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Whitestone

Paper Map Versus Gps

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At our company, we have had 6 violations with different pilots flying through Alberta due to non recognition of correct MF or crossing the edge of a restricted zone.

 

Two of the incorrect MF frequency fines were due to using an expired CFS (one edition) and missing the new frequency.

 

The restricted zone is right along the highway going into Medicine hat.

 

Fines have been $750 and $1000. CFS are issued to all aircraft. They just don't always get there on time.

 

Pilots are expected have current charts and use them. We are all repaid for charts on expense accounts. If we get a TC enforcement fine it is then our responsibility to pay it.

 

When out in the bush, I may be able to manage on a GPS most of the time but we all come back to an airport sometime. And guess what batteries die and so do GPS. The trick is for me not to as well.

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Interesting replies so far, and here's some trivia for you.

What you guys are talking about are actually charts, not maps.

 

A map does not have lines drawn on it portraying latitude and longitude, though degrees of lat and long may be listed on the edges of a map. Therefore it is harder to plot one's position or calculate a direct route on a map.

 

A map has pre-determined routes on it such as roads and railways.

 

A chart has parallels of latitude and meridians of longitude drawn on it so that you can calculate your position and plan your own route. Boats and aircraft use charts because they are not restricted to the routes of existing roads.

 

Personally, I use a chart more as I get closer to a big city/terminal area, especially in the US.

 

Before take-off, for fuel/leg planning in Canada I use an online planner such as,

http://www.ece.unb.ca/cgi-bin/tervo/flying/list2.pl

In the U.S. I use,

http://www.airnav.com/plan/fuel/

 

Very nice tool..

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I am surprised that it is even a question...GPS or Maps. I always have a map, the GPS just confirms to me what I already know on the map. Bad weather in the Rockies or anywhere with no map is not an option.

 

I am truly shocked when I crew a machine out on Baffin Island and I ask the pilot for the maps, and he says I only have the GPS...WTF? let me get this straight, you flew across the territories, across Nunavit and up through Whale Cove and across Baffin with no maps and one GPS??

 

I recall picking up a 500 and flying it across Canada once, I asked the chief before I left if the maps where in the machine, he answered "well it got out there didn't it?" When I arrived to pick up the machine in Dryden, I found a McNally's road map from about 1988. It looked almost like a place mat map from a husky truck stop restaurant.

 

Digital world full of texting ipod this iwhatever apple app this, app it all map Garmin whatever bla bla bla......

 

All to have it fail, and you are ifuc^ed,

 

 

nothing replaces a good old VNC,

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Sirlandsalot, why are you so surprised by such a question? I know lots of pilots who either don't use a GPS (afraid of the technology?) or use a GPS exclusively and don't even bring "Charts" (thank you, Over-Talk) but most use both or at least take both out with them.

 

I like the VNC map (oops) chart because it gives a "bigger picture" view so you can look at/plan longer flights or diversions and it does not loose all the detail like you do when you zoom out with a GPS but like the GPS for features like distance and time to next, sunset, UTM, off track, ground speed, recording track and on and on. For me the GPS has become a "comfort factor" as well as a useful tool. Learning to use both together makes you a better pilot but i will never put away my charts when flying in unfamiliar territory. One thing i do like is planning flights on my computer and then transferring the data to my GPS, much easier than trying to draw a line on a chart that goes over onto the next one beside it and from that getting distance and then getting out the E6B, what a pain. Of course in the case of a long flight you have no choice but i have not always done that. I will admit that i don't always navigate with a chart but they sit next to me folded appropriately (bad pilot! but it's difficult to munch on beef jerky and hold/fold a chart and fly!). Also saving old data and having it there if you need it again in the future is nice. (all backed up of course)

 

There was a fellow that mentioned having "multiple GPS's fail multiple times", holy cow, i have not had one failure but did like i said have the battery die on me once but i knew it was coming (somewhat inaccurate power count down timer feature) and knew that i was close to the airport so it did not catch me unaware. The fact that i had my charts and CFS and planned my flight on paper the night before i knew that the airport had ARCAL and at least as of that morning it was working. So if we can agree on something it is that Paper and GPS together make a good team. Have to agree with H56, nothing beats a VTA chart for flying into big city airport. Sirlandsalot i had to laugh about your 500 ferry story, i was once greeted with an Alberta road map and told "hey, it worked for me" by the pilot i was taking over for. I now try to carry my own maps.

 

I wonder if somewhere in the past sitting in the shadow of a pyramid a grandfather and grandson had a conversation that went something like this. "but Grandpa, i like the papyrus maps (no lines at that time, lol) they are so convenient, you can roll them up and they are SO light!" Grandpa replies: "No Grandson, just look at how flimsy they are, nothing will ever replace the good old granite tablet, it's solid and if it gets wet it won't get soft and mushy and look, the granite can't blow away in the wind!" The more things change... lol

 

Hope others chime in with their thoughts, ideas and story's.

 

Interesting to hear about the fines for incursion into restricted airspace and for not using correct frequencies.

 

Thanks.

 

W.

 

PS: Also, once i got back stabbed/ratted out by one of our "pioneers of industry" but because i had saved my track to my GPS and loaded it to my computer and showed it to the boss it saved my bacon! Thank you GPS and up yours you grumpy old SOB

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Sirlandsalot, why are you so surprised by such a question? I know lots of pilots who either don't use a GPS (afraid of the technology?) or use a GPS exclusively and don't even bring "Charts" (thank you, Over-Talk) but most use both or at least take both out with them.

 

I thought the answer was obvious, just as obvious as using a GPS and map together if available. I just meant that if you had to choose.....a map should be the obvious answer, and if a pilot can not deal with that, then maybe he/she should brush up on their navigation.

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I agree with you 100% sirlandsalot. I thought the answer was obvious as well. I have had a chart with a track-line marked on it for every x-country flight I have done for the last 20 years. I had a junior pilot ask me the other day (on a dual x-country through the mountains to the coast) if I used a map or GPS. I told him my opinion... the Garmin 100 I used for years was always offline. In fact it only aquired satellites long enough for you to get yourself lost without a chart on your leg...especially in weather.

Now I realize that my shiny new 500 with the latest topo charts loaded onto it probably wont fail. But probably is not enough for me. I'll always stick with a chart...

Oh, and Skully I think you are correct, it is still law.

 

hg12

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I have to agree with most of you. You should always carry maps, out of date GPS data bases are not legal. GPS's when use correctly can be a terrific safety enhancer.

Also require CFS. For those who are sticklers read the ACP manual for doing PPC's. Maps and CFS must be on board.

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Charts and GPS both for sure. And spare batteries although I usually can tap into ship's power or the company unit is usually hardwired. As does Whitestone,I usually do cross-country planning with the Garmin or other software and upload it to the GPS. May print the output for reference also.

 

Recently I was dispatched to Arizona to pick up a Hughes 500. It was planned as a two ship ferry with the US pilot in the lead heading North. Our map package of course got lost but he said I didn't need to bother with any maps as he would bird dog me all the way. Of course it wasn't too long before he was out of sight in the Astar and my ship developed radio problems. However, I had purchased a bundle of maps anyway and had preloaded the route on my personal GPS so still fumbled my way along without great incident.

 

One thing I've definitely learned is to supply all your own s**t, depending on other people is often disappointing. "Expect less, you won't be disappointed!"

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I was trying to foster a discussion about the pros and cons of using either or both rather than having people state that they think it's obvious. Was hoping that there would be a few more contributions for the "WHY" of it. Some of your stories and experiences illustrate that electronic technology is not infallible and following the rules is not only smart, it's the law. "Obvious" might be something for those who have been at this a while but i was hoping to get some of the more senior hands to share their experiences for newer members beyond just saying "duh, of course you should use both!", that's not very useful. Thank you to those who have shared your insights. I used to be one of those chart only guys and have only had a lap top and other associated tech "stuff" since about '06, glad i took the leap though. I was borrowing a portable GPS unit from a fixed wing friend but recently found one of my own so will be returning it, there still seem to be a few of the Garmin X96 series out there floating around.

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