Cruise Planning Tools – At Home, At the Dock or Underway

September 6, 2012

A great tool to use either when planning a cruise or a quick visit to another harbor is “Active Captain”. An online program, Active Captain integrates NOAA charts, a Bing map, Satellite pictures or a Hybrid view mix of satellite and map data all with colored markers into an Interactive Cruising Guidebook. The color coded markers indicate: Red - marinas, yacht clubs, boat yards, other commercial docking and fuel facilities. Green - anchorages and free docks. Blue - local knowledge: bridges, locks, dams, ferries, inlets, boat ramps, marine stores, towing services, shopping facilities, and airports. Yellow/orange - hazards. Click on any marker and an info window opens with data about the object.  For marinas, this includes general info that you might find in any cruising guide, plus Navigation info (depths at docks and approach depths), Dockage info (including rates and a date the rate was checked), Fuel availability (again with pricing and date) Services (pets, disability access, pump out, ice, etc) and Reviews (submitted by real registered users with dates).

The most interesting aspect of the site is that users can submit additions, modifications and corrections to the data that is reviewed, edited and posted by the site editor. Similar to the “Marina Life” Chart Viewer in application, Active Captain loads much faster and doesn’t try to add buoys as an overlay (which slows Marina Life to a crawl) however Marina Life includes an online slip booking application, a magazine, insurance, etc. So, when planning your next daytrip or cruise, give Active Captain a try. Interactive and current, it picks up where cruising guide books leave off. For additional cruising planning info………….. Click Here Active Captain; Marina Life; By Capt. Rick Delfosse     203-216-7800

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