Sometimes people ask us what we do in case of storms. Well, first, we do what we can to avoid them. We plan our passages for times and places that historically have good weather. We avoid traveling in hurricane season and try to stack the odds in our favor by not taking undue risks with weather. When we anchor, we select a place that is protected from prevailing winds and waves to help keep us safe and sound.
All that being said, sometimes you wind up in a storm.
To keep us secure, we have big, heavy anchors. Lots of sailors will brag about how big their anchors are. It’s a sailor thing. But, in our case it’s true.
We carry three anchors, any of which will hold us in normal conditions. For really bad weather, we break out the big boy. This is a Luke 120 pound fisherman-style anchor and will hold us in anything imaginable. It disassembles for stowage which is a really good feature. There is no place on our boat where something this heavy and bulky can fit when all in one piece.
To go with the anchors, we have 290 feet of half-inch chain and 300 feet of 3/4 inch rode. (On a boat, everything has a name, and when rope is attached to anchor chain, it becomes “rode”.) Half-inch chain is HEAVY. Our 290 feet of chain weighs over 800 pounds by itself. Couple that with our selection of anchors and we should be secure in a blow.
We have an electric windlass to deploy the chain and anchors and then haul it back onto the boat. Life without a windlass would be difficult indeed!