatSavers.

Diagrams to come...

Original text © 2016

All rights reserved. Contact for use permission.


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