Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: New Jersey
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Re: Need Opinion: Chart plotter, north up or course up?
With regard to the loss of ships power; I always keep a battery operated handheld on with the active route loaded. ( and plenty of spare batteries) I also like it on because it has a graphing barometer, a compass and other useful information. The related paper chart is always open and notated on the chart table.
I also like to distinguish between Piloting and Navigation. I'm guessing that 90 + % of the time boaters are piloting their vessels using visual aids. Transiting a river, or the ICW, running along a coast line etc. More important to me than where north is, is how much water is under my keel, where is the next mark, Where is that big ship headed etc. So I find myself using my eyes, a depth sounder ( an electronic device) and binoculars more than anything else. When inland or near coastal I'm probably using course up, as a check against what I'm seeing. @ 5 kn. the screen doesn't move that fast. Either works, I don't seem to have a problem switching. I can see where North up when offshore on a long passage keeps everyone on the same page.