How to anchor on a reef with Al McGlashan

Al McGlashan shares his tips on how to anchor on a reef, including where to anchor on the structure, dealing with currents and how much anchor line to let out.
Al McGlashan: When it comes to anchoring on reef, first thing you've got to do is put a reef anchor on. Now, I normally carry a plough anchor, so Tom's already changed it over. We're going to work up in here, I'm going to use the sounder to mark the reef and what I want to do is find a good edge. We're going to fish off the back of it for snapper. I reckon you can go up the front, Tom, you're on anchor duty. Like always, assess the situation. Work out which way the current's going or which way the wind's going. In this case there's not much wind, so you can see that we just marked a bit of reef there now. Tom's going to drop it down.

I'm going to go reverse, just to help him a bit. That helps to lay your chain out. Now you don't want a lot of chain, that's probably one hint worth mentioning, because the chain will then work in between the rocks. You want less chain or larger chain so it doesn't dig in quite as much. Tie her off and that's it. You can feel the boat pulling up on it, so obviously those four hooks have locked in, or two of them are probably locked in and are holding us nice and tight there. Now it's time to fish.

Once you've finished your fishing session, your boating session, whatever it is, and you want to pull your reef anchor up, unlike a plough anchor that you just pull up and physically drag out of the mud, the reef anchor's actually hooked in onto the reef so the best way to do it is drive off and that way you just bend your prongs out. Now, they're designed to bend. The key is you just got to remember the next time you go you have to bend them back in.