There are, or used to be, a series of large-scale paper charts specifically for ocean passages. You could mark your passage
on them without all the distractions of wind
roses and other clutter that the pilot charts sport. With the right one of these, and one or two charts of your destination
, you could be all set for an Atlantic crossing
. Personally, I'd have at least some chart coverage of the whole eastern caribbean
and the coast of S. America, just in case I decided to make landfall elsewhere than originally planned (this has happened to me more than once--weather, circumstance, and whimsy being what they are, it's good to keep options open.)
There also exist some beautiful great circle sailing charts--I have one of the entire Atlantic Ocean--that are meant for passage
planning and on which you could plot your position, and which record
all significant rocks and obstructions.
The reason for the disclaimer on the pilot charts is because their primary purpose is not course plotting, but weather information. If someone were to pile up on, say, St. Paul's rocks there in mid-atlantic, and try and grouse that they couldn't see them on the chart because of the clutter of wind
roses and what-all, the publishers could say: "We told you not to try and navigate with these, fool!" and not get sued.
It's the same as a screwdriver. They're not meant for opening paint
cans, but everybody uses them for that. If you know what you're doing you can open cans all day without damaging the lid. But it's still not the tool's intended use. Same with pilot charts. Personally, I'd hate to mark up my nice pilot atlas with pencil marks, since I intend to use it again and again (I also make my paper chart markings as discreet as possible to avoid confusion on future passages.)
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