Greg "Doc Lures" Vinall

Greg "Doc Lures" Vinall

Podcast Host, Lure Maker, Scientist, Educator

Greg has hosted the Australian Lure Fishing Podcast since it started in January 2019. When he’s not playing podcast host, he’s a qualified environmental scientist, lure making educator and tragic lure fisher.

Show Notes For Today’s Episode Are On Their Way…. Meanwhile Please Enjoy The Audio!


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1 Comment

  1. Xtreme Armchair Angler

    Thanks Doc,

    A good blend of observations & advice on how best to approach unfamiliar waters in a way which combines exploring the new with drawing on past experience.

    One observation if I may: while a tournament ready mindset and pre-fish sessions are a must for all serious fishos on the competition circuit; for those who fish for fun rather than fame & fortune sometimes it’s good enough to just be out on the water casting a line and going with the flow.

    That said, anticipation & preparation are still very much part of the fun, and in that regard most of the essential bases were well covered.


    Modern Sonar / GPS chart-plotters and modern mapping software have combined to create individual real-time “Live/Social” Maps – or, more accurately, personal bathymetric maps that develop in real time using data captured by the transducer, stored on the MFD (Multi Function Display – aka “sounder”), and displayed as an enhanced map showing local information not otherwise available from commercial map products.

    So, kind of like your own personal bathymetric overlay for Google Maps.

    Sometimes these real-time maps remain private to the sounder which captured the sonar data – and this is typically known as “Live” mapping; whereas other times the mapping data is uploaded and available for anyone else to use – hence the “Social” aspect.

    This concept goes by various names depending on brand of sounder and mapping software.

    For example, on Navico sounders (Lowrance & Simrad) loaded with C-Map charts it’s called Genesis, and for Navico & Raymarine sounders loaded with Navionics charts it’s called SonarChart Live. Humminbird call it AutoChart LiveShare and the equivalent for Garmin is QuickDraw.

    At this point it’s worth noting that while Navionics is a Garmin company, for some crazy reason Navionics charts don’t work on Garmin GPS chart-plotters. Go figure!

    Certainly this capability will continue to evolve and change over time, but it’s also true that what works today may be discontinued tomorrow. So, not dissimilar to the minefield which now exists when trying to connect various sounders and mapping software to various subscription-based mobile phone mapping apps.

    That being so it’s worth noting that the ability to download C-Map Genesis Social Maps direct to the GPS chart-plotter via WiFi (using a mobile phone data hotspot) is no longer supported by Simrad. So, it now all has to be done at home using a PC and SD cards before heading out. IMO this is a right royal PITA and a major retrograde step, but all the more reason to invest time preparing and planning when fishing new water.

    How the C-Map Genesis system works is explained in more detail here:

    And this is the list of current C-Map Genesis maps available for downloading:

    There are similar websites for the other Live/Social Mapping systems.

    Summary: Live/Social maps are yet another resource which could easily rival the usefulness of bathymetric data available via Google Maps (at least in certain situations). And if that’s so, this is another reason why researching & purchasing Sonar / GPS Chart-plotter hardware should be done in conjunction with choosing the most appropriate “value-add” chart software.

    Why? Because to get the best map detail and functionality now requires separate purchase of an “add-on” chart product (aka cards), and these can be very expensive and are also region specific. But worse, many real-time Live/Social mapping systems will not work with the basic maps which come pre-installed on modern sounders. As in, to gain this functionality one has to purchase an extra mapping product and perhaps also an annual subscription, so choose wisely because not all Live/Social mapping systems are created equal.

    Finally, a word of warning: the marriage of Sonar / GPS technology with mapping software is not as simple as it seems since each company has implemented different styles of “Live/Social” mapping protected by patents & copyright which is often then cross licensed between companies, but with no cross-platform compatibility. So, very much like the current spate of Live/Real-time/3D sonar imaging systems (and Side-Imaging before it), all of which derive from a single patented technology but none of which is compatible across platforms.

    PS: If something I’ve said is incorrect or my knowledge is out-of-date then I look forward to the industry experts correcting the record.

    PPS: Feedback from ALF members on their experience with Live/Social mapping would be really good too.


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