Small, light and buoyant, a fishing kayak is at the mercy of the wind and current. To stop from blowing in circles and being swept away, anglers rely on a variety of boat-control devices. From anchors and trolleys to stakeout poles, automatic anchors and winches, here are the best ways to stop a kayak.
$49 | yakgear.com
If you fish shallow water, the quickest way to stop the kayak is with a stakeout pole. Drive the point of the pole into the sand or mud and tie off to hold the kayak in place. When you’re back on the move, flip the pole around and the wide foot is perfect for pushing the kayak across soft mud or sand. YakGear’s YakStick is six feet long, the right size to anchor in three to four feet of water. Add a Railblaza camera mount and the push pole becomes a convenient monopod. The nylon tip and foot will take the abuse of oyster bars and rocky bottom. A tie-off molded into the handle is perfect for attaching a tether. The sturdy pole is constructed out of tough and light pultrusion-formed fiberglass. Best of all, the YakStick floats.
LeverLoc Anchor Trolley
$35 | yakattack.us
Whether you’re anchoring or staking out, you’ll need an anchor trolley. After years of shadetree engineering, YakAttack designed the perfect anchor trolley. Combining their super smooth Stealth pulleys and a unique locking system, the LeverLoc Anchor Trolley is smooth and intuitive. We like the Padhook, a pad-eye with a hook, for guiding the line and maintaining tension. All parts of the LeverLoc come together to quickly and safely deploy an anchor.
K5 Kayak Canoe Anchor
$120 | tightlineanchor.com
At first look, spending $120 for an anchor may seem excessive, but Tightline Anchors promises, “This will be the last anchor you’ll buy.” The K5 grapnel anchor looks like Terminator brought it from the future. Built out of corrosion-resistant, high-grade stainless steel, the K5 uses an aggressive design to stick in mud, sand, rocks and grass. Rig the anchor with a release system and it will break away from the hang with a yank of the line. Like a Transformer toy turning from car to robot, the K5 folds on steel rivets to fit in a kayak hatch or under the seat. Weighing only 3.5 pounds, the Tightline Anchor is worth the weight savings.
Kayak Anchoring System
$149 | anchorwizard.com
Anchor Wizard has another approach to quickly and safely anchor the kayak. The Kayak Anchoring System uses a hand winch mounted near the kayak seat and a plastic tube on the bow or stern to deploy and retrieve the anchor. This system is stronger and more stable than a traditional anchor trolley, making it a favorite for river anglers pulling a drag chain out or rocks and wood. The winch keeps the anchor line organized so it is not lying loose on the deck where it could tangle or snag.
$599 | power-pole.com
When Power-Pole invented the Micro Spike Driver, kayak anglers entered the 21st century. Most motor-powered bass boats are rigged with a powered anchoring system. So, of course, kayak anglers want the convenience of stopping on a dime. The Micro fits on the stern with a self-contained battery and motor. Stick any ¾-inch stakeout pole into the driver and push a button to lower the stake into the sand, rocks or mud. Not only does the Micro stop the boat, but partially deployed, the pole works like a drift sock. Stopping the kayak with a push of a button is so convenient, many fishing kayaks are rigged for the system.
This article was first published in Kayak Anger Issue 44. Subscribe to Kayak Anger and get the magazine delivered to your front door. Download the Kayak Angler Magazine+ app to seamlessly glide between the digital archives, the latest articles and videos or browse the digital archives for your desktop here.
Stay put with the push of a button. | Feature photo: Jeffrey Fortuna