Some advice for boaters, specifically in the Campbell River area. Note that any advice is general, and may not be applicable in your situation. Also, consult the latest regulations for any updates.
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Swinging the Compass
Your compass may not get used much in the GPS world, but it is an essential backup in poor visibility. If you are not aware of compass errors, it could lead you onto the rocks.
Black Water (Sewage)
Distance at Sea
When should you call Coast Guard for help?
Marine Distress Flares
Automatic Identification System
Why doesn't Red Right Returning work for Discovery Passage?
Digital Charts and Chart Plotting
OpenCPN, open source chart plotting software. (link to external site)
OpenCPN's Instructions for installing OpenCPN. (link to external site)
If you are taking the Boating course, we will provide the password to open an electronic copy of the CPS practice chart. The zipped file is 2.5megs, and will download immediately, without further confirmation. Immediately download zip file. Check your download folder after clicking the link. Instructions for installing the practice chart are included in the .zip file.
If you wish to compare raster and vector charts. Canadian Hydrographic Services offers two more free electronic charts of another made up area. The link is http://www.charts.gc.ca/charts-cartes/instruction-formation-eng.html.
The US has decided to offer all their digital charts for free, as a safety service. You can also download them from here https://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/find-charts.html.
(If you think that Canadians should also be able to get free copies of already produced charts, to enhance marine safety, you might want to let your MP know.)
Saving Money when boating
Charts and Publications
Cold Water Shock
Sharing the channels
Oceanography of the British Columbia Coast by Richard E. Thompson - an excellent book that covers geography of the coast, tides, waves, currents and much more. Now available as a PDF download on our links page.
As mentioned in the article, wind driven waves interacting with current can have a major effect on sea conditions. A great, free, introduction to weather, the National Marine Weather Guide, is available as a PDF on our links page. The companion book, British Columbia Regional Guide (also available as a PDF on our links page) looks at individual areas, such as Desolation Sound, explaining how local geography comes into play.