thanks for all the information boaters on the draft.   Now I have another question has any body traveled the inter coastal water way and then across ochachoee waterway to fort Meyers Florida are all sounds marked good to cross them to stay in the inter coastal way

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Yes, I've done it even on a 47. Markings are all in place, plenty of GPS charts have all depths clearly marked, but depending on recent rainfall and time of year, you may need to wait till high tide to cross certain areas.

ok thanks so my only concern is crossing the sounds are they marked to stay in the intercostal while crossing them and what about okeechobee cross the lake is it marked from one side to the other sorry this is going to be my first trip and just trying to [plan it correctly

hello has any one out there used the new garmin chart plotters with the GPS and the new audio guidance and g2 vision cards that track on the screen like a GPS does while driving a car if so which one do you recommend to buy thanks

Personally I would stay away from garmin stuff they stop supporting it after a few years whereas you can still get the current charts for everything else. It seems to be a move to make you buy a new one. Always had good luck with Raymarine, although it's pricier than Garmin, they say no a lot less than Garmin when you need new charts or need repairs to a unit.

I have a Garmin 741xs that I bought the Vision card for the area’s I boat. The vision card unlocks auto guidance. It works well for trips, I used it going up to Mackinac and down to Put-in -bay. It will find the shortest route for the draft and bridge clearance you set. It doesn’t work well where I mainly boat as the charted depths are often shallower than my draft, but the water is always higher than charted here, this year the water level was 4’ over charted. There’s also a ferry that the gps thinks is a bridge with not charted height so it avoids that channel. The 741 and newer chart plotters just take micro sd cards so I don’t see an issue updating in the future, esspecially since Garmin bought Navtronics this year.

The format of the card isn’t the issue. All Garmin charts are proprietary, when garmin stops the updates usually after 5 years, you can’t use them from another source. If you have another plotter that takes navionics or jeppesen C-Maps or something, you can always get updates. They publish new charts every year.

I know that older models used special cards that only fit those models. I know that the cards for my 741 which is an older generation now is compatible with the current generation so maybe they’re not purposly out dating their equipment anymore. If they do, they do. Not much has changed around here in a few decades. Btw I wouldn’t just count on being able to get charts because you can use navionics because Garmin owns that now who know what they’ll do with it.

Chris Wickersham said:

The format of the card isn’t the issue. All Garmin charts are proprietary, when garmin stops the updates usually after 5 years, you can’t use them from another source. If you have another plotter that takes navionics or jeppesen C-Maps or something, you can always get updates. They publish new charts every year.

Tim, maybe I'm confused which is typical of me. I'm now technically an old Geezer but my cruising guide for the Southern U.S. shows the Cocohatchee River down in Naples and doesn't take you across the state to Ft. Myers from the east coast.

However, if you're going to transit the Caloosahatchee River & canal starting at Stuart or Port St. Lucie canal on the East Coast to Ft. Myers, you may want to purchase the Waterway Guide for the Southern U.S.  It covers the entire state of Florida and follows the Gulf Intercoastal Waterway (GIWW) down to Brownsville, TX.  I can scan the map of the entire route across Florida with towns and the locks you'd be going through if you want. I'd scan it now but I'm afraid I'd lose this message in the process.  Just let me know and I'll copy the map,  and a page with mini-chart and table of dockage, supplies and marine services.

You can order the guides you need from waterwayguide.com.  This buys you email updates of changes, alerts and warnings regarding navigation issues.

This cruising guide gives you all the good info you need; dockage lengths, fuel, marinas, dining, food, nav info.  These guides are used by the "Loopers"...those lucky folks that have the time and $$$ to do the Great Loop that runs the entire eastern half of the country.

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