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BEST KAYAK ANCHOR KIT – INTRO
Setting up a kayak anchoring system can be a tough job, especially if you don’t have experience, and even worse if you don’t have the right product. Your best kayak anchor kit option will contain all the essentials you need to install and maintain your kayak anchoring system. Once properly installed, it will last you for many years to come!
Not familiar with this piece of kayak fishing gear? Be sure to check out our Kayak Anchor Kit Ultimate Guide before reading this post!
Best Kayak Anchor Kit – Overview
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To help you understand kayak anchor kits just a little bit better, I’ve compiled this guide. I’ve divided it up into various sections to facilitate easy and quick reading – this should allow you to spend less time reading the guide, and more time out on the water using the anchor to your advantage!
The first section covers with the basics of these kits, including what you’ll find in a typical anchor kit, what it is typically made of, a little bit about its history and typical use, and so forth.
Next, I’ve included a section covering how you can install your own kayak anchor kit to your fishing kayak. This is done via an easy to follow “checklist” that should serve you as a quick referenced guide.
After that, I’ve listed down all the essential features to look out for when buying a kayak anchor kit. If the kayak anchor kit that you are evaluating has each of these features, you can rest assured that you’ll be happy with its performance on the water!
Next, I’ve linked to my favorite kayak anchor kit. Frankly, I have little doubt that its the Best Kayak Anchor Kit on today’s market thought, candidly, there are some relatively close offerings in 2nd place. I love it for its versatility and quality. If you want to read about my thoughts on it, scroll down to the “My Experience” section.
So without any further ado, let’s begin with the guide!
Related: Interested in kayak fishing when the temperatures turn cooler? Check out our guide on Kayak Fishing in Cold Weather!
Parts of a Kayak Anchor
Best Kayak Anchor Kit – Basics
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Anchoring is a crucial step towards safe and easy, not to mention highly effective, kayak fishing! Anglers use kayak anchors to sit still in a good spot where there are lots of fish. And sea kayakers use it for both fishing and recreation.
A kayak anchor kit is your top most solution to an anchoring system. It contains everything you’ll need in order to ground yourself for fishing. These kits typically contain an anchor, an anchor trolley, an anchor pole, and the necessary installation hardware.
When deciding on an anchor kit, be sure to check the type of anchor it provides. Grapnel anchors are most common, but Danforth and Northill anchors are popular too. You’ll see some made of heavy metal, some of durable plastic, some with prongs, some that are collapsable, and so on and so one. There is a TON of variety in anchor type – especially in the kayak fishing world!
Also, consider the anchor trolley system. An anchor trolley is a network of ropes and pulleys that lets you adjust your anchor from the front of your kayak to the back. Think of this system like the tendons attached to your muscles. The trolley is a “connector” of sorts!
Also typically included is an anchor pole, which is basically just a short kayak paddle or pole, usually 6 to 7 feet in length, that lets you anchor in really shallow water. It’s great for anchoring near reeds and small cliffs and crevices. They are typically designed to be thrusted into he soft direct of a water bottom, acting as an artificial tree or branch to which to anchor!
Side Note: If you are here, you are looking to bring your kayak fishing game to the next level. Learn how a Kayak Seat Pad can keep you comfortable on the water for longer! We have even written a review on the year’s Best Kayak Seat Pad!
How to Install Best Kayak Anchor Kit
Getting your kayak anchor kit setup CAN be difficult since you need to set up the entire trolley – but don’t worry, we have seen very inexperienced kayak fishermen get there anchor kit set up in under 20 minutes. Here’s how you can do so (in conjunction with following your user’s guide, of course):
- Identify the parts of the trolley. Don’t lose any small pieces or mounting hardware!
- The trolley should consist of the trolley line, pad-eyes, pulleys, a cleat, a ring, and some well nuts.
- If you have access to the inside of the casing of your kayak, then follow this procedure.
- Drill a 5/32 inch hole through the casing and place the nut inside.
- Then place your pulley on the hole of the well nut and screw it in.
- Repeat for the other pulley on the other side of the kayak (ideally one on the stern and one on the bow).
- If you don’t have inside access, simply drop the well nuts into the drilled holes from the outside.
- Next, install the pad-eyes, visualizing them as a guide for the main trolley line.
- The cleat needs to be installed by winding the trolley line through it.
- Once you’ve passed the rope through the pulleys, pad-eyes, and the cleat, tie the two ends to the ring.
- Now attach one end of the anchor line to a suitable place on your kayak.
- Pass the other end through the ring and tie it to the anchor.
- And now you’re all set up!
Side Note: If you liked this checklist, you might also like our checklist on How to Use Kayak Outriggers or How to Use a Kayak Fishing Net (we have even written a review on the year’s Best Kayak Fishing Net)!
Best Kayak Anchor Kit – Important Considerations
First up, consider the design and working of your anchor. In this regard, there are two types of anchors permanent and temporary. Permanent anchors are not what you’re looking for in smaller watercrafts such as a kayak (they are typically found in large, power boats).
Instead, you want to go for a temporary anchor with a “grapnel” design. The grapnel design features four flukes that dig into concrete rock formations and keep your kayak stationary. The flukes are usually retractable, making for easy storage, but this is not ALWAYS the case, so be sure to consider that when evaluating anchors.
There is another design called the “Northie” temporary anchor. This design will require more time and effort to find a decent anchoring point. And not to mention that Northill anchors aren’t very stable. Not going to be your best bet for kayak fishing!
If you’re fishing in shallow depths, consider a “Danforth” anchor. This anchor is quite a bit easier to deploy and use. And it reduces weight on your hands quite dramatically. As you might expect, this kind of anchor is also far easier to lift from the water when you are finished fishing a particular area!
Scope of the Anchor
The scope of the anchor refers to how much line is required to safely deploy it. This doesn’t include the line used in the anchor trolley, and it usually comes with the anchor you’re using. Now what scope you should get really depends on how shallow or deep the water is. But certain types of anchors will require more rope as compared to others.
For instance, a grapnel anchor doesn’t require too much rope. However, a Danforth anchor needs to be at least 30 degrees to the horizontal in order to get a good grip. You would be well suited to educate yourself about the different types of anchor design and the different pros and cons that each would have with respect to your kayak fishing experience!
Anchor Trolley Considerations
Along with an anchor, your kayak anchor kit will also include an anchor trolley. If you don’t already know, from our discussion about tendons and muscles above, an anchor trolley is a setup of ropes that “cradle” your anchor line. This makes the anchor line more stable and prevents your kayak from moving to and fro – a very important ability, especially when you are kayak fishing in swiftly moving waters or are experiencing gusty winds!
A kayak anchor trolley also helps you move your anchor line from one point of the kayak to the other. This makes it best for sea kayakers who need to shift the anchoring point with respect to the wind and tide. Of course, sea kayakers aren’t along when it comes to needing to re-adjust from time to time. Tons of “lake bound” kayak fishermen benefit from the same feature!
In your kayak anchor kit, assuming you have picked a top notch model, you will get a horde of accessories along with the main anchor and trolley. The most prominent (at least in terms of size) of these is the anchor pole! An anchor pole is a 7-foot long pointed shaft that you stick into the bed of a shallow river or lake.
An anchor pole is only made for shallow parts of the water. And they can’t be used for water beds that are deeper than 7 feet. They are basically designed to mimic a dock post or a tree limb where you can find neither on the water. In that way, the anchor pole is a replacement of sorts – a very handy feature for anchoring in the shallows!
Along with that, you’ll likely get a buoy that is attached to the anchor line. The buoy will help the anchor line float to the top in the case that it comes loose. They are often colored in a bright shade to make the buoy stand out a bit against the dark water – helping you locate your line with ease!
Anchor Kit Storage
Finally, consider how you’re going to store the anchor kit. Generally speaking, storage shouldn’t be too difficult – but you shouldn’t disregard it or allow it to be an afterthought. Your anchor trolley will be more or less permanent on the side of your kayak. It’s not recommended to remove it, as reinstalling is quite difficult.
As for the anchor and anchor line, that too will be attached to some point on your kayak. You can safely remove it and wind it up to store it. Some anchors, as we described above, are foldable. If the product came with a carry bag, use that to store the components – just make sure that you have allowed everything to fully dry out prior to storing away – this will prevent the formation of mildew or mold!
Buy the Best Kayak Anchor Kit
In terms of having wide functionality on various water bodies, this is the best kayak anchor kit on today’s market. It includes everything you need to set up your anchor trolley, including the screws and the cleats. This is an all-in-one kayak anchoring kit where everything you need is in one place. The all inclusive nature is a HUGE time saver in terms of preventing the need for you to go to and from the hardware store looking for the right parts!
It uses a bright red grapnel anchor. This anchor weighs 3 pounds and is easily visible in water bodies of moderate depth. Grapnel anchors are the best as they are lightweight and are easier to lower and haul up. This is a nice weight size for fishing kayaks, as well, as they are more light weight than their motor powered cousins – power boats!
What’s more, is that this anchor comes with 30 feet of scope. Ideal for use in both shallow and deep waters. It’s a temporary anchor and it may not survive the current of the sea – at least for any extended period of time. But yes, the length of the rope can be a better option for sea kayaking – just make sure to be aware of your depths and the strain that the current or tide might be putting on your set up!
The anchor line also features an adjustable buoy. When anchoring, you would want to use a very long rope as per requirement. Adjusting the buoy to the right length will let you lower the right amount of rope. And it will also make retrieving the rope easier. You won’t need to reel and reel line that, ultimately, didn’t aide you in your anchoring effort!
Alongside that, you get an intricate trolley system with all the necessary hardware included (remember how we talked about staying away from the hardware store?)! This kit contains three pad-eyes. You also get the necessary screws, a zig-zag cleat, and a ring to pass the anchor line through – this is everything you need to make the proper installation.
With the anchor and trolley, you also get a 7-foot long 3-piece anchor pole made from fiberglass. The 3-piece feature is highly useful as it makes storage easier, which is always a concern with storing anchor poles, especially for those who like to store their poles in the relatively confined space of the kayak’s hull!
So, you get 30 feet of scope for deep water, and an anchor pole for shallow water. This is what makes the showcased model the best kayak anchor kit on today’s market! It appeals to every type of kayaker, whether you’re a sea kayaker or an angler.
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When I used this kayak anchor kit, I was immediately taken aback by the quality and efficacy of the bundle. It contained everything I needed as a kayak fishermen (really, it included FAR more than I needed and I was completely prepared for any number of anchoring challenges). I liked the addition of the anchor pole for anchoring down in shallow water. If you ask me, shallow water is the best place to look for fish, especially near reeds and rocks.
However, be aware as the rope is attached to the anchor. So you can’t switch out the rope easily. If you do decide to switch it out, make sure you replace it with a nylon rope of appropriate grade (strength) and length!
If you’re still curious, here are my thoughts summarized
- Great for both deep and shallow water (due to the different components included for each situation).
- Components are highly visible in the water (red coloration)
- The trolley is stable (good for changing directions when needed)
- Installation is quick and simple.
- Anchor pole can break down into several pieces for easy storage!
- Rope cannot be switched out (of course, you can cut it, but it isn’t otherwise “removable”, per se).
So there you have it! My ultimate guide for kayak anchor kits, including my opinion on the best kayak anchor kit of the year! I hope you liked the guide as I put in a lot of work and research into it – coupled with my own experiences and opinions!
If you were to ask me, I would definitely suggest the best kayak anchor kit that I linked to above. It’s highly versatile and has the easiest installation I’ve ever seen. I like it for how neat and well-contained the entire kit is. Yes, there are others on the market, but I think you’ll be equally as happy with this model as I have been!
Have you tried my recommendation before? How did it turn out for you? Was it good or did you find it lacking any specific application? Also, if you have liked it, what exactly was it that stood out? And would you recommend it to a friend? Please share with us by posting on the Comments board below! We read and reply to every comment and LOVE interacting with the kayak fishing community!