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  #1  
Old 01-08-2010
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Float Plan

Hello;

Well I have started to setup my float plan for the trip back to Canada in May from Annapolis.

I know that the worst thing on a boat is a schedule and this is just an outline of what I want to accomplish. There is flex in the plan as to where I stop each night and what not.





For each day I setup a plan following the way points and added in appropriate info on marina's I can stop at in case of emergency with phone numbers, anchorages, lock schedules for the Erie Canal, bridge heights...





There is space on each page to update info and I still have to fill in the tidal information. I have a cover page for each day consolidating the marina info locations with phone numbers, hazards, sunrise and sunset info...

Is there any info that I am missing? I know this is probably overkill but I like the planning stage and this will be my first trip with my first boat. I will be spending 2 weeks in the Annapolis area practicing with my boat and getting the feel for her before leaving. Oh and this in not going to be used to navigate, I will have paper charts as well as a chartplotter/gps setup to aid navigation.

Or perhaps I am just over thinking this...
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Old 01-08-2010
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No such thing as too much preparation... we did a similar exercise when we delivered our son's first boat from Tacoma to BC... unfamiliar waters at the time. plotted the entire route, including through the La Conner "ditch" which we ended up doing in the dark!

Prep payed off!
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Old 01-08-2010
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Sure you're "Overthinking", but no harm if it's your pleasure. You might find that this diligence evolves over time and you might add some data and lose some. I, myself, am very specific about records and plans for engine maintenance and also noting and comparing weather forecasts with tidal information related to my cruising plan. All those activities that allow you to be more knowledgeable and self-reliant will be valuable. Even those that agree that your float plan is overkill will realize that, by doing this, you have familiarized yourself with your cruising environment. Kudos! 'take care and joy, Aythya crew
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Old 01-08-2010
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I don't think you can be over-prepared for a trip like this. The more you plan, look at all the options, familiarize yourself with the trip you will minimize the unknowns. I like to also consider possible alternative's. Primarily, I like to know what options are available to me, if my plan needs to change.
And I like to plug some of them into the plan.

If you hit bad weather somewhere along the way and want to duck-in somewhere, it makes it alot easier, if you've already created the waypoints/route and researched the channel or harbor, rather than trying to check the charts and depths and create new waypoints, at the same time you're dealing with the weather.

A plan is only that...rarely does everything go according to plan...but I never leave home without one......the key is not being a slave to a plan or a schedule but, being willing to adapt and knowing what all the options are.

I love sitting in my living room plotting out all the possible sailings when it's freezing outside.
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Old 01-08-2010
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Nothing at all wrong with planning carefully. And what better way to spend a Canadian winter?

I've always wanted to run that Eerie canal (but in a power cruiser). Where will you drop the mast?
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Old 01-09-2010
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Pilotage...Is working from one aid to the next---and 95% of pilotage is visual.

95% of your journey is pilotage---The charts, GPS's and plotters are there to confirm what you see on the water with your own eyes...

Seamanship...Is only sweating the details when necessary because you need to sail the boat and keep an eye on everything and not get tunnel vision...

Good luck
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Old 01-09-2010
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As a winter exercise, today's Google Earth technology lets you preview much of your intended route/destinations as well... great way to spend (waste?) a few hours!
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Old 01-09-2010
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I think Google Earth technology will help you

good luck and be carefful
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