Navigating on Lake Ontario, especially out of Oswego,NY can be quite challenging to down right dangerous at times. In this post, we will discuss some of the must haves to effectively navigate the smallest of the Great Lakes on a day to day basis.
When It’s Too Dangerous
Perhaps talking about when one should just not go out on the Lake at all, should come first! It’s our policy at Ace Charters to refrain from fishing on Lake Ontario during a “Small Craft Advisory Issuance“. There are also times when the wave heights are just too high and tightly packed together that prohibits navigation and fishing all together. This can occur even in the absence of a Small Craft Advisory being issued!
Beware The Fog
One of the obvious challenges to navigating on Lake Ontario is the presence of fog. The scary part is that there might not be any fog present at the onset of your voyage, but then the fog rolls in out of nowhere! We have seen this occur with and without rain storms. So how do you deal with being caught in the fog?
Radar And Chartplotter
On our charter boat the “Ace Charters II”, we have 3G radar overlay on our Lowrance Gen III chartplotter. It’s invaluable navigating during foggy conditions. Radar, especially good radar is a must have on a Great Lakes charter boat. Knowing where other vessels are located during low visibility is imperative to avoid collisions. Radar also shows other vessels’ direction of travel. It also comes in handy to identify where the shoreline and harbor entrances are to get back to the dock safely.
Good Electronics A Must For Navigation
A good chartplotter and fishfinder are must haves as well for navigating on Lake Ontario. Having the way points to the harbor entrance along with a good chart display goes a long way to insuring safe navigation on Lake Ontario. A compass is also a neccesity should your electronics go out. If you’re wondering why I mentioned a fishfinder previously, here’s the answer. Lake Ontario water depth gets shallower as you head towards shore in a southerly direction out of our port of Oswego. If for some reason you were to lose your chartplotter under low visibilty conditions, watching the water depth gives you clues when you are getting close to the shoreline!
If you have any questions , feel free to contact us at 413-346-7675 or via our contact form with any of the questions you may have . We will be happy to answer them. If you would like to book a trip please call 413-346-7675 or feel free to use our contact form as well!