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WTF CMOR Maps

Old 12-16-2020, 08:50 PM
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Default WTF CMOR Maps

Decided to take the day off yesterday to do some deep dropping in the keys with a buddy. Bought a new updated South Florida CMOR map which has keys coverage earlier this year at the boat show. Hit some of my usual spots off of Islamorada to get some fish on the boat and then decided to head further south to explore some new spots that looked interesting on my CMOR map — one of which was a great ledge that is about 20 miles south near Marathon . We get to the area and set up. We are not there for longer than 5 minutes when an FWC boat pulls up and the officers inform me that I am illegally fishing in a restricted area. I apologize profusely and tell them I had no idea. The officer comes on board and checks out my prior catch and performs a safety check. Everything is in order.

The officers, both of whom were extremely nice and professional, then tell me that the restricted area called “East Hump” should be indicated on my chart. I show them my CMOR chart and they inform me that they are fully aware that the CMOR chart fails to inform the user that the area is restricted. They then inform me that they have spoken to CMOR and informed them that their chart contains areas that are restricted and that they have caught many boats who were also using CMOR maps wrongfully fishing in the same area and that they should delete the area from their chart or at least provide warnings on the chart. This is shocking to me. First, if you are in the business of providing charts mapping the seabed specifically targeting bottom fisherman, why in the world would you waste time mapping restricted areas and include them in your chart? Even if you did not know that the area was restricted when you first mapped it, why would you not eliminate that area or inform your customers of the issue after you learned of the restriction? I have googled it and learned that the area became restricted in 2009- more than 10 years before I bought my chart. Even more irresponsible, CMOR continues to sell the exact version of my chart. I fully get that CMOR is not a navigational chart, but that is irrelevant. Navigating through this area is safe and not restricted. CMOR is a chart designed and marketed to people who bottom fish. It should not contain restricted areas and if it does should clearly indicate it is a restricted area. I like the guys at CMOR. I have purchased several of their charts and they are good guys and for the most part I like their charts. However, this is irresponsible and could have got me into trouble.

The officers ultimately just gave me a warning. One good thing did come if it. I asked the officers if they had any tips on where to find queen snappers in a non-restricted area. The gave me a general location. First drop we pulled up a 20lb slob.

Last edited by mig888; 12-16-2020 at 09:04 PM.
Old 12-17-2020, 12:35 AM
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I would expect it is the responsibility & obligation of the boat operator to confirm on a navigational chart where the restricted areas may be if there are such places where you roam . I wouldn't expect to necessarily see anything like that on my 3D mapping like CMOR , Strikelines and Navionics Relief Shading screens.
Though it would help in situations like yours if CMOR had designated restrictions , to me at least your irresponsibility blame seems rather misplaced.

Good you apparently had a very respectful attitude and the FWC officers were kindly understanding so it was just a relatively painless learning experience to help avoid such situations of future forays. And congratulations on the catch at your next stop your new friends aimed you toward.
Old 12-17-2020, 03:59 AM
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I agree with you that CMOR is not a navigational chart. However, I disagree with your premise. I was not stopped for “navigating” in the area. I was stopped for “bottom fishing” in the area. I don’t really buy my navigation charts for determining where to fish— mostly where to navigate. I bought the CMOR chart—which is directly developed and marketed to help me find places to fish not navigate. Therefore, I have every right to rely on the fact that it would provide legal areas to fish. Taking your premise to the logical extreme, do you think CMOR could responsibly sell me a chart that contained only illegal areas? The chart would be worthless. Yes, I fully agree that the Captain takes responsibility for nearly all things that happen. In this case, however, CMOR dropped the ball— period.
Old 12-17-2020, 04:17 AM
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It’s a depth chart, not a navigation chart. Two different purposes.
Old 12-17-2020, 04:26 AM
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I don't use them but I do agree that is isn't their responsibility to show you areas you can or can not fish. They are selling a card that shows relief shading. I would think it is the responsibility of the user to know where to and where not to fish.
Old 12-17-2020, 04:32 AM
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CMOR produces a product to show extreme bottom detail, they do not produce a product to tell you the rules, that's on you. I understand your frustration, but if they get into that business of "navigation/fishing regulations", some @$$HAT will sue them for some @$$HAT B U L L S H ! +.
Old 12-17-2020, 05:17 AM
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Ok, I understand the other side of the argument, I just don’t agree with it. But that is what makes a good debate. Why do I need a chart to provide me bottom detail and relief shading if it is worthless? Don’t you at least agree that CMOR did not research and know this was a restricted area when they spent the time mapping it and added it to the chart? I simply think they did not know it was a prohibited area when they mapped it. Otherwise it’s business model is quite stupid mapping restricted areas. Finally, once they learned that it was restricted, they should have eliminated it or at least marked it as restricted. That is where I think it dropped the ball.
Old 12-17-2020, 05:37 AM
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I'm with the OP. CMOR maps are of course just showing bottom relief, but they are marketed specifically for people bottom fishing. It's a little irresponsible for them to include areas that are closed to bottom fishing, especially without a warning. Makes their coverage look better though I'm sure. Ultimately it's up to the operator to know the regs where they are fishing but it's still kind of lame.
Old 12-17-2020, 05:57 AM
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Turn off the shaded relief setting and the info you seek is likely on the raster chart.
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Old 12-17-2020, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by mig888 View Post
Ok, I understand the other side of the argument, I just don’t agree with it. But that is what makes a good debate. Why do I need a chart to provide me bottom detail and relief shading if it is worthless? Don’t you at least agree that CMOR did not research and know this was a restricted area when they spent the time mapping it and added it to the chart? I simply think they did not know it was a prohibited area when they mapped it. Otherwise it’s business model is quite stupid mapping restricted areas. Finally, once they learned that it was restricted, they should have eliminated it or at least marked it as restricted. That is where I think it dropped the ball.
Hey, and I can understand where you are coming from too as I know that was frustrating for you.

When you run the ditch, it is the same thing. You can plot a course and follow the line on the screen, but if you run aground, it is still on you, not the machine. I think they do a good job of showing you the relief but I doubt they get into the other stuff. Plus it is like a new shiny lure. It may or may not catch fish... haha
Old 12-17-2020, 03:01 PM
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It's your responsibility not CMOR's if even the Nav chart providers. Get a copy of the regs and look at it for every new area you go to, to double check the charting and mapping.
Old 12-17-2020, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by kimbrey54 View Post
It's your responsibility not CMOR's if even the Nav chart providers. Get a copy of the regs and look at it for every new area you go to, to double check the charting and mapping.

I agree I am ultimately responsible. I am simply stating that a chart developed, marketed and sold exclusively to bottom fisherman for the sole purpose of fishing should not include area that you are not allowed to fish in, or should at the very least, indicate that the area is restricted. People still are making comments comparing this to a navigational chart. It is not a navigational chart. It is not even a map that can be used for navigation. It contains no longitude or latitude lines and specifically states that it is not for navigating. It is actually a chart of separate “patches” of bottom that is designed to show fisherman potentially good bottom to fish. It’s sole purpose is to provide fisherman mapping of the ocean floor to explore areas to fish in. Below is a picture taken from CMOR’s website which I believe is the target area. It does not contain any indication it is restricted and CMOR’s website states “The high resolution, 3D fishing map unlocks new grounds”. Yes, it may have unlocked “new grounds,” but if those grounds are restricted it is worthless. Just to be clear, the maps are otherwise really good. I have bought 3 of them. The CMOR people are also nice to deal with. I was just disappointed by this.




Last edited by mig888; 12-17-2020 at 04:06 PM.
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Old 12-17-2020, 04:09 PM
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Not sure what plotter your running but Navionics Plat + has the area marked as closed to fishing with relief shading. Your navigation charts should have these areas marked just check the area on that chart before you head offshore. Good information from an unexpected lessons learned. Thanks for sharing.








Last edited by bluewaterpirate; 12-17-2020 at 04:38 PM.
Old 12-17-2020, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by bluewaterpirate View Post
Not sure what plotter your running but Navionics Plat + has the area marked as closed to fishing with relief shading. Your navigation charts should have these areas marked just check the area on that chart before you head offshore. Good information from an unexpected lessons learned. Thanks for sharing.







Yes, I have Navionics + as well and Navionics was responsible and did point out that the area was restricted. CMOR did not. I have learned my lesson— I cannot fully rely on CMOR charts as some of the apparent fishing grounds listed in it are not only useless, but need to be verified by other charts.
Old 12-18-2020, 03:18 AM
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CMORs depth shading is simply NOAA’s data overplayed on a simple raster chart. Turn off shaded relief and the info you seek is on the raster chart.
Old 12-18-2020, 06:15 AM
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I bought a satellite aerial imagery map of my state, so I could see little out of the way ponds, lakes, and hiking and camping areas.
I can't believe the nerve of the company that sold it to me!

They didn't mark the speed limits on all the roads, which areas were private vs govt. owned property, which months deer and turkeys were legal to shoot in all the different zones, or the solunar tables for the best fishing times.

Guess I just bought a useless satellite imagery map.
Old 12-18-2020, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Grunts N Grits View Post
I bought a satellite aerial imagery map of my state, so I could see little out of the way ponds, lakes, and hiking and camping areas.
I can't believe the nerve of the company that sold it to me!

They didn't mark the speed limits on all the roads, which areas were private vs govt. owned property, which months deer and turkeys were legal to shoot in all the different zones, or the solunar tables for the best fishing times.

Guess I just bought a useless satellite imagery map.
Sarcasm.....huh???
Old 12-18-2020, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Grunts N Grits View Post
I bought a satellite aerial imagery map of my state, so I could see little out of the way ponds, lakes, and hiking and camping areas.
I can't believe the nerve of the company that sold it to me!

They didn't mark the speed limits on all the roads, which areas were private vs govt. owned property, which months deer and turkeys were legal to shoot in all the different zones, or the solunar tables for the best fishing times.

Guess I just bought a useless satellite imagery map.
Pretty funny, but apparently you don't (or are incapable of) understanding my point. A better analogy is if you purchased the aerial chart to locate out of the way ponds in which to swim from a company that advertises that they have assembled aerial photos of distant ponds based on the mutual understanding that you intend to swim there. You purchase the photos and drive to one of the ponds on the aerial photo and when you go to swim you are told that swimming has been off limits there for over a decade. Pretty sure you would be a little annoyed too.

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Old 12-18-2020, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by mig888 View Post
Yes, I have Navionics + as well and Navionics was responsible and did point out that the area was restricted. CMOR did not. I have learned my lesson— I cannot fully rely on CMOR charts as some of the apparent fishing grounds listed in it are not only useless, but need to be verified by other charts.
You didn't buy a list of fishing grounds, you bought a relief shading layer for an existing map. David has pointed out twice that the info regarding the closed area is there under that layer and you simply need to turn it off if you want any navigational or special notices. By your first post it seems you are familiar to fishing that area of the Keys and I find it odd that you where not aware of a very well known closed zone. To me I think Cmor did you a favor as I think you will likely be more diligent in your planning and navigational awareness. Navigating around on a colorful bumpy map with no annotations about anything should have been a good clue you needed to switch to a navigation map for reference every once in a while.
Old 12-18-2020, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by kmoose View Post
You didn't buy a list of fishing grounds, you bought a relief shading layer for an existing map. David has pointed out twice that the info regarding the closed area is there under that layer and you simply need to turn it off if you want any navigational or special notices. By your first post it seems you are familiar to fishing that area of the Keys and I find it odd that you where not aware of a very well known closed zone. To me I think Cmor did you a favor as I think you will likely be more diligent in your planning and navigational awareness. Navigating around on a colorful bumpy map with no annotations about anything should have been a good clue you needed to switch to a navigation map for reference every once in a while.
I agree, I have stated that I am ultimately responsible and learned my lesson. I have not gone to my boat to see if I can turn off the relief shading on the CMOR map to see the underlying map and restrictions. I have used CMOR Maps for over three years and did not see that option or realize you can turn off the shading. I am not sure that is correct, but if it is, I will acknowledge it.

Also, I was not aware that this was a closed zone--it is 50 miles from my home base. You say it is well known, but FWC told me I was the 5th boat that day that was fishing in the area so apparently I am not the only one out there that was unaware.

Last edited by mig888; 12-18-2020 at 09:35 AM.
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