The more you fish, the more you need the latest and greatest piece of equipment. Some of us start out making our own equipment, while others are given old items from friends. It seems like a rarity that we can find a product that will last a lifetime on our first shot.
I started using a anchor pin that I made out of PVC on my X-Factor this past summer. Even though the pin held, it was way to flexible to keep me anchored in current. That PVC went back in the garage for future projects.
Then, my buddy Mark gave me a Capt. Dick Stakeout Pole. This was definitely an upgrade, but I found a few issues. First, it was too rigid. If I tried to anchor in a stiff current the pin would not hold. Next, the diameter is too large. This causes problems when you try to anchor in a hard bottom. Finally, at five feet, it was a little bit to short for my tastes. It is a quality product, it just was not what I was looking for.
I ended up finding a Stick it Pin at the Richmond fishing expo. At $70 for a 7 foot pin system, I jumped on this, as it saved me a few bucks and I did not have to pay shipping. My first thought was the quality of the materials and the solid construction of those materials. It has enough weight to let you know that it will last, but not too much to make using it uncomfortable. It also has multiple lengths, I opted for the 7′ model which is maneuverable and gives me the ability to pin the normal places I fish. It is a compromise between the PVC and the Stakeout pole. It has enough flexibility to keep you anchored in current, and not pull out. It also has a small diameter, which allows you to easily anchor in hard bottoms. Environmentally, it is better than using an anchor, because it does not destroy grasses, tear up the bottom, or destroy oyster beds. It also doubles as a skinny watter pole, which from my yak, allows me to pole the flats and anchor up then I spot my target.
I would definitely recommend this product to anyone who anchors up in shallow water. Check them out at http://www.stickitanchorpins.com/index.html.