Louisiana Sportsman
Gentle RainProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Venice in Southeast Louisiana
Rewarding Uncle
Captain Paul, I am a native of Louisiana currently living in Texas. I have a Texas registered 28' boat with twin 300 Verados joystick steering. Want to tow the boat to Venice to take my uncle fishing offhsore for tuna (Thunder Horse, Diana, Hoover coordinates if you have them). I am repaying my uncle for teaching me to fish and taking me whenever I wanted to go. I am familiar....  Read More
May 17 at 9:23am
Boston911Profile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Vermilion Bay in South Central Louisiana
Capt. Paul, there is a area outside of Vermilion Bay in the Tiger Shoals area called The Pelican. Do you have any information or coordinates for this place?
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
May 16 at 12:23am
I haven\'t forgot about your request.
I haven't forgotten your request, but I have been unable to find a specific platform called The Pelican.

I am still trying. In the meantime here is a copy of one of my recent columns on the Tiger Shoals area.

Old oil structures in Tiger Shoal

A lesson on finding productive fishing

Captain Paul Titus

September 08, 2014 at 9:00 am | Mobile Reader | Print

It might take some work, but research into the Tiger Shoal area is well worth the effort.

Ann Taylor

Dear Capt. Paul:

I am told that there were several oil platforms, old well heads and/or other oil-field sites within the Tiger Shoal area that have been removed in years past.

I am interested to know if you have the coordinates for some of these sites and their removal dates(or estimated dates)? My reason is that I’m assuming there is still some sort of rock or shell pad left behind that might be good for fishing.

— Thank you

Capt. Paul’s response:

Wow! M-12, you are asking for detailed positions of over 200 well sites/platforms in the Tiger Shoals area.

This shoal area is about 10 miles south-southwest from the Southwest Pass of Vermillion Bay at a bearing of 201 degrees magnetic. It is a shoal area that appears on maps as a large banana laying in an east-to-west position.

There are numerous well sites, as well as wrecks and underwater mounds throughout the area.

I do not have the time nor the space to adequately provide you with all of the information you need, but I will provide some of the major sites and steer you in a direction that you can obtain all of the information you need.

The United States coastline is divided into areas that are called leased block areas. These areas are usually named for a feature along the coast or an underwater geological feature. These leased areas are then divided into blocks, each of which is usually rectangular in shape and specified by latitude and longitude using North American Datum of 1927.

Yes, I know, the current World Geodetic System of 1984 (WGS 84) datum is more accurate, but the leases were determined years ago using the older NAD 27 datum. I was told by U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement people that it would be a nearly impossible task to amend all of the hundreds of thousands of leases with the WGS datum.

New leases are now plotted in both NAD 27 and WGS 84 Datum.

As there are no sign posts in offshore waters, specific areas are called by their leased area and block number, such as Vermilion 50, meaning block 50 in the Vermilion Bay area.

First you will need a rough idea where these different sites are located. By that I mean in which of leased blocks your quests are located.

The location of the specific block number in the leased area will put you in the general area where the platforms are located. The government then conducts lease sales for the right to explore and produce minerals from these lease blocks.

All platforms are required to be listed by BOEMRE, the federal repository for lease data, and the exploration and production information for these areas. It is like a general grid system that will at least get you close to the area of your concern. They keep current and past well sites in a very detailed format.

The genesis of your search should start with the maps or charts that show these leased blocks. NOAA Marine Chart 1116A Leased Block for the Mississippi River to Galveston, Texas, shows the BOEMRE leased areas and blocks within those areas.

For those of you who fish the mouth of the Mississippi River eastward, get NOAA Marine Chart 1115A Leased Block for Cape St. George, Fla., to Mississippi River Passes.

After locating the leased block areas in which you are interested, you should also get a copy of the latest NOAA chart for the specific area in 1:80,000 scale.

The Tiger Shoals area is shown on NOAA Marine CHART 11349-Vermillion Bay and Approaches. This chart will show individual platforms, underwater mounds, wrecks and other navigation features. The chart also shows underwater pipelines designated by a series of dots followed immediately with a small line.

When getting these charts, be sure to get the latest version. But historic charts created 10 years or so age would also be a great value to you, as they would show wells/platforms as they were then.

Almost any NOAA contract chart mapping service that has a print-on-demand service should be able to provide you with these charts.

You can then access the Management, Regulation and Enforcement website at http://www.data.boem.gov/homepg/data_center/platform/platform/master.asp, and search by leased area, by leased block and well number or well name. You can even search for the date when the well was closed or removed.

By noting the leased areas, you can select a specific area and even individual blocks existing leases and or platforms. This program is a very valuable tool for the offshore fisherman.

After defining the area/block you are interested in the program will display all of the platforms in that area or block. They mostly just have a number of the platform, but sometimes indicate the common or given name of the facility, i.e., Brutus, Ram Powell, etc. Position figures are usually stated in decimal degrees determined by using NAD 27 datum.

Once you have these positions, you can then enter them manually into your GPS unit.

Again, remember that the position format in your program or GPS unit, must agree with the MMS format or you must convert the decimal degrees into the format used in your unit or temporarily change the position format in your GPS unit to decimal degrees and NAD 27 datum. Then enter the positions, and change the position format and datum back to the one that you normally use. The internal GPS software will do the conversion for you. This is extremely important when trying to find an underwater site that has no surface landmark.

By selecting the specific areas, you will have all of the existing or removed platforms in that leased block

I have taken the opportunity to plot some of the over 200 rigs and platforms in the area you indicated.

Most of the platforms are or were located in North Marsh Island blocks 208, 209, 210, 212, 230, 231, 232, 234, 235, 236, 237 and 239, and Vermilion blocks 30, 31,33, 50, 51, 52, 53, 69, 70 and 71.

As previously stated, the area is crossed with numerous pipelines that also offer fishing structure. These pipelines are shown in the Vermillion Bay Approaches chart.

Here are some of the wells and other hazardous objects in the Tiger Shoal. The names of the sites indicate the feature available for fishing.

Name Latitude Longitude

Mound 01 29° 26.4423´ N 092° 06.2012´ W

Mound 02 29° 25.6454´ N 092° 05.6919´ W

Mound 03 29° 25.2642´ N 092° 06.2803´ W

Mound 04 29° 24.9089´ N 092° 06.7305´ W

Mound 05 29° 24.5624´ N 092° 06.9185´ W

Mound 06 29° 24.3068´ N 092° 06.8940´ W

Mound 07 29° 23.8647´ N 092° 06.7358´ W

Mound 08 29° 23.3362´ N 092° 07.1958´ W

Mound 09 29° 23.0718´ N 092° 07.2305´ W

Tiger 01 29° 26.8278´ N 092° 11.6187´ W

Tiger 02 29° 26.9014´ N 092° 11.7817´ W

Tiger 03 29° 26.8883´ N 092° 11.5396´ W

Tiger 04 29° 26.9187´ N 092° 10.3965´ W

Tiger 06 29° 26.6199´ N 092° 10.5898´ W

Tiger 07 29° 26.7021´ N 092° 10.1196´ W

Tiger 08 29° 26.3384´ N 092° 11.7026´ W

Tiger 09 29° 26.0828´ N 092° 11.5298´ W

Tiger 10 29° 25.9745´ N 092° 11.2822´ W

Tiger 11 29° 26.2733´ N 092° 10.1294´ W

Tiger 12 29° 26.5203´ N 092° 09.0806´ W

Tiger 13 29° 26.0741´ N 092° 09.5410´ W

Tiger 14 29° 26.7802´ N 092° 04.7271´ W

Tiger 15 29° 26.9534´ N 092° 04.8853´ W

Tiger 17 29° 27.0312´ N 092° 04.8359´ W

Tiger 18 29° 26.7931´ N 092° 04.8457´ W

Tiger 19 29° 26.7844´ N 092° 04.5044´ W

Tiger 20 29° 26.8927´ N 092° 04.6924´ W

Tiger 21 29° 26.5852´ N 092° 04.7915´ W

Tiger 22 29° 26.2733´ N 092° 04.7964´ W

Tiger 23 29° 26.0741´ N 092° 05.1079´ W

Tiger 24 29° 26.3470´ N 092° 05.1523´ W

Tiger 25 29° 26.0698´ N 092° 06.3301´ W

Tiger 26 29° 26.3773´ N 092° 04.1431´ W

Tiger 27 29° 26.4727´ N 092° 03.7080´ W

Tiger 28 29° 26.8711´ N 092° 03.9355´ W

Tiger 28 29° 26.6459´ N 092° 04.0146´ W

Tiger 29 29° 27.1829´ N 092° 03.4014´ W

Tiger 30 29° 27.8237´ N 092° 04.2520´ W

Tiger 31 29° 26.8104´ N 092° 03.3418´ W

Tiger 33 29° 27.7112´ N 092° 03.7476´ W

Tiger 34 29° 28.8455´ N 092° 04.0542´ W

Tiger 35 29° 27.9883´ N 092° 03.1440´ W

Wreck 01 29° 26.4769´ N 092° 04.4995´ W

Wreck 02 29° 24.2634´ N 092° 01.0312´ W

Wreck 03 29° 27.9796´ N 092° 05.0142´ W

Wreck 04 29° 23.4315´ N 092° 06.6963´ W

Wreck 05 29° 28.4905´ N 092° 06.6860´ W

Wreck 06 29° 22.5908´ N 092° 03.7178´ W

Wreck 07 29° 28.5511´ N 092° 07.5767´ W

Unless otherwise specified, all of my positions are stated as Degrees, minutes and thousandths of minutes (DDD,MM.mmmm) and were determined using WGS 84 datum. All bearings and courses are stated in magnetic degrees and statute miles.

— Capt. Paul
May 08 at 9:32am
IDLEWILDMANProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Southeast Louisiana
Narrowed it down to the Lowrance Elite-4 Chirp or the Garmin 43 DV. Same cost @ 300.00, any opinions on these units??????
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
May 16 at 12:20am
It is a toss up, but.....
Either could serve you, if it has the mapping software you need. Check out what maps are available for each unit. You may have to go to a stocking dealer to actually see the images, but it is a wise move on your part.

If you had a Garmin unit and you got another Garmin, you would not have to learn another system.

Please Let me know what you finally choose.

Captain Paul
May 11 at 12:25pm
IDLEWILDMANProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Myrtle Grove / Port Sulphur in Southeast Louisiana
I am in the market for a new GPS. I would primarily use it for fishing. My budget is around 200.00-250.00 dollars. I have an older Garmin eTrex but i would like something with a larger screen. I also have the Garmin Mapsource software that I bought years ago. What do you recommend?
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
May 06 at 2:16pm
TRY the Garmin GPSMAP 64ST
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ Idlewildman ~

You will be hard pressed to find a new GPS unit for that price that has a larger screen.

Being you have a Garmin, I would stay with a Garmin system, as you would not have to relearn the nomenclature of another brand.

The closest thing to meeting your price range would be a Garmin model GPSMAP 64. I would order it with the option of having preloaded topographical maps. I believe that it is the GPSMAP 64st model. The ST means that it has sensors and topo mapping.

It will put you a little above your listed spending, but it is a super unit and would give you most if not all the maps you would need.

Check it out on the Garmin web site at www.garmin.com

Unless otherwise specified, all positions are stated as Degrees, minutes and thousandths of minutes (DDD,MM.mmm) and were determined using WGS 84 Datum. All bearings and courses are stated in Magnetic degrees.

~ Captain Paul ~
1 of 1 Comment(s) [ View All ]
May 04 at 11:45pm
Wild BillProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Leeville / Golden Meadow in Southeast Louisiana
Capt. Paul: I am just now getting to know my Garmin 541s and learn about navigation, attempting to manually load some waypoints you had in the last edition of La. Sportsman. The unit is set for WGS 84 and the waypoints you provided were in that format, but the unit does not allow the decimal between the minutes and thousandths of minutes. Exposing my lack of knowledge, but does this matter....  Read More
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Response by Captain Paul
May 06 at 1:49pm
Wrong Position Format?
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ Wild Bill ~

Two of the least understood terms in the GPS settings are DATUM and the Position Format.

You seem to have the DATUM correct using the WGS 84 settings, but I suspect that Position Format or “Location” settings are not the same.

In latitude~ longitude settings, you usually have the choice of Decimal degrees, ie. 89.1234567° (DDD.ddddddd), Degrees, minutes and tenths of seconds, ie. DDD,MM,SS.s (89°20’ 15.8”) and Degrees, minutes and thousandths of minutes, ie. DDD, MM.mmm (89°20.123).

By your description, it seems that you are trying to enter one of these position formats into another format.

To correct the procedure, you will have to mathematically convert one to another, OR simply change the GPS Position Format setting to match the one you have.

Try this out and get back with me.

Unless otherwise specified, all positions are stated as Degrees, minutes and thousandths of minutes (DDD,MM.mmm) and were determined using WGS 84 Datum. All bearings and courses are stated in Magnetic degrees.

~ Captain Paul ~
May 04 at 6:19pm
Captain PaulProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Fourchon / Grand Isle in Southeast Louisiana
Photo Album
Rock pile near wd 152
Captain paul im looling for some cordinates to the rock pile just west of west delta 152. If you could get them for me id really appreciate

Thanks

~ Captain Paul's response ~

I don’t have a specific location named “The Rock Pile”, but I do see a jagged bottom rise from a depth of 248 fathoms (1488 feet) to a depth of 69 fathoms (419 feet) on my....  Read More
April 21 at 1:22pm
crankbaitsProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Fourchon / Grand Isle in Southeast Louisiana
Captain paul im looling for some cordinates to the rock pile just west of west delta 152. If you could get them for me id really appreciate

Thanks
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
April 21 at 1:20pm
The ROCK PILE
~ Captain Paul's response ~

I don’t have a specific location named “The Rock Pile”, but I do see a jagged bottom rise from a depth of 248 fathoms (1488 feet) to a depth of 69 fathoms (419 feet) on my contour charts of the area. This location is a very prominent rise in the sea bed that is located at or about a position of 28° 32.981’N ~ 89°55.807’W, which is about 14 miles at a bearing of 260° from a platform (28°35.281’N ~ 89°41.898’ W) which is located in WEST DELTA Leased Block 152. This platform is about 27.5 miles at a bearing of 218° from the mouth of South West Pass of the Mississippi River.

The feature I located is in Mississippi Canyon (MC) Leased block 397.

As said, I don’t know if this is the site you are looking for, but it stands out as a large formation. Farther westward the bottom drops to 210 fathoms then has a gradual rise to 41 then to 33 fathoms.

Hope this helps,

Captain Paul
April 19 at 11:53pm
Hoosier DaddyProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Fourchon / Grand Isle in Southeast Louisiana
Ever hear of a spot called the propane bowl or propane tank about 70 miles due south of Belle Pass and a few deg to the west? Was talking with a gentleman about a nice grouper hole. If you happen to have info on it, please message me. Would like to find it and give it a shot. Anybody care to share any info on other grouper spots?
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
April 03 at 7:40pm
The Propane Bowl.
I could NOT find a specific location that is officially called the Propane Bowl south of Belle Pass.

However, there is a double rig structure that is ownen by Matathron Oil called 'LOBSTER' that is 69 miles at a bearing of 179* from the mouth of Belle Pass in the Gulf of Mexico. It is in the Leased Block # 873 of the EWING BANK (EW)Area at or about 28°06.1924’ N ~ 90°12.0454’ W longitude. The site is listed as a 24hr 7 day a week work site and is listed as a 'Collection/Processing Site.' There are numerous under water pipelines that 'feed' the structure from other wells llisted in the area. It is shown on NOAA Chart 1116A Leased Blocks Ms River to Galveston, TX to be in about 120 fathoms of water.

I can't guarantee that this is the location you are looking for. This is a pretty far piece to run on a goose chase if it not correct.

I am still looking, and trying to contact some of my offshore frients to see if they have any additional info.

Any additional info will be posted on this site,

Captain Paul
March 30 at 8:52pm
pmcdanielProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in South Central Louisiana
Captain Paul, I have a Lowrance Elite 7. I want to know if I can purchase one of you waypoint files for an area and then directly download onto my micro-chip and then put chip in Lowrance. Thanks!
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
April 03 at 7:15pm
EDGE to Lowrance unit
The safest way is to use the Lowrance data transfer program called INSIGHT PLANNER.

Some GPS unit operating software will let you copy the Lowrance .usb file onto a spare data card and then transfer it into the internal waypoint memory of a unit.

But,you should get Lowrance’s data transfer program they call INSIGHT PLANNER. This program can be found as a “For Sale” item on the Lowrance web site in their mapping section. The program allows you to safely transfer data between a SPARE memory card your computer and your GPS unit. This data program is included in their INSIGHT Mapping programs or as a stand alone as the PLANNER version.

Basically, you save the file to a folder in your computer, open the INSIGHT program and import the file into the program. Once there you can edit the data, add additional, or delete waypoints, routes, and track data.

By using the INSIGHT program, it ensures that the data is in the proper format for the GPS unit. However, depending on the version of the operating software in your unit, you may be able to just copy the .usr or the .gpx file directly to a spare memory card. To test this type of transfer without the Insight program, place a spare memory card in your GPS unit and transfer (save) the waypoints to the memory card. Then, place the card in your card reader and view the file suffix file (.gpx or .usr) on the card. Then copy the corresponding Edge file to your card.

The Edge file has a READ ME and an instruction file in Word format that will assist you in getting the Edge data into your GPS unit.

Contact me if you need any additional information.

~ Captain Paul~
April 02 at 9:28pm
mike the tigreProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Southeast Louisiana
Do you or anyone know where to get video info to use (instructional video) for this unit? Also can GPS coordinates or waypoints be taken from google earth and put on sds card then entered in this unit??????
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
March 26 at 9:38pm
Google earth waypoints to Lowrance units
I do not know of any CD or DVD that offers an instruction in the use of that unit.

I can accommodate you if you wish. If so contact me at captainpaultgps@gmail.com

Check the post that asks basically the same question or my Story in the current issue of the Louisiana Sportsmam Magazine concerning Google Earth waypoints.

Captain Paul
1 of 1 Comment(s) [ View All ]
March 26 at 10:32am
Skeeter 69Profile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Cocodrie / DuLarge in South Central Louisiana
I have the Elite 7 HDI. What Edge download will I need for it to work on my GPS. The Lowrance-Eagle of the generic GPX File. Thanks for your help.
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
March 24 at 1:23pm
EDGE for a Lowrance system
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ Skeeter ~

Either file should work with your Lowrance data transfer program. The Edge for Lowrance systems has both the .gpx file and the Lowrance .usr files.

You should get Lowrance’s data transfer program they call INSIGHT PLANNER. This program can be found as a “For Sale” item on the Lowrance web site in their mapping section. The program allows you to safely transfer data between a SPARE memory card your computer and your GPS unit. This data program is included in their INSIGHT Mapping programs or as a stand alone as the PLANNER version.

Basically, you save the file to a folder in your computer, open the INSIGHT program and import the file into the program. Once there you can edit the data, add additional, or delete waypoints, routes, and track data.

By using the INSIGHT program, it ensures that the data is in the proper format for the GPS unit. However, depending on the version of the operating software in your unit, you may be able to just copy the .usr or the .gpx file directly to a spare memory card. To test this type of transfer without the Insight program, place a spare memory card in your GPS unit and transfer (save) the waypoints to the memory card. Then, place the card in your card reader and view the file suffix file (.gpx or .usr) on the card. Then copy the corresponding Edge file to your card.

The Edge file has a READ ME and an instruction file in Word format that will assist you in getting the Edge data into your GPS unit.

Contact me if you need any additional information.

~ Captain Paul~
March 21 at 7:12pm
Tim KlesaProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Southeast Louisiana
Hey guys, it free. Don't be afraid. Just want some people to use it and let me know what you think.

It's kind of a hobby for me, might work out well for everyone.

Tim
March 16 at 8:17pm
Tim KlesaProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Southeast Louisiana
Let me introduce myself.

My name is Tim Kolesa. I am a resident of Louisiana for 40+ yrs. I'm
originally from Illinois. I moved down here to attend LSUNO. Married,
raised a family and stayed put.

When I first moved down here, being an avid weekend fisherman in
Illinois, I bought a small boat and went fishing. Raising a family,
buying a house, and making a career....  Read More
March 13 at 10:38am
dbarreiroProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Louisiana
I just moved to Texas and I am looking to purchase a BlueChart Data Card (MUS014R) for my Garmin 2006/2010 GPS unit. Any suggestions where this discontinued card may be found? Thank you.
David
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
March 06 at 4:43pm
i found several companies who may have the item.
Try WWW.STUCCU.COM

They may have what you Str looking for. If not, do a google search for the item you need.

http://stuccu.com/s/Bluechart+Data+Card-MbSLsTI-Buy-Exclusive-Deals-70-OFF-Save-Big-Lowest-Price-On-Bluechart-Data-Card-Best-In-Stock-Fast-Free-Shipping?mt=b&keyword=%2Bbluechart%20%2Bdata%20%2Bcard&ap=1o2&cid=60495468778&caid=53506cdeb1b1c62a0c0fcc70&netid=1&network=g&aaid=54595432b1b1c618d4c5eee7&gclid=CjwKEAiAveWnBRCzjqf4zpuUkGYSJABcoZbHYI23dT5i5e4djhrEZRXhzCn-8sImSUq1eXEtzZz-vxoCp0zw_wcB

Captain Paul
March 04 at 12:06pm
Jpoche85Profile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Delacroix Island in Southeast Louisiana
I just bought a Lowrance Elite 5 HDI unit for my boat. I fish the Delacroix area when I do fish. My question is what is the best SD card to give me the best possible map of the Delacroix area?
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
February 25 at 2:27pm
What is the best mapping for the Delacroix area?
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ JPOCHE85 ~

I see that there is a great deal of opinions concerning mapping for your GPS unit. That is very good and you should consider them all. But, I like the Lowrance TOPO INSIGHT. Insight HD & PRO v14. The TOPO INSIGHT is based on USGS topographical maps and not NOAA Charts.

Yes, I know, the NOAA charts are the best in the world for detailing the Aids To Navigation buoys, cans, nuns, lights and day markers that define established marine waterways, but I believe that they do not depict the myriad of small bayous, lagoons, bays, lakes and canals that make up the Louisiana swamps and marshes.

According to Lowrance the Topo Insight HD maps are “Based on satellite imagery from the U.S. Geological Survey with resolution down to 8m. They are compatible with Lowrance HDS Gen2 and Gen2 Touch, Mark HDI and Elite HDI products.

The topo based mapping covers the small land features as well as the water bodies that surround them. The TOPO INSIGHT is sold in regions and they have one for the SE U.S. that covers Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida N. and S. Carolina and Tennessee.

So my suggestion is that you visit a stocking Lowrance dealer and view the available mapping. Check out the TOPO INSIGHT by zooming in to an area that you are familiar with and see if it meets your requirements.

If not, check out the NAUTICAL INSIGHT. Compare them along with the other mapping suggestions some of your readers made.

Captain Paul
February 22 at 10:53pm
wishin-I-was-fishinProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Vermilion Bay in South Central Louisiana
Photo Album
  • Caldwell Reef 3D
  • The Cove, Vermilion  Bay
Hey Capt Paul, I read the articles on GPS and mapping and I have something that may blow you out of the water.

Over the course of a couple of months I debated on whether or not to sign up for Navionics or Lowrances Insight Genesis. The part I could not get over is the $100 yearly fee associated with the programs. Besides the money, I would have to record sonar data and upload to them....  Read More
February 20 at 9:08pm
mike the tigreProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Louisiana
Capt Paul please give detailed instruction to get GPS coordinates off Google earth///I would like to find points in Delocroix and Hopedale areas and put them in my Lowerance HDS7 touchscreen as waypoints Thanks in advance
Captain Paul Profile Photo
Response by Captain Paul
February 13 at 5:03pm
GOOGLE W/Ps TO LOWRANCE
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ Mike the Tiger ~

Ok Mike, there are two ways of completing your mission. I suggest that you try both and see which one works best for your unit and your piece of mind. Both require a two part operation on your part.

Either way, you should do the first part for either of the options.

First, get a SPARE data card that will be used to ONLY make data transfers from your computer to the GPS unit. Place it in the unit and turn the unit on and change any function in the unit. Remove the card and bring it to your computer.

Then make a folder in the Google Earth client window (c: program files/google/googleEarth/client/MY GPS points). Name it something like my GPS points.

This will be the location where you save the Google “Places”. They will go to the general CLIENT file, so you may have to “move” them in to the proper GPS named folder.

Open the Google Earth program and In the VIEW link, select Tool Bar and Sidebar by checking the links. This will allow you to see a bar on the left side of the screen as well as a toolbar at the top of the view.

The waypoints will appear in the PLACES box in that bar. Organize it to your taste.

Google Earth can record and save the places in a variety of position formats. I suggest that you use the Degrees and Decimal minutes (DDD,MM.mmm) as this is usually the default setup for your GPS unit. If it is not, change it to this setting in the Google Earth Options / 3D View in the Show Lat/Long settings. They also use a WGS84 DATUM in plotting and displaying their mapping images. It is a locked in setting that you are not able to change in the Google Earth program. Your GPS system should be set to the same WGS 84 datum setting. Both categories must agree in both the position format and the DATUM settings.

Google Earth saves the positions as an .kml or a .kzm. files. These files will be the ones that you convert and transfer to the computer then to your GPS unit.

Zoom in the Google Earth program and mark your places (waypoints)

Mark and save your positions by using the ADD PLACEMARK icon link or by using the Control + shift + S key strokes.

Save your locations as a Placemark (waypoint) one at a time. You can select color of the map pins by using the right click of the mouse in the Waypoints box and selecting the PROPERTIES button.

After all of the waypoints are saved and moved into the MY GPS file you are ready to make the transfer.

Select the location where you want the data to go (MyDocuments or My Library/GPS WAYPOINTS/HOMEDALE (or DELACROIX) whichever is appropriate for the area you converted. Copy the Google Client file to that location,

Part Two

On the web, go to www.GPSBabel.org and start the download by clicking on the link. It is a FREE data internet download. Install an icon on your desk top for the program.

Open the Babel program and select the INPUT format as Google KML and select the Google place file where you placed it in the Program files/google/googleEarth/client/MYGPS/Delecroix (or Hopedale) folder. All of the Google Earth place locations you marked should be in that one folder.

Indicate that file in the Babel program. Click the WAYPOINTS box in the Babel Program and then select the Lowrance or the Lowrance version 4 for the file type depending on what version of Lowrance software your unit is running. Try the Version 4 first.

Click the OK. The data your place marks should all be converted to Lowrance .usr waypoints and should me in the appropriate folder.

Now copy the converted file to the spare memory card. In doing so, you may want to rename it or use the full name. Place the memory card in your GPS unit and using the MENU features in that unit, transfer the data from the data card into the internal waypoint memory. All of the waypoints should appear as overlays on what ever mapping program you may have.

Another Option.

If the unit does NOT recognize the file, you will have to use the Lowrance data program called INSIGHT PLANNER. It is a “For Sale” item on the Lowrance web site. Check out the Mapping links, or search the site for INSIGHT Planner. You will note that Lowrance offers several type of supplemental mapping that you may be interested in, including Insight Topographical maps. I like this type of mapping, as I believe that it shows the Louisiana coastal marshes with much better detail than some of the other mapping versions.

The INSIGHT PLANNER can read Google KMZ files so it saves you the trouble of having to use the Babel program. However it is a good idea to download and install the Babel program in your computer is it is a great tool for converting waypoints, tracks and routes from one manufacturer’s format to another.

From there, open the Lowrance INSIGHT PLANNER, and click on the TRANSFER button then the IMPORT then the FILE ON DISK then the GOOGLE EARTH option. If the Babel copy you first tried did not work on the memory card, you can select the Lowrance .usr file to import into the Insight Planner. If you by passed the Babel option, simply select the GOOGLE file option and import it into the Insight program.

Once there you can delete and add additional waypoints, combine several locations together and when finished you can EXPORT the USR file by selecting the TRANSFER/ EXPORT/ File on Disk and save it to the spare memory card. This program offers you several of the older versions of the USR format. You may have to experiment which version will work in your newer unit.

Contact me if you need any additional help.

~ Captain Paul ~
February 13 at 11:39am
shuckdooterProfile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Southeast Louisiana
Just got my first boat and looking to see if yall can point me in the right direction for a good chartplotter/fishfinder. Should I be looking for a combo unit or two separate units? Looking to stay around $500 but will spend more if it means I get the right gear. Also, which navionics card is best for southeast Louisiana? Thanks in advance.
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Response by Captain Paul
February 12 at 11:35am
BEST GPS and Mapping
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ Shuckdooter ~

I can help you somewhat, but you are going to have to do a little investigation on your own to get the features and performance you want.

As for my suggestions, I can give you some pointers to consider.

There are several brands that are available for your needs, but you will be hard pressed to find one with the necessary mapping for the dollar price you set. The largest sellers in the consumer market are Lowrance, Garmin and Humminbird units. Certainly there are other companies but start with these to establish a benchmark for your investigations.

At one time I would not have recommended a combo unit as one feature seemed to be always better than the other. But, today’s technology allows combo units to be as good as any stand alone unit. Most units allow the user to split the screen to have both a navigation and sonar image at the same time.

Both types of sonar/GPS configuration would work for you, so your selection will be determined by the foot space of the unit, available space around the helm, and price. Two units will take up twice the space than one combo.

As for the brand of GPS unit you should get, that is entirely up to you. All of the above manufacturers produce top flight units. But you should know that they require DIFFERENT MAPPING programs.

Many GPS users first select the available mapping, then get a compatible GPS unit that will accommodate the mapping they choose.

The next consideration is the size of the viewing screen. You will find that the price increases with the size of the screen, so use that as a guide. Compare units with the same size display for a fair assessment.

I suggest that you investigate all of the brands and their respective models of GPS units, comparing one to another. They all will provide an accuracy with the WAAS feature to within three (3) meters. Then after deciding on the unit, you will have to then determine what type of supplemental mapping you will need with the unit. Or as stated above what unit will accommodate what mapping software.

These mapping programs can run into the hundreds of dollars, so you should consider the total cost of the unit and the necessary maps you will need. Be careful here as some of the less expensive units CANNOT accept any supplemental mapping. What is in the unit is what you have to use.

As for the mapping that is available, you should first know that those that would work in one unit may not work in other units. The Navionics and the Lowrance INSIGHT TOPO are ortho corrected mapping as is the Garmin chart and Topographical based programs. These programs that could set you back another $100- $300 and even higher. So be careful when ordering any of these programs as there is no return on software items.

For instance the Navionics # 907 P+ will cost about $399. These charts are based on NOAA marine Charts. The detail is not going to be as sharp or detailed and the coverage not as broad as the topographical based maps. The Lowrance Topo Insight PRO 2013 East is based on Topographical maps and offers, which I believe, is the best type for details for the Louisiana coastal marshes and inland lakes.

Garman’s TOPO US 24K – Southeast U.S. covers several of the Gulf of Mexico stats and is available for around $100. It offers superb marsh detail.

Most companies also offer an aerial photo based mapping that designed to be used in their unit. Some are purchased outright while some are provided as a yearly purchased download.

If you go with a Lowrance system, be sure to get the Lowrance INSIGHT PLANNER. This program allows you to transfer data such as Routes, tracks and WAYPOINTS between your GPS unit and a PC computer. It is an invaluable tool for archiving your data and in planning a trip.

Humminbird offers their Humminbird PC and Garmin has their BASECAMP programs that allow for computer to GPS unit data transfers. In today’s electronic world, it is the way to go for installing routes, tracks and waypoints in the units.

Again, remember that the maps are not interchangeable between the different units.

Go to a stocking dealer(s) that handles Garmin, Humminbird and Lowrance their mapping and actually view the detail and coverage of the aforementioned mapping programs.

Ask to view the different mapping programs that are available for the unit. Find you fishing area and zoom in on a particular location. Compare one to another. This will give you the necessary knowledge to make an intelligent decision.

Please Get back in touch and let me know what you decided on.

~ Captain Paul ~
February 10 at 4:12pm
MEVProfile Photo
MEV
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Louisiana
Capt Paul

How accurate are GPS coordinates taken from Google Earth? If I use Google Earth on my computer to find a spot in Lake Pont. how close will the GPS coordinates put me to that spot? Someone told me that the government required a deviation that altered the accuracy.
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Response by Captain Paul
February 03 at 5:55pm
Google Accuracy
~ Captain Paul's response ~

Yes, No and Maybe.

I guess that covers it all. But seriously, they all could apply depending how you are using the settings in your GPS unit as compared to the Options in the Google Earth program.

Let me explain. My information is that Google Earth uses a EGM96 Geoid in displaying their Google Earth programs.

EGM96 (Earth Gravitational Model 1996) is a geopotential model of the Earth consists of coefficients complete to degree and order 360. Basically it is a model of the earth as devised in 1996 which allows the user to precisely place positions on the surface of the ellipsoid. This model is the result of a collaboration between the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA), the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), and Ohio State University.

Very accurate positions can be placed on the Geoid with regards to vertical and horizontal locations. Some map makers use an ellipsoid model for their model. The Geoid model is usually more accurate for positions that are in elevations that are above the surface of the Geoid, whereas the Ellipsoid model is usually better used for relative flat areas near to sea level.

Either way, I believe that the Google Earth images are corrected to use WGS 84 datum. So if that is the datum that you use, simply enter the Google coordinates into your unit. Be sure to check the position format to be sure that they also agree. You can either change the Position Format ( Location) in your GPS unit or you can change the Google Earth display by going to the TOOLS/Options link at the top of the program and select what ever position format you normally use. Be sure that they agree.

So, if you are using your GPS unit in a relative flat area, such as Louisiana, or any sea level environment, I would assume that the figures are fairly accurate. However, if you are using the WAAS feature in your GPS unit in order to get the 3 meter accuracy via the differential system, your position via Google may only be to a position accuracy of 20 meters.

I would use the Google info but use it with suspect. When you get to the actual location you should use your WAAS activated GPS unit of “refine” the position.

If you need any additional information, get back with me.

Captain Paul
February 03 at 6:43am
whodat08Profile Photo
Captain Paul - GPS Info in Calcasieu Lake in Southwest Louisiana
Capt Paul,

I just bought your edge file for big lake. I keep my boat an hour away at a marina. I want to come prepared with exactly what I need to install the edge file.

Do you suggest a data card or is it possible to hook my garmin up to my computer?

Thanks for the help!
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Response by Captain Paul
August 03, 2014 at 7:04pm
EDGE for A Garmin GPS unit
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ WhoDat08 ~

Here are some suggestions.

Yes there is a Garmin cable with both power and data link, but the data end of the cable does not have any type of connection. You would have to have a person who is computer savvy to place a connection that is compatible with one of the different ports on your PC.

That unit is meant to communicate with a computer via a SPARE DATA CARD. A spare SD card is the way to go.

First download the FREE Garmin data transfer program they call BASE CAMP from their web site and install it in your computer.

This will allow you to have the ability to transfer data to and from the GPS unit and your computer via the spare data card.

With saying that there is another task you will have to do. You MUST first place the data card in your GPS unit with the unit off, then turn it on and do any function. This writes a code on the spare card that lets Base Camp and later the same GPS unit communicate with the card. Of course you would also need the EDGE File that ends in .gdb and .gpx. This file is the actual data file.

So, you will have to first visit your boat and access the GPS. If you have a lap top PC, you can bring it with you as long as it has a card reader-writer and has the Base camp installed.

If not then you would have to visit your boat, install the SD card then use it in your PC.

Before you go, print out the Acrobat .pdf file and the spreadsheet file. Bring them on board in a plastic zip lock type bag.

Captain Paul
July 31, 2014 at 12:08pm

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