/ pilot books / cruising guides often have the best "maps" of anchorages
. However some of the ideal anchorages
are not listed in these guides. If the wind
is strong, or the season is busy often the best spots are found by with lots of maps and a bit of research
. Multiple chart sources are often a help.
Even with some well established anchorages in out of the way places some maps are woefully inaccurate and several sources of mapping information are are invaluable in deciding where to anchor
for the night.
Given the low cost of several alternative electronic systems it is sensible to have several sources of information.
Unfortunately the pilot books and cruising guides can be very expensive for a cruising sailor that only spends a short time in each location, but the information is generally worth the cost.
In the area I am in at the moment I have 3 cruising guides/ pilot books, 4 types of electronic maps, google earth
and some other Internet
resources and a few of paper charts.
Surprisingly this information from these conflicting sources can be very different, particularly away from well established areas that large ships might use.
In general I like to review most of these resources when making a passage
plan and particularly deciding on a suitable anchorage at the end of the sail.
Some of the most useful resources, like google earth
, are rarely considered, but can be the most useful.
For example finding weed free areas to anchor
in the Med google
earth is best resource, followed by pilot books. Charts are of very limited value.
There is a perception on these forums that these "unofficial, unauthorised" sources are to avoided, but they are used frequently and with good effect by cruising sailors worldwide.