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Old 10-12-2017, 12:53 PM   #1
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Preparing to enter an unfamiliar port

When you're out cruising how do you find information about the upcoming ports such as clearance, depth, port layout, etc? We find its always easier to enter and dock when we know what to expect.
Personally, we use the Navionics Platinum chip because it has 3d images and aerial photos so we can see the layout, etc. What do you use to learn about new ports and prep for entry?
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Old 10-12-2017, 01:09 PM   #2
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Coast Pilot?
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Old 10-12-2017, 01:17 PM   #3
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NOAA nav charts, (digital usually), google earth views, proceed slowly
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Old 10-12-2017, 02:04 PM   #4
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Take a look at Active Captain (activecaptain.com). It has charts that you can scroll across, zoom in/out, etc. If you zoom in on a particular area "flags" come up that show Marinas, anchorages, local knowledge and hazards.


If you click on one (marinas, for example) it will show you the name, contact info via VHF and phone, availability of fuel, etc. Lots of info. You can also click on the Reviews tab to find out what other boaters think of that marina.


Try it, you'll like it.
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Old 10-12-2017, 02:09 PM   #5
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Most cruising guides here in the Northwest address those concerns. Probably the same where you live.
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Old 10-12-2017, 02:09 PM   #6
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2nd the Active Captain. Lots of good info.
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Old 10-12-2017, 05:24 PM   #7
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Nautical chart, Google earth, Active Captain, and electronic Cruising Guides. If a big port, maybe Coast Pilot for secutity, etc issues.

All free and cover all the bases I have ever needed
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Old 10-12-2017, 07:03 PM   #8
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Garmin BlueChart with Active Captain, plus iPad Maps for aerial views.
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:27 PM   #9
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Active captain, charts, and Google earth but never forget you can access local knowledge with the dockmaster with tow captains, and other boaters.
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Old 10-12-2017, 10:04 PM   #10
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Wait until daylight if it is dark... never enter a new port after dark unless circumstances require it.
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Old 10-12-2017, 10:11 PM   #11
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If you wait till after dark, they all look the same.

Ted
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Old 10-13-2017, 06:46 AM   #12
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Bermuda has a history of false signals to lure boats ashore, for the locals to wreck.

Most of the harbors and marinas today hope for repeat business, so a chart or even hand held GPS will get one in with no drama.
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Old 10-14-2017, 06:40 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by O C Diver View Post
If you wait till after dark, they all look the same.

Ted
LOL
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Old 10-16-2017, 11:47 AM   #14
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I find the Waterway Guide to be an excellent source for the Atlantic ICW and nearby waters. I use both the hard copy and the electronic versions.
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Old 10-16-2017, 01:28 PM   #15
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I find the Waterway Guide to be an excellent source for the Atlantic ICW and nearby waters. I use both the hard copy and the electronic versions.
It is for the AICW but not for other parts of the country or other countries. It also lacks some of the features of AC while in other areas having things AC doesn't.
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Old 10-20-2017, 12:53 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by O C Diver View Post
If you wait till after dark, they all look the same.

Ted
Lol!
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Old 10-20-2017, 02:27 PM   #17
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Lol!
Sounds like Ted parks by feel...
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Old 10-20-2017, 02:55 PM   #18
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In addition to most of the above, I find satellite images to be very useful. Especially since they are accessible through by nav software (NN3D), and since I can overlay radar and charts. And unlike some non-NOAA non-US charts, the locational accuracy is great.
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