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Old 12-11-2019, 02:29 PM   #1
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Bahamas paper charts - Maptech/Explorer

To prepare for our first crossing from FL to the Bahamas I have the big MapTech chart book as well as the MapTech cruising guide.

I see that a lot of people rave about the Explorer charts though I have never held an Explorer chart book in my hands.

My plan is to do my routing by taking the waypoints from the chart book and transfer into AquaMaps and PolarNavy (though I might have to change that due to them closing up shop).

Is there a big enough difference that I should pick up an Explorer book?
What programs are PolarNavy users migrating to?
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Old 12-11-2019, 02:36 PM   #2
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You can get Explorer Charts within Aquamap.

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Old 12-11-2019, 02:48 PM   #3
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Thanks for the response, kind of nervous - going with a good boat but a nervous crew since we've never done anything like this before. I assume we'll be out on the water for at least a month.

I will be buying the AquaMap Bahamas charts.

Does AquaMap have routes that I can export and put into my PC based plotters and hand draw plots out onto my paper maptech charts?
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Old 12-11-2019, 03:39 PM   #4
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Sorry, don't know that...

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Old 12-11-2019, 04:36 PM   #5
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Get the Explorer Chartbooks. They may be duplicative in certain areas or information, but if you are a newbie, they cover an awful lot of basic stuff. Our next Bahamas trip will be my tenth time, and we will definitely have all three Explorer Chartbooks with us.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:41 PM   #6
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Get the Explorer Chartbooks. They may be duplicative in certain areas or information, but if you are a newbie, they cover an awful lot of basic stuff. Our next Bahamas trip will be my tenth time, and we will definitely have all three Explorer Chartbooks with us.
Agree 100%. Large format, sunlight viewable, great local knowledge. Superb for planning. If you have an electronic chartplotter that incorporates them so much the better, but IMO not a substitute for the big books.
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Old 12-11-2019, 07:09 PM   #7
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Definitely not leaving without paper charts onboard.
If the maps in Explorer are better I'd be happy to keep my current MapTech Bahamas charts as a backup. I liked them coming down the ICW, the 22x17 size was nice and clear.
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Old 12-12-2019, 05:56 AM   #8
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Aqua Maps uses Explorer charts for the Bahamas. They also just released their new software for iOS. If you transit the AICW, definitely consider the Master version of Aquamaps also for the USACE data thru the skinny parts
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Old 12-12-2019, 08:07 AM   #9
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I used a combination of AquaMaps(android) and Polar Navy (on a laptop) to get down the AICW and found it to be excellent.

Polar Navy is discontinued and would love to have AquaMaps running on my laptop but that isn't possible.
I guess now for the FL to Bahamas I'm looking for something with Explorer charts that is Windows or LInux compatible to run on my laptop (since the screen is so much bigger/easier to read) while also running AquaMaps on a phone.

BTW, I use an older Panasonic Toughbook with a sunlight readable screen.
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Old 12-12-2019, 09:31 AM   #10
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Thanks for the response, kind of nervous - going with a good boat but a nervous crew since we've never done anything like this before. I assume we'll be out on the water for at least a month.

I will be buying the AquaMap Bahamas charts.

Does AquaMap have routes that I can export and put into my PC based plotters and hand draw plots out onto my paper maptech charts?
Yes, Aqua Map can export routes, marker and tracks in GPX or KMZ format.
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