This summer, I’ve spent a lot of time fishing in my NuCanoe Frontier, and a reoccurring theme I keep running into is how to secure my ‘yak to the river bottom.

Anchors are nice, I have a 7lb. big box special that I have used in the past. The issue that comes into play is how much floor space it consumes and how tippy my float is during the retrieval – should it get stuck on the bottom.

nucanoe frontier

Since I’ve been really focused on shallow water fishing in the backwaters of the Mississippi and Black Rivers and the cranberry marshes of rural Tomah/Warrens; I’ve been looking for an alternative to anchors.

Internet research brought me to kayak stake out poles. Poles start out at around $40.00 and can go up as high as $150 – depending on what they are made of and the length.

Most research proves that poles shouldn’t be more than 6 feet long because then they start becoming flexible and won’t bite into the river/lake bed or hold your position should there be current or wind.

Being an ice angler, I quickly realized that I have a stake out pole in my basement – my ice-fishing spud, an HT Enterprises 54’’ single piece spud. I grabbed the spud and tossed it in my Frontier for a quick trial run on a backwater of the Black River.

ice fishing spud

On first trial, I fell in love with the idea. It didn’t consume very much floor space (no more than my paddle) and was very sturdy for punching deep into the river bottom. If I am ‘sup (Stand up Paddling) fishing, I can throw the spud into the water like a spear to penetrate into the river bottom. It is 54 inches, so it is pretty solid on impact with little vibration or wiggle.

One downfall about using stake out poles is that they’re only effective if the river or lake bottom is soft. The poles won’t work well on rocks because they need to be in at least 6 inches to effectively hold your craft.


  1. I use a divers weight off my weight belt and a thin cord used to restring blinds. I put a small eye bolt on the side of my poke boat just behind the seat. The faster the current the heavier the weight I use. I just drop the weight over and tie the cord to the eye bolt with whatever amount of slack I want. It is easy to pull out off the mud and a few swings in the water right at the yak cleans the mud off the weight.