A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Bob Goethe
Date: 2016 Aug 13, 14:53 -0700
The other action step is that -- as long as you take some time right after breakfast to plot your course for the day, together with danger bearings, bearings that can be used to signal a change in course, alternate anchorages, and the like -- you can never go wrong by keeping a hand bearing compass around your neck on a lanyard.
I *like* having a chartplotter in the cockpit, but I have this sneaking suspicion that by focusing my attention down in the cockpit, it may decrease my situational awareness. Of course, like the lady who passed me driving a big Ford truck, with a cellphone in one hand and lipstick in the other (presumably she was steering with her knees), nobody who has lost situational awareness is AWARE that they have lost it. It is like a kind of temporary dementia.
My last charter trip, in addition to a chartplotter, I used NV paper charts, which I tore out of the spiral-bound, large-format book they came in, and folded to fit inside a clipboard/folder. I use big rubber bands to hold them in place. The clipboard is vinyl-covered, and when I close it, it gives my paper charts a little bit of water resistance.
One piece of advice I read years ago about charts has stuck with me. "Mark them hard, then replace them."
One thing I haven't tried but am considering for my next trip is to purchase some of this Scotch Tape that is alleged to be removable. Then use light, erasable pencil lines on my chart, put clear tape over the top of those lines, then redo the lines with a Sharpie marker on the tape, to make the lines really pop off the page.
This second action step idea is not a new one to me, obviously. But I had only considered it in terms of situational awareness, not in terms of the chartplotter's marked navigational hazards being offset from their positions per the GPS.
You really do want to use all possible navigational inputs, and compare one to the other, and then ponder the signficance of any discrepancies.