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Old 05-06-2012, 11:56 AM   #1
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Charts for inside passage?

I'm curious what charts are used by people to backup electronic charts for a run up the inside passage. I'm headed to Petersburg from Olympia, leaving in mid June, and I've got every chart electronically, but am trying to figure out what to take on paper. The cost of getting all the actual paper charts is daunting, not to mention the storage, though I'd love to have them. I still really love paper charts, but I'm looking for a cheaper and more compact option. What have you all used?
Craig
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:14 PM   #2
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Buy all the charts Douglas and Waggoner list, and buy their books too. Also buy the Canada area 5, 6 and 7 tide and current books and know how to read them. Is this your first trip up that way? There is no Tow Boat, little cell coverage and lots of bad weather. Running aground can be quite unpleasant if not deadly in the 15 to 20 foot tide swings and potential 8 knot currents. Also, assume you will lose a GPS signal at the most inopportune time.

Don't get me wrong, for the prepared it is a trip to remember but at best with many glitches. For the unprepared, well -----
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:16 PM   #3
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I've got both roll paper and electronic, plus I bought two chart books (years ago) by Van Winkle Publishing, "Exploring"; Puget Sound and British Columbia; and Alaska and British Columbia. By far the chart books were outstanding and contain a ton of local knowledge and history. If I had it to do again, I would probably not buy the paper charts. Didn't hardly use them and between the Garmin plotter and the chart books they spent the trip in their chart tubes.
From my personal experience. Enjoy your trip!!

Larry B
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:45 PM   #4
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Chart books

Hi Larry ..... I'm wondering if you could give me more information about the chart books. I think I've seen them, but haven't been able to find them online. I've got a good collection of other printed information, with guide books and current tables (which are current), but I was thinking I wouldn't use the full size paper charts much.
Thanks for the help.
Craig
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:55 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by cnbirrell View Post
Hi Larry ..... I'm wondering if you could give me more information about the chart books. I think I've seen them, but haven't been able to find them online. I've got a good collection of other printed information, with guide books and current tables (which are current), but I was thinking I wouldn't use the full size paper charts much.
Thanks for the help.
Craig
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Old 05-06-2012, 01:00 PM   #6
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There is some info in this thread...

http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/s...arts-5474.html
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Old 05-06-2012, 01:01 PM   #7
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A friend of ours had the charts printed at a local shop using a plotter from the electronic versions he downloaded from NOAA. A lot cheaper than buying them. Not water proof and no color but a lot cheaper.
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Old 05-06-2012, 01:17 PM   #8
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I would suggest a couple of different options to enhance your electronic charts.

1. Canadian Chart #3744 (Queen Charlotte Sound) & #3802, thru Welcome Page | Page d'accueil

2. Docks and Destinations by Peter Vassilopoulos is a great book to have on board. This book is "A Complete Guide to Pacific Northwest Marinas" it has GPS waypoints in it as well.

3. Marine Altas Volume 2- Port Hardy to Skagway

4. BoatersBluePages.com and Marina Guide (Puget Sound to Haida Gwaii)

Cell phone coverage has been getting better. FYI.... Now that the cruise ship season is back upon us the "Inside Passage Route" is getting more use as well as BC Ferries runs steady from Porty Hardy BC to Prince Rupert BC (a trip 15 hrs in duration).

Hope this helps shed some light into your post. Look forward to having you stop into Prince Rupert on your trip.

Cheers for now, Kevin and Melanie
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Old 05-06-2012, 01:33 PM   #9
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Everything Tom (Sunchaser) says is right on the money. In addition to the charts and publications he mentions I would add two other books. One is the Canadian Sailing Directions and the other is Charlie's Charts.

Ther is also a fantastic guide to the Inside Passage that commercial fishermen used to use. It was complete with drawings of what bays and headlands and channels look like. This book went out of print many years ago and used copies sold for many hundreds of dollars if you could even find someone willing to part with their copy. The book recently went back into print. It is not cheap but it's
apparently worth every penny if one is taking a trip like this, particularly of the first time. The only place I've seen it is at Captains Nautical Supply in Seattle. If I can find the title I'll post it here.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:14 PM   #10
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Well...

I've made the complete trip from Washington state to Southcentral Alaska twice now. Including two Gulf of Alaska crossings. Just got back from the last one this week.

On each voyage I had:

Cruising guides, IE wagoners, Local knowlege.
Redundant chart chips: Yes, two of each chip
Redundant chart plotters with redundant GPS sensors.
CMAP planning software on my laptop.

No paper charts.

In my opinion there is no actual "need" for paper charts as long as you have full redundancy in your electronic charting systems.

If you want paper, by all means do so, I just cannot form a logical argument that supports the need for paper.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:38 PM   #11
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Impossible for you to loose your electrons Ksanders?

Yes sunchaser is almost always right on the money.

I'd like to have all the paper charts but $$$$. I do have about 20% of what I'd like to have but usually leave them under the mattress in the V berth. That is where my Albin manual suggested to put them and hav'nt found a better place yet. Now and then my plotter shows us over land but it's always been in a spot where we can see right where we are so it hasn't been an issue but I suppose it could be. Would boating be more fun w/o a little risk? But it certainly is (within reason) worth trying to minimize that risk. And everyone has their own line in sand. And ksanders I hope we never need the paper charts we do'nt have.
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:11 PM   #12
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When I have cruised to Alaska (3 times now) I have had chart booklets to get through Canada and you have been given some good suggestions for these and for Alaska I got photcopies from Bellingham Chart Printers now owned by Tidesend:

Discounted Nautical Charts, Reproductions, Electronic Charts & Navigational Software | Bellingham Chart Printers

They sell a 2/3 size for $5.95. When I bought mine, they sold the charts in a booklet for 3 different regions for SE Alaska. I don't see that on the web site now and it looks like the price has gone WAY up but I bought mine in 2002.

I also have duplication for my electronic charts in the form of a Furuno chartplotter and a laptop running Coastal Explorer.

Good luck on your cruise. Wish I could go.

Ron

Suggust you go to Fisheries Supply in Seattle to check out the available chart book for Canadian charts.

Ron
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Old 05-06-2012, 04:33 PM   #13
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One can also get all the charts via Navionics on an I pad. For those of us who still feel dead reckoning skills play a role, hard copy charts (cheap or otherwise) are pretty neat, there is all kinds of stuff on them and the legends. Have any of you ever done a predicted log race sans GPS and plotters? What fun and navigation and common sense skills are critical.

Ken Saunders, on a "speed is of the essence" delivery run buoy to buoy as you just did, I can see where you did not break out the charts. Some of us do not do delivery run style travel buoy to buoy but instead cruise with no firm schedule and pick our destination on the fly based upon fun factor, weather and sea state. To keep peace in the family we very much enjoy laying out the next day's course on the plotter(s) while looking over the charts for fun "what if" places to stop on the spur of the moment.
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Old 05-06-2012, 06:54 PM   #14
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We have not only the big chart books for everyplace we go (that has chart book coverage), we also heve full size NOAA and Canadian individual charts for everyplace we go. We also have three dedicated C-Map plotters on the boat-- Foruno NavNet, Echotech green screen, and a new Stardard Horizon. We have cards for the region between Olympia (or farther south on some of the plotters) and Yakutat (or all of Alaska on some plotters).

And we use it all. Not so much the big individual charts although we occasionally get one out to cover an area that's not in a chart book. But the paper charts/chart books give us the big picture instantly instead having to zoom in and out on the plotters.

And they serve as an important backup to the plotters. As has been mentioned occasionally on this forum, there can be discrepancies between the plotter charts and reality. Your course between the rocks looks fine on the plotter and then you look out the window to see that the rocks are no twhere your plotter says they are. We have not experienced this ourselves (yet) but enough people have that we know it is an ever-present reality. The paper charts can help you catch a situation like this before your boat announces it with a crunch.

And both my wife and I like working with charts and maps, on land, on the water, and in the air.

You can certainly take a boat to Alaska and back safely with electronics alone. But as Eric points out, if the eltricicals stop holding hands you could be in a world of hurt.
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:01 PM   #15
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Tom-- are the iPad Navionics charts for the PNW/BC/SE Alaska free and do you need to be online to view them? I have a 64 gig, WiFi/3G iPad but I'm not interested in navigating with it, just looking at charts on it. Thanks.
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:46 PM   #16
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Impossible for you to loose your electrons Ksanders?
Yes, it is virtually impossible to loose all of my electronics and still be under way.

I'd have to loose all four sources of 12V DC power I have, or I'd have to loose completely separate chart plotters.

There is not a single point of failure that could take away my ability to see where I am on a chart at any given time.

I carry charts for my home area in Alaska, but I refer to them not out of necessity, but out of ease to choose a fishing spot.
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:46 PM   #17
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Marin, I have it down loaded on my iPad and it works great, it makes for great offline planning. I believe I paid $14 or there abouts for the download. Just call it up under the Apps icon.

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Old 05-06-2012, 07:49 PM   #18
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Marin
I did not get an I Pad download set of charts yet. I've used them in Canada with a friend who pulled down an App for about $30. I looked them up some time ago and recall an App purchased in the US for about $50 will cover from Seattle to Juneau. I've heard some pay about $200 for a full suite of Navionics and USB into a GPS for plotting. Like you, I am plotter rich so one more isn't a priority.
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:49 PM   #19
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I believe Sun you are right, it was nearer $30 for the iPad. I did order the Platinum+ for the plotter and it was ~$200. We'll see how that works on the new Lowrance HDS10 Gen2 plotter.

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Old 05-07-2012, 12:49 AM   #20
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I thought there was a legal requirement to carry paper charts

Am I wrong on this. On my last three cruises I've carried paper charts, instructions to mariners and cruising guides as well as chart plotters and Lap top with Coastal Explorer. After using them on my first trip to AK I stopped using charts and rely on Coastal explorer for trip planning, backup and my 2 chart plotters for navigation. On the deliveries I rely on Coastal explorer and a puck gps as I'm usually more familiar with Coastal explorer than whatever chart plotter is on the boat. I carry charts but on long trips they are a pain to keep organized.
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