A Unique Modern Record of the Oldest Way to Navigate
In the spirit of early Bowditch editions, we offer navigation details of a full ocean passage as an excellent way to learn the ropes of practical celestial navigation. With your own tables and plotting sheets, you can analyze 224 timed sextant sights to obtain 26 position fixes to find your way along a 2,800-nmi voyage lasting 17 days. We use sun, moon, stars, and planets.
After completing this passage you will be prepared to navigate by celestial navigation on your own – if you choose to, or need to.
The book includes an in-depth discussion with examples of the Fit-Slope Method, along with the formulation and examples of numerical LOP advancement for small DR corrections during a sight session and other suggestions for optimizing cel nav when combining traditional and modern solutions to position fixing.
Also included is a record of our rendezvous with the remnants of Hurricane Daniel, and other nuances, such as evidence of loose-cannon mesoscale current eddies–something that we (and most other navigators at the time) did not even know existed in these waters.
Solutions are provided by computation, filled-out workforms, and detailed plots using universal plotting sheets. After each fix, the range and bearing DR to Fix is recorded and discussed in light of proposed guidelines for ocean DR uncertainty.
Landfall at night using computed navigation light ranges is also discussed and illustrated.
* * * Note that this is not a book on how to learn basic celestial navigation. This is an extended realistic exercise in using the cel nav you already know to enhance your knowledge and expand it with advanced methods that could be needed in special circumstances.