What Anchor is Best for Recreational Boats? (2023)

When most people think of boats, they rarely think of boat anchors. However, if you know a thing or two about boating or if you own a boat yourself, then you will understand how important boat anchors are even though they are so little in size.

Not only are boat anchors important, but it is also important to know what they are, how they work, and which boat anchor is the best for you. If you have been wondering “what anchor is best for recreational boats” then this is the article for you.

Let’s get started!

What Anchor is Best for Recreational Boats?

What Anchor is the Best for Recreational Boats? Why is that So?

Recommendation: If you are buying your first anchor, the best all-around anchor for a recreational boater is the FX Series Fortress, Aluminum Anchor.

Boat SizeAnchor Size
16′ to 27′ BoatRecommended Anchor
28′ to 32′ BoatRecommended Anchor
39′ to 45′ BoatRecommended Anchor
46′ to 51′ BoatRecommended Anchor
*make sure you are buying the FX model of Fortress Anchors

The FX Series Fortress Anchor is fantastics, but it also depends on what you need your anchor to do and the type of boating you do. Please keep reading because there may be a better anchor for your personal style of boating.

Anchors Recreational Boaters Should Consider

What is great about finding the “best” anchor for your boat is that the answer to that question depends on what you are looking for. For some that might make the process more frustrating but for others, the array of options makes it more fun.

Here are some of the best anchors for recreational boats that money can buy. Maybe you have heard of some of them and maybe there are a few on this list that you have not heard of before. Either way, you can rest assured that the anchors on this list are the best of the best.

Fortress Aluminum Anchor

  • First, on our list, we have the Fortress Aluminum Anchor. This is said to be one of the best, if not the best, anchor because it does not rust.
    • We know some people prefer to save the best for last but we disagree. The best should be shown first and we think you would agree if you have tried out the Fortress Aluminum Anchor.
    • Fortress Aluminum Anchors are made of the high-tensile aluminum-magnesium alloy which means that there are no welds to weaken the metal.
    • Fortress Aluminum Anchors are great because they are lightweight. However, do not let that fool you because Fortress Aluminum Anchors are very strong.
    • Fortress Aluminum Anchors have two adjustable shank angles. The 32-degree angle is to be used in the sand and the 45-degree angle to be used in soft mud.
    • Fortress Aluminum Anchors are a hit with anglers because they are easy to use, easy to handle, and easy to carry because of their weight.
    • Fortress Aluminum Anchors’ lightweight also helps minimize the load at the bow as well.

Delta Fast Set Anchor

  • Next on our list, we have the Delta Fast Set Anchor.
    • The Delta Fast Set Anchors
    • Delta Fast Set Anchors are also known as “single point anchors” or “scoops.”
    • Delta Fast Set Anchors offer the best, all-around holding ability despite the varying bottom conditions.
    • Delta Fast Set Anchors are best used on mud, grass bottoms, and even sand bottoms.
    • Delta Fast Set Anchors are also quite great on rocks and gravel bottoms well.

Danforth Standard Anchor

  • While Danforth Standard Anchors are quite large, they are also quite lightweight for their size. How lightweight the Delta Fast Set Anchors seem to surprise most anglers.
    • Danforth Standard Anchors can be stored flat.
    • The Danforth Standard Anchors hold well in both sand bottoms and mud.
    • Best of all, Danforth Standard Anchors base galvanized models are quite inexpensive.

Seachoice River Anchor

Greenfield Products Cast Iron Mushroom Anchor

  • The Greenfield Product Cast Iron Mushroom Anchor is very popular for smaller boats and they are also popular if you tend to take your boat in inland waters.
    • This is due to the Greenfield Product Cast Iron Mushroom Anchor’s unique mushroom shape. The mushroom-shaped anchors are made of cast iron which means they tend to depend on their weight to hold a boat in place. While this is happening, their cap digs into the soft and or to give you a more secure grip.
    • Greenfield Product Cast Iron Mushroom Anchors come in five to fifteen pounds.
    • Greenfield Product Cast Iron Mushroom Anchors are designed to be used on boats that are around ten to sixteen feet in length.
    • Greenfield Product Cast Iron Mushroom Anchors come in an array of options including painted anchors, plain anchors, and of course vinyl-coated anchors.

What Anchors Do I Use On My Boat?

These anchors described above are all popular with recreational boaters. I personally boat along the coast and I maintain two anchors on my boat.

My boat comes with a windlass (mechanical device to raise and lower an anchor) on the bow. With the windlass I have a heavy Delta Fast Set Anchor (#2 on the list above). It has great holding power and is quite heavy.

The windlass makes retrieval easy vs having to hoist the anchor in by hand. If I were doing it by hand, I would definitely use a Fortress Aluminum Anchor due to its light weight and strong holding power.

What Anchor is Best for Recreational Boats?

When we double anchor at a sandbar or along the beach to hand out with friends, we use the bow anchor (Delta style) and then back the boat up to the sandbar and set a stern anchor.

For a stern anchor we currently use a Danforth style anchor. The Danfort style anchor has very good holding power and due to its design it is easy to hold while getting off the boat to set the anchor.

However, I want to switch out the heavy Danforth anchor for a new FX Series Fortress Aluminum Anchor. The weight difference is significant. I was recently introduced to the Fortress brand of anchor and it is now my go to anchor.

Get this! The FX-7 model weighs just 4 pounds and holds a 16′ to 27′ boat! If you routinely anchor up at a sandbar with a stern anchor and have to carry an anchor while trying to get on the back of your boat, this is an absolute game changer!

Have you ever tried to swim while holding a 14 pound anchor? Not easy is it. Swimming with a 4 pound anchor is a much safer situation.

Recommendation: If you are buying your first anchor, the best all around anchor for a recreational boater is by far the FX Series Fortress Aluminum Anchor.

Boat SizeAnchor Size
16′ to 27′ BoatRecommended Anchor
28′ to 32′ BoatRecommended Anchor
39′ to 45′ BoatRecommended Anchor
46′ to 51′ BoatRecommended Anchor
*make sure you are buying the FX model of Fortress Anchors

Common Frequently Asked Questions about Boat Anchors

What is an Anchor?

  • This may sound like a silly question but you would be surprised that most people do know exactly what an anchor is.
    • To put it simply, an anchor is a weighted and heavy object that connects a vessel to the seabed.
    • Anchors hold the vessel in place and without it, nothing is keeping the vessel from free-floating away.
    • An anchor is usually attached to a boat by using a combination of cable, chains, or rope.
    • Back before anchors were made specifically for their intended use, people used whatever heavy items they can find. Those items include logs loaded with lead, sand, and heavy stones and rocks. 

How is an Anchor Able to Hold a Giant Boat?

  • This is a good question and quite an interesting one as well.
    • Anglers drop anchors down to the bottom of the water first. Afterward, the heavyweight of the anchor will cause them to sink. The flukes on the anchor will then dig into the bottom.
    • When anglers are anchoring, their boats will drift slightly due to the waves and water. When this happens, the angler will usually reverse their recreational boat gently in order to apply pressure to the anchor.
    • By doing this, it will cause the anchor to dig deeper into the sea bottom and also cause more resistance.
    • This in turn will provide much more stability as well as keep the boat in place.

What are Some Aspects to Consider Before Buying an Anchor?

  • You should consider the anchor material before buying an anchor.
    • Anchors are not made of just one material.
    • Anchors are often made of steel, stainless steel, or aluminum.
    • You should consider what kind of anchor rode you want before buying an anchor.
    • You should consider the condition of the seabed that you will most likely be in before buying an anchor.
      • This is extremely important but there is no one size fits all anchor, unfortunately.
      • You cannot use the same anchor on a rocky bottom as you would on with a more muddy bottom. Well, you can, but that might not be the best idea.
      • Different anchors were made for different seabeds. It is not worth it to save money by buying just one anchor and hoping it will work for all different seabeds because you will soon regret this.
      • For example, if you are anchoring in a more rocky sea bottom then you will want an anchor with claws and so forth.
      • It must advise having more than one anchor.

The Takeaway | Why Boat Anchors are Important

When it comes to anchors you want to ensure that you have one that you like. This is because, compared to your boat, it might seem like a lot but anchors are not inexpensive. You want to ensure that you have one that you like and are willing to invest in.

We hope that you found one that you liked on this list and if you did, please consider writing a blog post or leaving a review on that certain anchor (or if you like more than one and would recommend more than one) so other anglers will be able to read those reviews as well.

Happy boating!