Getting your anchor snagged by somone – or snagging someone else’s anchor – is a common occurence in crowded Mediterranean docks and harbours.
Often it is not even your fault.
The yacht in the photo above, taken on Poros in 2023, hit the wall hard about a minute later causing serious damage despite a dozen people trying to push her off (it was blowing 20 knots onshore). If they had known how to fix this problem then they would have saved their holiday and their yacht.
Would you be able to fix a snagged anchor if (when?) it happened to you?
I was taught the solution last year quite near Poros, on Epidavros (see right). An inconsiderate yachtie anchored right over us the night before after squeezing in a spot half her width. When we tried to leave next morning we pulled up her anchor. They were all too hung over to help, but a keen Canadian came to our aid.
The solution was very simple, quick and easy. It would have saved the people above a great deal of anxst if they had known.
He grabbed a length or 12 mm rope (an old sheet) and tied a large bowline in one end. With the anchor pulled up failry high, and with the help of a boat hook, he passed the looped end of the rope under their anchor chain and slipped it over the nearby deck cleat.
He then pulled the rope tight and fastened it to the other deck cleat (using the OXO method) so that rope was now under their anchor chain and fastened firmly to two of our deck cleats.
Next it was just a matter of lowering our anchor a couple of metres and pulling it back up. Using the boat hook again we were able to pull the anchor clear of their chain. We then carefully released the rope from the deck cleat, using friction to gently lower their chain clear and retrieve our rope.
It took about 3 minutes!
Would have saved the poor folk above a lot of money and anxst. Hopefully it will save you sometime too.