For single hand operation, nothing is as fast, convenient, or safe as anchoring with an anchor ball. Frankly, I think I can haul anchor faster than two guys hauling in the conventional manner. When I drop anchor, I can watch my depth finder as the boat drifts back and tie off precisely on top of the fish.
Here is how my boat and anchor ball system is rigged.
Here is how I anchor. The first step after finding a rock is to determine where the anchor should be hooked to allow the boat to be positioned over the fish. I drop anchor from the cockpit as shown below. The engine is in reverse at idle speed. The anchor ball is not released. The anchor line slides out through the anchor ball ring.
Continue adding scope until you are about 2 boat lengths from your buoy and then release the anchor ball.
Secure the anchor line at the spring line cleat when you are close to your buoy. You can haul or release more line as needed.
I always rig my anchor system on the side of the boat closest to the helm. This gives me a better view of the anchor line while I haul anchor. Turn the wheel to port and pull ahead. The anchor ball will begin to track down the Stbd side of the boat as shown in figure 1.
Continue forward and slightly to port until the ball comes along side. Reach over and grab the anchor line as the ball passes and secure the anchor line with one wrap around the stern cleat. No way to foul up now. See drawing 2.