On the Water With C-MAP

Use All The Tools Your Charts Have to Offer

As a former delivery skipper and current Dockmaster at the Buffalo Yacht Club, Paul Van Voorhees has some good advice to offer cruising sailors that share his passion for exploring the waters of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River.  Aboard his 28-foot Hinterhoeller sloop Orion, Van Voorhees counts on his Standard Horizon CP-390i and C-MAP MAX charts to guide him on voyages ranging from day trips to multi-day voyages.

Van Voorhees finds the “Value Added Data” in his charts just as important as the charts themselves to his boating lifestyle.   “The aerial photos are very impressive and I use them all the time to gain situational awareness,” he says.  On a typical hazy Lake Ontario summer afternoon, it can be hard to make out visual references on shore, he explains, and he uses the C-MAP photos on his plotter to help verify what he sees with his eyes and his vessel’s position.

Van Voorhees also relies heavily on the of Ports and Facilities information included in the charts, and is surprised when he sees other boaters not taking advantage of this.  “It’s all there on the plotter — facility names, phone numbers, hours.  When we’ve got two couples aboard and we’re a few hundred miles from home, this information helps us get a hold of where we’re headed, know what’s available for us there, confirm our reservations, etc.”  Having one less thing to stress about makes cruising far from home more relaxing.

According to Van Voorhees, he also loves being able to sail into a new marina with chart details right down to the dock and slip he’s heading for.    This type of knowledge can make any boating adventure easier.