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Bahamas Electronic Navigational chart

Old 02-13-2020, 01:40 PM
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Default Bahamas Electronic Navigational chart

What is the best electronic chart map? I planning a long trip to the Exumas from Florida. Does anybody have a thoughts?
Old 02-13-2020, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Santender21 View Post
What is the best electronic chart map? I planning a long trip to the Exumas from Florida. Does anybody have a thoughts?
Last winter I chartered a livaboard for my family for a week in the Exumas. The captain had been operating in those waters for 20 years. The boat was equipped with brand new, high end Raymarine gear. The captain navigated the entire trip using a Garmin handheld because he said the mapping was better for that area.
Old 02-13-2020, 02:31 PM
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I fish the Exumas from Ship Channel Cays to Staniel Cay every month. I have been running an older chartplotter using CMap NT MAX charts and have had no issues. I am in the process of upgrading to new Simrad equipment and sticking with the CMap charts. I will also add that the Navionics (which I think is owned by Garmin now) has an android phone app which has very good detail. It is subscription based $10/year but it is worth it for pre-planning.

Last edited by 1bluemarlin; 02-13-2020 at 06:57 PM.
Old 02-13-2020, 03:33 PM
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Thanks! What about from Grand Bahama south?
Old 02-13-2020, 06:54 PM
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Good coverage and chart detail there too. I have been thru the Lucyan water way with no issues. Bimini, Gun Cay, Cat Cay, Ocean Cay and the Berry Islands all good data. One feature I like on the CMap charts is the course lines and safe water marks. It makes building routes very easy. I am using charts as old as 2007-2011 so newer ones should be better.
Old 02-13-2020, 08:19 PM
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The Lewis "Explorer" charts are the best for the Bahamas. C Map has incorporated these in their charts. There are variations of C-Maps which will work on Navico, Furuno, Sitex and RayMarine platters. Garmin owner Navionics, and recently bought "Wavey Line" charts--it is said that these have been used to update Navionics--Garmin has been decent in the Bahamas.

If I didn't have electronic chips with the "Explorer" charts on them, I would have a set of the Explorer paper charts.
Old 02-14-2020, 03:21 AM
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I found Explorer Charts on Aqua Map ( along with ActiveCaptain and Waterway Guide) invaluable last year.


Old 02-14-2020, 06:44 AM
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Navionics are OK, but the Explorer charts are the best.

I use both in the Bahamas, but trust my eye ball at the end of the day.

Remember, a lot of the data was put down years ago, before good GPS, so take your position with a grain of salt in relation to what you are seeing.
Old 02-14-2020, 08:01 AM
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The maps I was using in the Bahamas were from an original survey dating back to the late 1800s The local details were highly accurate. Upon arriving at a destination I would establish my local position from surrounding landmarks and compare that to a GPS fix. Using that error I would redo the grid lines on the map.
The impressive parameter is that the old maps were typically about 100 feet off maximum with only sextant readings to make the original. When using a sextant I was lucky to get within 50 MILES so I was quite impressed.
Old 02-14-2020, 09:04 AM
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When in the Exumas pay attention to where you are in relation to the Exumas Land and Sea Park. It is a no-fishing no-take protected area in the north central part of the Exumas. It also requires fees to be paid for anchorage and any onshore camping. This park is one of the very few in the Bahamas with actual regular patrols and enforcement. More info here:

https://bnt.bs/
Old 02-14-2020, 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by thataway View Post
The Lewis "Explorer" charts are the best for the Bahamas. C Map has incorporated these in their charts. There are variations of C-Maps which will work on Navico, Furuno, Sitex and RayMarine platters. Garmin owner Navionics, and recently bought "Wavey Line" charts--it is said that these have been used to update Navionics--Garmin has been decent in the Bahamas.

If I didn't have electronic chips with the "Explorer" charts on them, I would have a set of the Explorer paper charts.
This, you want to have Explorer charts incorporated into whatever you are using, and I like having the paper chartbooks from them handy as well. It's like having almost up to the minute local knowledge at your finger tips.

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