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post #1 of 12 Old 06-01-2016 Thread Starter
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''Wind maps"?

Okay, all you old salts know exactly what I'm talking about: charts that feature the little "musical-note" symbols, which tell you how much wind is typical, from what direction, at what time of year ...

What do you call these "maps"? Can they be found online? I'll need to learn to use them to prepare for an upcoming circumnavigation in my Catalina 22.




(YES I'm kidding about that last ... but I do want to learn about them ... thanks!)
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post #2 of 12 Old 06-01-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

If you want to use the old antique type weathers charts our Government still uses them go to NOAA.gov/weather. but a lot of sailors today use web sites like Sailflow.com much easier to use and read.

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post #3 of 12 Old 06-01-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

You could use any number of apps for PC, iphone, Android, etc. that has the wind data info you seek... this is just one of many but will give you clues to use. I would get Chapman Piloting or some other book that has an extensive section on reading weather maps.

Buoyweather | Accurate Marine Weather Forecasts.

Others may have more specific info regarding weather applications and their interpretation of the those 'musical note flags' you mention.
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post #4 of 12 Old 06-01-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dixiedawg View Post
Okay, all you old salts know exactly what I'm talking about: charts that feature the little "musical-note" symbols, which tell you how much wind is typical, from what direction, at what time of year ...

What do you call these "maps"? Can they be found online? I'll need to learn to use them to prepare for an upcoming circumnavigation in my Catalina 22.




(YES I'm kidding about that last ... but I do want to learn about them ... thanks!)

They are known as Pilot Charts, published by month. They can be found at (click on) NGA Atlas of Pilot Charts.
.

Select the region and time of year you're interested in. The "wind roses" show the direction of winds by percentages and the "feathers" on the arrows, their average force.
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post #5 of 12 Old 06-01-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

Look at passageweather.com and pick out the map relevant to your area of operation. The wind maps can be animated or advanced frame by frame, but be aware that the information is for GMT so you have to convert that to your regional time zone. They basically take the publicly available data from NOAA and give you hour to hour weather charts. It is a good tool not only for planning your trip but also studying the weather and typical wind patterns during the day for someplace you are trying to learn about.
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post #6 of 12 Old 06-01-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

Not sure if you are looking for pilot charts, they cover large areas, but I found them quite interesting to look at:

Maritime Safety Information

Among other things, they have wind roses for each "quadrant' month by month.
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post #7 of 12 Old 06-01-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by svHyLyte View Post
They are known as Pilot Charts, published by month. They can be found at (click on) NGA Atlas of Pilot Charts.
.

Select the region and time of year you're interested in. The "wind roses" show the direction of winds by percentages and the "feathers" on the arrows, their average force.

Ah, yes! "PILOT charts", that's it!! THAT'S the word I was trying to remember, and without it, google was not helping much. LOL

Thank you, and thanks everyone!!
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post #8 of 12 Old 06-02-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

Unasked for trivia.... The "Pilot Charts" have been compiled from ships logs starting back during the days of the British Admirality thru the present. Several hundred years of observations of wind and current in a given location on a given date are used to compile the info shown on the charts....

"If the wind will not serve, lay to the oars"


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post #9 of 12 Old 06-02-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dixiedawg View Post
Okay, all you old salts know exactly what I'm talking about: charts that feature the little "musical-note" symbols, which tell you how much wind is typical, from what direction, at what time of year ...
As others have noted they are called pilot charts. As Cap-Couillon notes they are based on hundreds of years of data. It is pretty clear that there have been changes in that time. Jimmy Cornell has an updated global set of pilot charts based only on the last 70 years or so and dominated by satellite data collection. Highly recommended.

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Originally Posted by Skyeterrier View Post
Look at passageweather.com and pick out the map relevant to your area of operation.
Except that Passageweather is based entirely on GRIBs - the direct output of a single computer model untouched by human hands. Artifacts we care about like cold fronts are not reflected.

Synoptic charts that are developed by real live meteorologists based on multiple models, weather balloon reporting, overhead visible and IR and radar imagery, and ship reporting are better.

See AuspiciousWorks - Communications / Yacht Management / Deliveries Worldwide
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post #10 of 12 Old 06-02-2016
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Re: ''Wind maps"?

There is a bit of confusion in this discussion between weather and climate. Pilot charts show climate patterns - long term averages of winds and other conditions. On the other hand GRIBs, Passageweather, and the like are weather maps. They show current and predicted (for a few days) wind conditions. These might be very different than the long-term averages shown on pilot charts. Both of these are very useful but they fundamentally different purposes.

After the refit we have decided to sell Ainia. We want something smaller that would be could for the light summer winds of Lake Ontario, although we plan to spend at least a couple of winters in the Caribbean before heading north.
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