Bad anchoring practice.

OldBawley

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I had the most ?? bizarre ?? anchoring experience of my 35 years of anchoring.



The anchorage was very crowded, but having spent last two lock downs (almost 12 months combined) at that place I knew where I could put my boat for some days during a Meltem. The anchorage is not only crowded, it is a bad spot. Lots of debris on the bottom and since wind can not go trough a 300 meter high hill it goes around it. Unfortunately sometimes you get the gusts from west, seconds later from east. Still I had to be there, my anchor winch is not operating for the moment, not broken (it is a indestructible Simpson Laurence Seatiger ) but the chain gipsy totally worn down to the point the wheel is round. I have to lift the heavy Rocna by hand and I am old. So I needed shallow water and that spot in the anchorage was just right.

I arrive under engine, skirt the rocky shore, then head into the strong west onshore wind between two already anchored yachts. Both modern light displacement yachts, some 40 yards apart. I put my bow exactly between the two boats and ask the port yachts captain how much chain he has out. Just to be polite, since I am going to put my anchor just behind them and then fall back about 30 yards to the very limit of the rocky shore.

The guy answers, I don’t recall how much chain he said he had out because he claims his anchor is not in front of his boat but just where I am now, 20 yards to the side. ???

I don´t believe the guy, it simply is not possible with the strong wind, he just don’t want anyone around. So i fall back some 10 meters from where he was was pointing and drop the hook.

Now I was anchored between both yachts but about 40 yards behind them. Snorkelling to cheque my anchor and the surrounding for metal parts from a sunken ship, all is OK.

All is OK all day and most of the night. Strong gusts, mostly from west. Second part of the night the wind starts to fall and fluctuating from west to East. So I keep watch. Old man, don’t need a lot of sleep. Everything fine for me, the other boats in the anchorage have some bump in´s. Both yachts west of me are now very far off, they have a lot of scope out, they have electric winches.

Next morning with the rising of the sun the wind backs again to west and is gusty strong, forecast to get stronger. More yachts want to anchor in that spot, a 50 feet rental yacht filled with a lot of Russian speaking men anchors before me and ends up just between my fore- neighbours. That is not good. Fenders are out with them.

At five in the afternoon I was inside doing some laptop work when I see a yacht just 3 yards away.

I got out to find the yacht is the one who was in front of me, the guy is paying out more chain by hand. He wants to get away from his new Russian neighbors, prefers my compagny.

Now, that is not good. He ends up just next to me, and I inform him that I think the new situation is no good. He has a big lightweight yacht with lots of windage, my boat is small but twice the weight of his yacht and we have 15 m² of keel in the water, our boat is more submarine, no yawing at all.

He replies that I can go, he was here first.

He is correct, he was first in the anchorage, just not on that spot.

We had some words and he pulls in a few yards of chain, I let go some more. He now swings 3 yards in front of our 10 feet bowsprit. Sometimes far away, then passes in front to far away the other way. Balloon on the water.

And just when I am thinking of leaving he puts a suitcase generator on the skirt of his boat and starts making power. The stink been pressed down my forehach trough our wind scoop.

I then was so filled with anger adrenaline that I, old as I am pulled our 8 ton boat against the wind, broke the 15 kg Rocna out of the ground and on to deck.

I left, went some miles further to a spot I knew that had much wind but no waves and that would be empty.

That is, until the shit would start flying around and yachts would see me anchor there, flocking around my boat like sheep. Ahhh, some more weeks and we are alone again.
 
Last edited:

sailaboutvic

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I think you did the only thing you could do , up anchor and move .
We now live in a world with lots of novice sailors ,
(we can thank all the Nav aids on the markets ,)
Who have no idea how to skipper a boat , a week course for the ICC and they think they know it all .
 

noelex

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Usually in these situations it is better to just move if practical. Annoying, as although the rules are largely unwritten, my understanding is that you are correct. In a conflict situation the first boat generally has the "right of way", but if you want to substantially alter your swing circle and pattern by changing scope or adding extra anchors, you have a duty to make sure this does not cause conflict or danger to your neighbours who anchored after you arrived.
 

differentroads

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The best solution is to move, no matter how unreasonable or unjust it feels. That said, a couple of times I've stayed put just to be obstinate and woken a effwit neighbour up in the early hours with a few taps on their hull with my very long metal tipped boathook. But mostly I am the better man.

I console myself with the thought they usually have to go back to work in a week or two and I have a lifetime of full time messing around in my boat to look forward to.
 

differentroads

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I had the most ?? bizarre ?? anchoring experience of my 35 years of anchoring....
...That is, until the shit would start flying around and yachts would see me anchor there, flocking around my boat like sheep. Ahhh, some more weeks and we are alone again.
Yeah, its incredible how boat after boat must have passed an empty, uninviting looking anchorage until I decide to drop my pick there. Then in they come, often within three or four boat lengths in anchorages more than a mile wide. People, eh?
 

AndrewB

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Yeah, its incredible how boat after boat must have passed an empty, uninviting looking anchorage until I decide to drop my pick there. Then in they come, often within three or four boat lengths in anchorages more than a mile wide. People, eh?
We call it "cuddle-up".

A novice charterer comes in. "Oh f***, I bet he's a cuddler!"
 

noelex

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I did hear of a cruising sailor who kept a large sledgehammer on board. When someone anchored inappropriately he would politely question his new neighbour if they felt there was any danger of conflict. The answer was invariably "no".

At this point he would produce the sledgehammer and announce that was very reassuring, as he found the sledgehammer was the best tool for fending off other anchored boats :).

That is not my way of dealing with these conflict situations, but it is an amusing tale none the less.

One advantage of good quality anchoring gear is that it enables the use of deeper locations, shorter scopes and poorer substrates than would otherwise be feasible. This opens up anchoring spots that would otherwise be unusable. Even in very crowded anchorages these spots are nearly always left free and this makes moving easier.

In most anchoring conflict situations, moving is the best choice even if you have "right" on your side.
 

OldBawley

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An other anchoring ?????.

We have a few days of very little sun, some rain, and the sun is already low on the horizon so I decided it was a good time to build the second wind generator together and put it to work. The big “whopper” as I call the machine is a self made low wind speed generator that I only use when at anchor and when needed. Say in autumn and winter. The rest of the year he is not needed, we have solar and an Aerogen generator on top of the yawl mast. The big gen is then stowed. Easy done while I chose for a two bladed ( 1, 75 M ) wing witch stows easily between two deck beams in the forepart of the boat.

So I put the 2 yard high mast up, I am a bit not conventional so the big gen stands on the starboard rail of the bow, and whilst fixing the mast, three real big catamarans come and anchor nearby. They are paws, always together, and know what they do. They have experience and big good anchors. A rarity among hire catamarans.

So now, the big gen is “whopping”. Unfortunately I have a real wall of big plastic in front of our boat. So I put our whopper in front of the boat to have undisturbed wind, then are put behind a complete holiday village. In the old days, in Holland, it was not allowed to grow a three or build something 400 meter of a windmill.

This time, the fault is absolutely mine. I can always search a different anchorage.
 

BobnLesley

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I think you did the only thing you could do , up anchor and move .
We now live in a world with lots of novice sailors ,...Who have no idea how to skipper a boat , a week course for the ICC and they think they know it all .
It's nothing new, we first sailed into the Greek Islands almost twenty years ago and it was full of idiots and incompetents even then.
 

Bouba

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Anchoring etiquette was fine when there were few boats, now it’s every man for himself. I remember being first in a small anchorage (and to be honest I don’t put too much store on being first in except in Sainsbury’s car park). Then another boat arrives and puts down two anchors (not unknown in these parts where people want to be stern to the beach). Of course the wind changed and he starts complaining that I’m getting too close to him! Of course I was angry and all I offered for his comfort was to put out another fender.
It’s boating and to be honest I get hit a lot more in port where many still believe in crash landings
 

sailaboutvic

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It's nothing new, we first sailed into the Greek Islands almost twenty years ago and it was full of idiots and incompetents even then.
I bet you by a good ten years 😉.
Greece is probably the worst I ever found and the Ionian tops the list , probably because it attractive novice sailors .
And many charters who have very little experience in anchoring .
 

Bouba

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I had the most ?? bizarre ?? anchoring experience of my 35 years of anchoring.



The anchorage was very crowded, but having spent last two lock downs (almost 12 months combined) at that place I knew where I could put my boat for some days during a Meltem. The anchorage is not only crowded, it is a bad spot. Lots of debris on the bottom and since wind can not go trough a 300 meter high hill it goes around it. Unfortunately sometimes you get the gusts from west, seconds later from east. Still I had to be there, my anchor winch is not operating for the moment, not broken (it is a indestructible Simpson Laurence Seatiger ) but the chain gipsy totally worn down to the point the wheel is round. I have to lift the heavy Rocna by hand and I am old. So I needed shallow water and that spot in the anchorage was just right.

I arrive under engine, skirt the rocky shore, then head into the strong west onshore wind between two already anchored yachts. Both modern light displacement yachts, some 40 yards apart. I put my bow exactly between the two boats and ask the port yachts captain how much chain he has out. Just to be polite, since I am going to put my anchor just behind them and then fall back about 30 yards to the very limit of the rocky shore.

The guy answers, I don’t recall how much chain he said he had out because he claims his anchor is not in front of his boat but just where I am now, 20 yards to the side. ???

I don´t believe the guy, it simply is not possible with the strong wind, he just don’t want anyone around. So i fall back some 10 meters from where he was was pointing and drop the hook.

Now I was anchored between both yachts but about 40 yards behind them. Snorkelling to cheque my anchor and the surrounding for metal parts from a sunken ship, all is OK.

All is OK all day and most of the night. Strong gusts, mostly from west. Second part of the night the wind starts to fall and fluctuating from west to East. So I keep watch. Old man, don’t need a lot of sleep. Everything fine for me, the other boats in the anchorage have some bump in´s. Both yachts west of me are now very far off, they have a lot of scope out, they have electric winches.

Next morning with the rising of the sun the wind backs again to west and is gusty strong, forecast to get stronger. More yachts want to anchor in that spot, a 50 feet rental yacht filled with a lot of Russian speaking men anchors before me and ends up just between my fore- neighbours. That is not good. Fenders are out with them.

At five in the afternoon I was inside doing some laptop work when I see a yacht just 3 yards away.

I got out to find the yacht is the one who was in front of me, the guy is paying out more chain by hand. He wants to get away from his new Russian neighbors, prefers my compagny.

Now, that is not good. He ends up just next to me, and I inform him that I think the new situation is no good. He has a big lightweight yacht with lots of windage, my boat is small but twice the weight of his yacht and we have 15 m² of keel in the water, our boat is more submarine, no yawing at all.

He replies that I can go, he was here first.

He is correct, he was first in the anchorage, just not on that spot.

We had some words and he pulls in a few yards of chain, I let go some more. He now swings 3 yards in front of our 10 feet bowsprit. Sometimes far away, then passes in front to far away the other way. Balloon on the water.

And just when I am thinking of leaving he puts a suitcase generator on the skirt of his boat and starts making power. The stink been pressed down my forehach trough our wind scoop.

I then was so filled with anger adrenaline that I, old as I am pulled our 8 ton boat against the wind, broke the 15 kg Rocna out of the ground and on to deck.

I left, went some miles further to a spot I knew that had much wind but no waves and that would be empty.

That is, until the shit would start flying around and yachts would see me anchor there, flocking around my boat like sheep. Ahhh, some more weeks and we are alone again.
I take away two points from your story. First, if that’s the worst that’s happened in 35 years then we’ll done👍 And second, you have a Rocna👍👍👍 you are a man of good taste 😎😉
 

BobnLesley

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Greece is probably the worst I ever found and the Ionian tops the list...
I'd agree with that, US yachites in the Bahamas - especially up the northern end or around Georgetown - are on a par with the Saronic/Aegean, as are a lot of areas on the US east coast, oh and SW Turkey was perhaps the worst area for being screwed-over by 'professional' boats, but when it comes to everyday yachties screwing-up, the 1-onion's hard to beat. Florida has by far the most complete crazies, but those are generally in small mobos, so go aground on sandbanks well out of our way.
The frustration I found with US yachties was the varying comfort zone: If they're last into an anchorage, then the boat's length they're missing your bow by is 'fine, loads of room', but should they have arrived first, then anything anchoring within 50m of their bow is 'too damned close, you're sitting on my anchor'; I've long held that in any given anchorage you could fit twice the number of European yachts (3-4x if they were all French) as North American ones. ;)
 

sailaboutvic

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@Roberto sorry mate there gaps between the boats try anchoring anywhere around Malta in the summer ,
The boats are nearly touching , the only good part is come night they all go back to the marina , come first day light and there are back
 
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