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We get this question a lot: How do you anchor a jet ski properly?

If you are a beginner jet ski rider, you probably want to know how to anchor your jet ski securely, and which are the best jet ski anchors on the market.

For your convenience, we at JetDrift have set up a complete jet ski anchoring guide for you!

Can You Anchor a Jet Ski?

Yes, you can anchor a jet ski if the water depth allows it. It makes sense to anchor your jet ski in many cases like if you want to fish, swim, or snorkel. Moreover, many owners prefer anchoring their jet skis rather than beaching or docking it.

This is because docking a jet ski can be very stressful and may cause hull damage. In addition, you may be charged docking fees, or you may only use the guest dock for a limited time.

Just like docking, beaching a jet ski can also result in various types of damage. Because of these concerns, it often makes sense to anchor a jet ski.

The biggest advantage of anchoring a jet ski is that its hull avoids hitting the bottom, the dock, or other objects. On the other hand, anchors never offer as much security as docks or pilings, as wind, waves or currents can cause the jet ski to drift away, especially if it’s anchored incorrectly!

To avoid these situations, it’s imperative that you learn how to anchor your jet ski properly and securely!

How to Effectively Anchor a Jet Ski

To anchor a jet ski properly you may want to choose the right PWC anchor, one that fits to your jet ski and the surface of the bottom. Attach the correct length of anchor line or an ‘anchor buddy’ to the anchor and tie it to the bow eye. You can also consider using an anchor buoy to mark the anchor. Finally, lower the anchor carefully and make sure it doesn’t drift around on the bottom.

Let’s take a closer look at these steps!

1. Choose The Right Anchor

Selecting the right jet ski anchor may be challenging, as different types of bottoms require different types of anchors. Moreover, your jet ski’s weight and dimensions also play a role.

Keep in mind that the size of a jet ski’s anchor is very limited, as it must fit in the storage compartment. This means you can’t expect the same holding power that the bigger and heavier boat anchors offer.

2. Anchor Lines and Buoys

In addition to the anchor, you will need a jet ski anchor line.

Regarding the length, you always have to use a longer line than the water depth. This is because if your anchor line is too short the waves can easily lift the anchor and ultimately your jet ski may drift away.

The appropriate length of a jet ski anchor line always depends on the water conditions.

If you anchor in quiet water the recommended ratio is at least 3:1. This means that if the water depth is 3 feet, you will need 9 feet of rope.

But if the water is wavy it’s safest to use at least a 21-foot long anchor line in 3 feet of water. (7:1 ratio)

As a rule of thumb, you can’t go wrong with anything from 3:1 to 7:1, depending on the conditions.

Another trick is to invest in an “anchor buddy,” which is actually a stretchy rope. Many jet ski owners prefer this type of bungee anchor line over a traditional rope as it reduces the stress on the hull.

You can also consider purchasing a small anchor buoy. This not only marks the spot where your anchor is, but can also come in handy if your anchor gets stuck.

3. Find Your Spot

When you’re looking for your anchoring spot, keep in mind that you can’t anchor a jet ski just anywhere as many areas have anchoring restrictions.

Even if you are not in a “No Anchoring” zone, pay attention to the traffic around you. It’s never a good idea to anchor in a busy navigation channel!

You may want to check the bottom as well, try to avoid coral or rocky surfaces, as the anchor cannot dig into these bottoms very securely.

Also, don’t forget to take into account the wind, tide, and currents before you anchor your jet ski.

4. Anchoring the Jet Ski

When it comes to anchoring a jet ski, you have to check the water depth. Keep in mind that it’s not recommended that you operate the jet ski in less than 3 feet of water!

Based on the water depth calculate the length of the anchor line, and attach it to the anchor.

Contrary to popular belief, jet ski anchors have to be lowered slowly instead of just dropping them. There is no need for sudden movements as you could accidentally drop the anchor on the dock or even your feet.

Instead of dropping, move the anchor overboard, lower it slowly into the water and let the rope out. Once the anchor bites into the bottom, make sure it isn’t dragging. (Moving around on the bottom)

Another issue is that ropes are prone to getting tangled, so it’s always wise to thoroughly check it before you start anchoring your jet ski.

You can even reset the anchor if you notice that it doesn’t hold securely.

If the anchor does its job, always tie the anchor line to the jet ski’s bow hook (bow eye). Never secure it to the handlebar, mirrors, or the stern as this can result in damage, or even worse, your jet ski could capsize or drift away!

Let’s face it, if you anchor a jet ski on the beach, attaching the rope to the bow hook is an easy task.

But what if you want to anchor your jet ski in deep water? The main issue could be that you can’t reach the bow hook from the saddle.

Fortunately, this problem can be easily solved with a little trick. If you want to learn how to effectively anchor your jet ski in deep water don’t hesitate to read more!

Anchoring a Jet Ski in Deep Water

To anchor a jet ski in deep water you need to prepare in advance as you can’t reach the bow hook from the saddle. To solve this, securely attach a 5-6-foot rope to the bow hook and store it in the front storage bin. You have to do this before you launch your jet ski. On the open water, you then can simply attach the anchor line to the end of this rope.

Best practice is to attach two carabiners to both ends of this rope, and a small float to help keep your rope afloat if you accidentally drop it into the water.

Another solution is to make a loop from a 10-foot rope and then attach it to the bow hook. You can see this setup on this tutorial video:

This solution can really be helpful if you want to anchor your jet ski for fishing!

Don’t forget that if you want to anchor your jet ski in deep water, you will need a longer anchor line. Try to stick to the 7:1 ratio.

Because of the long rope, the jet ski will move around the anchor on a wider arch.

Don’t worry as it’s normal, but you have to take this into account when you anchor, so your jet ski will get too close to objects, other vessels, or the shore.

The risks of anchoring a jet ski

The risks of anchoring a jet ski

So finally, don’t forget that you have to lower your anchor further away from where you want your jet ski to sit.


As it involves much less risk of damage, many owners like anchoring their jet skis instead of beaching or docking it.

You can anchor your jet ski properly by following these simple steps:

– Choose the right anchor
– Choose your spot carefully (watch for restrictions, objects and other vessels around you)
– Shut off the engine if the water is less than 3 feet deep
– Be careful not to suck the rope up into the pump
– Determine the water depth
– Calculate the correct length of rope (3:1 in calm water, 7:1 in wavy water)
– Make sure the rope isn’t tangled and attach it to the anchor
– Lower the anchor slowly, never drop it
– Always attach the rope to the bow hook
– Make sure the anchor holds properly and isn’t dragging on the bottom
– Never leave your jet ski unattended on the anchor if at all possible

This is our short jet ski anchoring guide, we hope you find it useful!



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