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Course Vs. Bearing ; Turn Vs. To Course


GeoPup&ShelpieGirl
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Im still getting ready for navigating a precise route while trying to learn the Garmin 60 C that Im using while waiting for my 76 CS from Alpha6. I like to use my GPS when Im on a helicopter charter as a passenger to practice my layman's navigation. We are flying a route around a major city and yes, we are the good guys. Im a USAF brat.

 

I have created my ROUTES and saved them to Mapsource, then loaded them into my 60 C -- that went smoothly! Now I need to learn to navigate a course, and make adjustments to stay on course, but the terminology and field names and their definitions and differences are not clear to me.

 

Again, traveling routes is my goal, so I may be on the wrong track from the get-go. Suggestions and links to tutorials welcome!

 

It seems to me that I want to know when we have strayed off the ideal route, and how to get back to the route. It seems that TURN gives the adjustment to get back on the route, but Im still learning the terminology and yes, I am studying the whole manual. I have made TURN one my FIELDS.

 

BEARING seems good to give the direction to the next waypoint from where I am at any moment. That seems workable. Just walking around my property, it seems to be a helpful field, but there are other options that I dont understand:

 

There are COURSE and TO COURSE, of course :huh: What is the difference between BEARING and COURSE; between TURN and TO COURSE ??? Im off to Google all this. I bet there are some tutorials, but simpified layman's analogies are my speed for this farm boy ;-) Also, in the ROUTE > MAP page there are fields for time to next leg and distance of next leg. Whew. Are they pulling my leg with all these terms? I need help.

 

We are more like geocachers from the air <_< can anyone give me a hand with choosing best fields to display. Im trying to learn to plan to fly precision routes fast. I work with professional pilots across the country who do what I tell them to do.

 

Im trying to get a little better with my directions!!! Like "turn left 17º" Fly course 237º I would like to be able to direct a pilot through a slalom course. How do I learn that?

 

If you are wondering, I am an aerial photographer and have worked in disaster areas. But Im not a pilot - I just take the darn photos. But Im required to plan assignments and communicate with pilots. Whew! Im trying to use GeoCaching to improve my navigation skills.

 

Thanks,

daPup in Texas

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I'm not a pilot but it seems to me that the best thing to do is to leave it on bearing. Since you've laid out a course that will take you from waypoint to waypoint, the bearing arrow always points to the next waypoint destination. So as you're flying around, you can always see the direct route to the next waypoint.

 

Course and all that stuff is OK for sailing where you have to tack due to wind, something you're not worried about in a helio.

 

PS: Show the bearing square so the actual degrees to the waypoint is displayed so you can tell it to the pilot.

Edited by Alan2
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Course is important when flying or boating when you are trying to avoid areas/obsticals. The course line is what you intended to follow from the last waypoint..if you get off then the bearing is the most direct direction to get to the next waypoint but you will be off course and if that course was important for some reason then you may run aground or pass through restricted airspace.

 

 

I'm not a pilot but it seems to me that the best thing to do is to leave it on bearing. Since you've laid out a course that will take you from waypoint to waypoint, the bearing arrow always points to the next waypoint destination. So as you're flying around, you can always see the direct route to the next waypoint.

 

Course and all that stuff is OK for sailing where you have to tack due to wind, something you're not worried about in a helio.

 

PS: Show the bearing square so the actual degrees to the waypoint is displayed so you can tell it to the pilot.

Edited by kb9nvh
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Good point. If the course you plotted to fly through between two mountains, you would not want to follow bearing if you got off your course - you might hit the mountain following the direct bearing to the waypouint. With that being said, then knowing the difference between course and bearing becomes important. Bearing is the current direcction to the waypoint. It is always changing as your current position changes uinless you are flying the bearing.

 

Course was the direction you original plotted (for example 154 degrees to go from waypoint 1 to waypoint 2. It never changes so those other displays, turn to etc tells you how to get back to your original course becomes important.

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"A course, in navigation, is the direction of travel.

 

The term, even in navigation, can be ambiguous because there are several types of course:

 

course is the general term describing the bearing to be followed to move from the destination to a particular target

heading is the direction the vessel or vehicle is pointing toward - it may be necessary to point away from the intended course to counteract the effects of a cross wind or tidal current or some other force

track is the actual direction of travel irrespective of the heading."

 

"In navigation, a bearing is the angle between the direction to an object and a reference direction. Unless otherwise specified, the reference direction is generally understood to be magnetic North, in which case the term compass bearing is also used. If navigating by gyrocompass, the reference direction is true north. In stellar navigation, the reference direction is that of the North Star, Polaris." :ph34r::laughing::D

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