April 13, 2021 4 min read
Anchor stakes are a tried-and-true method for securing hunting blinds against the elements. Traditional anchor stakes were made from metal or wood and required complex knotting techniques to provide ample security. Modern-day anchor stakes are created from high-density plastics and are more convenient to use. If you are a DIY hunter, you understand the value of planting and securing a hunting blind yourself. Learn the best tips and tricks to keep your blinds, tents, and other structures perfectly secured, regardless of weather conditions.
In the past, tent stakes were nothing more than carved wood or bars of forged iron. Admittedly, they were inexpensive and simple to make, and you could still use these, but there are more practical options available. The primary issue with old-fashioned anchoring stakes is the need to knot the rope around it yourself and get the correct placement and tension the first time. If there was even just a bit of play, the rope did not provide adequate tension, and you had to untie it, re-adjust and try all over again, effectively starting from scratch.
Modern ground anchor stakes such as the SlotLock system employ modern, durable materials
and possess convenient features, such as a barrel and slot system, allowing you to secure your rope to the stake without relying on old-fashioned knots. Readjusting or changing your stake’s location is easy and convenient. The barrel and slot system maintain the correct amount of tension every time, making it easy to change the stake’s location whenever necessary.
Anchor stakes come in different lengths for different purposes and environments. If you are going to anchor your hunting blinds into regular dirt and soil, using standard-length stakes (7” to 10”) is sufficient, as it allows both strong anchoring and hassle-free removal. If the current environment is covered with a significant amount of snow, or if the soil is sandy, you may need a longer stake — 12” at the minimum; however, longer is better to reach the stable topsoil underneath. Snow and sand are softer and less dense than regular soil, requiring longer stakes to provide adequate anchoring.
If you were to plant an anchor into a very snowy layer using a standard-length stake, it would not be secured down at all, and you’d run the risk of finding your blind toppled over or dragged away by the wind. Always make sure the soil is sufficiently dense. If you don’t trust the local soil very much, even with the right stake size at your disposal, don’t hesitate to bring extra stakes and plant down more.
If you have no trouble pushing your stakes down into the soil without a hammer, even with the correct stake size, be aware that your stake can come out just as quickly. All it takes is a day of bad weather to find your efforts undone. Rainwater softens the soil, transforming a spot that looked ideal when dry into an unsuitable area. If the wind rises and starts blowing, your ground blind or your tent may end up flying away in turn. Don’t rely exclusively on your hands or feet to drive stakes down; doing so causes you to apply uneven pressure to the stake, putting it at risk of bending. Always use a hammer or a similar tool, such as a rubber camping mallet, when planting your stakes.
If you were a Scout in your youth, you might have been taught to drive the stake down at a steep angle, point facing the tent — or blind. It seems to make sense at first; this angle is supposed to help the stake resist the wind pushing in the other direction. In reality, by doing so, you are giving yourself a handicap. When driving a stake at an angle, it cannot reach as deep into the ground as it could if you had planted it straight down, making it far less secure. Always drive your stakes straight down into the soil, as close to a perfectly vertical angle as possible. If the stake is at a perpendicular angle with the ground surface, it can reach its maximum penetration, increasing resistance against extreme weather.
The key to creating a secure blind that won’t shift and ruin your shot is to stake it with high-quality anchors. Stake length, placement, and rope tension are critical to ensure that you tether your blind firmly in place.
Shadow Hunter Blinds produces high-quality, 100% U.S.made hunting blinds, elevator platforms, and hunting blind accessories for the dedicated bow and gun hunters. We offer ready-made, professional-grade blinds and a wide range of DIY tools and accessories. Our products use the latest technologies and manufacturing techniques, ensuring the highest build quality, comfort, and convenience, allowing you to focus on the hunt instead of the gear.