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Old 30-06-2016, 04:18   #31
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

I love/hate mornings as the sun comes up is the boat is swinging in and out of the shade/sun. If it was a chilly night as the boat swings into the sun I love that warm cozy feeling. An hour late I was the boat to stay in the lessening shade as now it gets too warm.

The water slapping on the hull makes a soothing sound until one of the slurps sounds odd. Then I go sit out and watch the day get started.

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Old 30-06-2016, 06:07   #32
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

Love swinging from my anchor most of the time. Obviously and rightfully nervous when storms are raging all around, and the wind is whipping up, but most of the time I sleep far better on the hook than tied to a dock. The rhythm of the boat just feels right.

If things are a bit boisterous I will do the visual check overnight, often associated with the old-man-pee-run, but most of the time I don't even do this. In fact, I often wear earplugs. Most of the time I anchor quite close to shore. If we let go it's unlikely I'd catch it in time, so I figure I'd rather be well rested to deal with any problems rather than fret all night about what might happen.

BTW, we've never dragged onto anything hard, nor into anyone. It will probably happen eventually, but if you learn to anchor well, with good gear, you will sleep well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
The bigger problem we encounter is when some knucklehead decides to lay out 1:15 scope in a small anchorage with light to no wind. Like last night, then I wake up this morning nose to tail with his 60ft catamaran.

Wondering what I did wrong?
Funny. I had this happen to us just a few nights ago. Came into a smallish anchorage with this 26' Magregor (no mast, no water ballast loaded) sitting right in the middle. 8 feet of water. We draw 6' so couldn't get in deeper, but no problem, we find an edge and lay out 40', which is 5:1 and probably overkill anyway. That's when my 'friend' calls over (growls over) saying "I HAVE 80 FEET OUT!!!" That's 10:1, basically taking up the whole anchorage. Thanks buddy.
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Old 30-06-2016, 06:23   #33
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

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Originally Posted by AFKASAP View Post
About 2 months ago the thought of spending the night at anchor did not apeal to me to say the least. I had never anchored overnight before and I was wondering how I would manage to sleep. Or even if I should sleep.

It takes a good dollop of faith in your anchor and the way you have set it to have a good night sleep.

Since arriving in the Med about 40 days ago, 35 nights have been at anchor. I have to say it is sooo amazing to be able to choose your anchoring spot and spend the night (for free). Oh the space and tranquillity. It has opened up a whole new aspect of sailing.

Now we only visit marinas when we run out of fresh water.

I still wake up sometimes and look out of my cabin window and panic if i see we have swung 180 degrees. I panic even more if I cannot make out which direction we are facing. I am thinking of sleeping with a compass

How about you guys? Are there some nervous sleepers out there? Or are you all completely relaxed?
Being a nervous sleeper at anchor is a sign of good seamanship!!

Even after thousands of nights at anchor, I can't sleep entirely as well as when I am securely tied to a dock.

However, I can share with you a few tips to make it easier:

1. Have good ground tackle. I won't make this an anchor thread by going into the choice of it, but be sure you've thought it through and have a really well designed system in all respects.

2. "Good ground tackle" mean even more than the right design of the system, flawless condition of it. So make sure you inspect it often, especially the shackle or whatever you use to join the chain to the anchor. Make sure that the chain is firmly attached to the boat by some link (strop, chain lock) which is as strong as the chain.

3. Be sure your technique is good, and you can recognize different bottoms types, know how much scope you need, know when the anchor is really set, etc. But there is one excellent way to check whether you've done it right -- full power in reverse for several minutes after you think you've set the anchor. This is the acid test. Unless you're snagged on something, if you pass this test, the anchor will not move during the night either.

4. Have a good anchor alarm of some kind or another.

5. Avoid having to get up out of your bunk and stick your head out, by having some kind of nav device next to your bunk. I used an IPad with INavX for years (has a decent anchor alarm); now a waterproof Android tablet controlling my plotter via GoFree. I set it so that the screen doesn't blank out, then cover it with a shirt or something. This is important for good sleep because it means if you wake up feeling nervous, you can check your position without getting out of bed, reducing the risk that you will have to wake up fully and have trouble getting back to sleep. A power point next to your bunk is really useful to keep this device charged during the night. A DC one if you don't want to leave your inverter running all night.

6. Have good shelter and be sure you know what way the wind could swing during the night. Don't ask me how I learned this lesson

7. Pre-plan your escape route in case you have to bug out. Study the chart and know the rocks and other obstacles around. Leave the key in the ignition and nav gear running. Lay out your clothes next to your bunk.

8. I really bad weather you might need to put someone on anchor watch.



Knocking on wood while writing this, but I haven't dragged an anchor now in probably 10 years. I still sleep with one eye open, however.
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Old 30-06-2016, 07:01   #34
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

This is about lake anchoring, not in the ocean but I think the story fits.

We sail colorado mountain lakes and the weater can turn nasty at any time. On this boat we don't have electronuc gear but a radio. Anything else is not needed. No anchor alarm or gps etc.

Anyway on this one occassion we were coming in lateish to our anchorage when a suddlen gale hit us. No windex on our boat so I dont know how high the winds were, but high enough that we were heeling about 15 -20 with no sails up. The rains then started and, though we know the area, the lake rises considerably in the soring with run off. So we were a little uncertain about our holding. We put out a stern anchor and the bow anchor, but because of the shifting winds we ran an extra line to shore.

Only, there was nothing to tie to. We ended up piling rocks on the line in the driving rain and wind. Still the wind kept shifting and gaining and the lake kept rising. Without an anchor alarm we worried about dragging. Finally we tied a white rag to the shore line so we coul gauge our position against the shore.

It worked, we did drag a little but we caught and held the rest of the night.
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Old 30-06-2016, 07:14   #35
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
The bigger problem we encounter is when some knucklehead decides to lay out 1:15 scope in a small anchorage with light to no wind. Like last night, then I wake up this morning nose to tail with his 60ft catamaran.

Wondering what I did wrong?
It now appears I was wrong, he in fact had over 300 feet of chain deployed with a depth of only 18ft. The knuckleheads just picked up their anchor and moved further out. Thank goodness. Now I can take in some of mine which was let out each time they came closer.
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Old 30-06-2016, 09:27   #36
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

Two things, I Always set an anchor alarm and I keep a hand held next to berth with volume set low on ch 16.

Two points. I set the alarm rather narrow when first arriving. It will go off (or not) after a few minutes as we settle in then I'll make it a bit wider. About three times then it's generally good.

The hand held (not the ships vhf a the antenna is much higher and greater chance of snoozing interruption) works in most places that are not insanely crowded like Georgetown.

If in the middle of the night someone nearby is in trouble you'll have a chance to help. I woke up one morning long ago at Gun Cay and all that was left of neighbors boat was the mast sticking up. Had I been on the radio could have really helped :-(

There you go, the Ohana 2 step :-)
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Old 30-06-2016, 11:21   #37
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

You have discovered one of the many joys of cruising because you are gaining trust in your ability to anchor, and in your ground tackle.

I typically slept well at anchor, but always with a heightened level of situational awareness.

On prior boats in the days before GPS [and then for a time, dithered GPS...] and hence no anchor alarms, a tell-tale compass was somewhat handy to help with orientation when awakened at anchor and during a passage.

Today I set 2+ separate anchor alarms [Always Drag Queen and Vesper AIS, and if within cell coverage, our vessel monitoring system].

I also have a tablet with built-in GPS running navigation software next to my berth.

If expecting weather or vessel traffic, or if either occur unexpectedly, I set zone alarm(s) on the RADAR [our 4G consumes very little power...] to warn of my or other boats encroaching on my comfort zone. The RADAR image is also viewable on the tablet next to my berth...

I also broadcast our position on AIS 24/7 when away from the dock. The Vesper allows us to tune alarm thresholds for different scenarios, so while at anchor we don't have any distant vessel alerts waking us up- only potential close encounters...

To enhance our vessel's visibility while at anchor in the dark, in addition to the masthead anchor light, we also deploy 2 additional anchor lights about 7 feet above the deck on the bow and stern. The first thing we do if there is vessel traffic encroaching on our safe zone in the dark is turn on our two LED deck lights [we are a ketch- one on each mast...] We have a switch next to our berth.

I can also sound the air horn [and a klaxon] from my cabin if necessary if a quick wake-up call is warranted for another vessel... [Set up by the previous owner for intruder security.]

All of these modern electronics consume so little power that I don't hesitate to avail myself of their charms when needed.

We also post anchor watches in times of concern regardless of reason, and I check the physical world anytime I have a 'feeling' [What was that?] or am up for any other reasons...

Since we 'live' in our pilothouse while at anchor, we are always very aware of our surroundings. And if nervous, I can sleep there and with just a sit-up, quickly glance at everything around me.

Always anchoring as if it will blow 60 kts with excellent, proven ground tackle, with a selection of electronic aids to back-up to physical monitoring enhance our level of relaxation and comfort at anchor. [And we are typically the only boat at anchor where we are exploring these days...]

Enjoy your new found comfort and sleep well, but with awareness!

Cheers!

Bill
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Old 30-06-2016, 11:25   #38
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

Iíve just posted an article on my boat website describing a method of anchoring I have used for nearly fifty years, and which was published in last February edition of Good Old Boat magazine. It offers a great amount of added confidence and peaceful nights. See A drag proof method of anchoring or go to the site and click on anchoring. JR
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Old 30-06-2016, 11:37   #39
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolly Roger View Post
Iíve just posted an article on my boat website describing a method of anchoring I have used for nearly fifty years, and which was published in last February edition of Good Old Boat magazine. It offers a great amount of added confidence and peaceful nights. See A drag proof method of anchoring or go to the site and click on anchoring. JR
Lying to two CQR anchors as a drag-proof anchoring method -- now that will stimulate some discussion. . . .

I only have one question -- what happened to the kellet which was described with such approval in the first part of the article?
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Old 30-06-2016, 11:42   #40
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

This is off the subject but I wanted to make a post and can't find where to do it. I own a MacGregor 25 and have been a lake sailor in So Cal. Now that I am retired my plans are to head to the Gulf of Mexico and sail the Keys and Bahamas. my only ocean experience was in my Prindle 16 cat sailing in regattas. Any advice?
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Old 30-06-2016, 11:43   #41
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolly Roger View Post
Iíve just posted an article on my boat website describing a method of anchoring I have used for nearly fifty years, and which was published in last February edition of Good Old Boat magazine. It offers a great amount of added confidence and peaceful nights. See A drag proof method of anchoring or go to the site and click on anchoring. JR
Roger,

I read your article.

The trouble with your "drag proof" method, is when someone like me comes along and anchors next to you.... totally and completely unaware of all the **** you've placed on the bottom to secure your boat, and to entangle other boats.... without regard for other boaters. Your swing will also be substantially different than all other boats in the anchorage creating many headaches for people who've done a proper and expected job deploying the correct amount of scope.

You are the source and creator of problems.

Example from today:

Notice the large empty area in the middle of the anchorage? Well it's there because the inconsiderate idiot in the green pirate ship has deployed nearly 300ft of rode in a 15ft deep anchorage. Now notice the cluster f&@k that's about to happen with the two unsuspecting boats he's about to make verbal an physical contact with.....

I'm sure he thinks his is also a "drag proof method of anchoring" just so long as everyone else gets out of his way.
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Old 30-06-2016, 12:15   #42
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

I hate it when one of my threads gets highjacked, so I wonít get involved in responses to my article. I just offered it to AFKASAP as an alternative and secure way to spend the night.
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Old 30-06-2016, 12:22   #43
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

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I hate it when one of my threads gets highjacked, so I won’t get involved in responses to my article. I just offered it to AFKASAP as an alternative and secure way to spend the night.
If you feel like discussing it, don't worry about "hijacking". The moderators will separate the conversation into a separate thread, if it starts to overwhelm the original topic. If you don't feel like it, that's also ok. Thanks for the link in any case.
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Old 30-06-2016, 12:28   #44
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

I wonder if the people who say they always sleep with an anchor alarm on are really comfortable with their anchoring?

I loaded an anchor alarm app to my phone one day and set it for 100 feet, there I walked all the way down the block without it alarming. Wouldn't help me sleep any!
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Old 30-06-2016, 12:37   #45
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Re: Getting comfortable with anchoring is really liberating

Love being on the anchor - one of the most enjoyable things about boating. I almost never sleep well on anchor the first night unless I know the anchor is well set in gin clear water and we have been though a current change or two. The next night a little better and so forth.

Mostly I am paranoid about theft. Having had our dinghy stolen right off the back of our boat has put me on guard for the last two years.

I also get a little paranoid the first few nights in an anchorage if its crowded and I almost never sleep well when we are in restricted swing room. If its real bad, my wife and I will take shifts at night. We have slowly become more confident with our anchoring; more faith in our anchor and more faith in our skills selecting the right anchoring spot.

A couple of things have improved our sleep:

1) Getting better at selecting anchoring spots
2) Having an electric windlass and using it to quickly move spots when needed
3) Have a marital agreement that if either one of us is not happy with the spot we move
4) Have better anchor arrangement itself (better launching and retrieving)
5) Better marital communication during anchoring without using "marriage savers" (although those are helpful in picking up moorings in tight fields).
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