Author Topic: Welcome to Geographical Help  (Read 6768 times)


  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1318
    • View Profile
Welcome to Geographical Help
« on: March 13, 2013, 07:39:41 pm »
Do you want to track down every place mentioned in your logbook?
Do you want to look at what other people have found?
Welcome to the world of eXtreme transcribing!

Reading place names mentioned in the logbooks and locating the places can be challenging. So, we have created this board to help. You can use it to search for place names directly or to find maps and sites that will help you in your own search. You can ask for help. And, you can contribute the results of your research!

Reference topics show place names from the logs both in alphabetical lists and displayed on Google Earth maps. They also have links to place name resources specific to that region.

Discussion topics allow you to ask for help with place names and to contribute the results of your own research. You can also contribute links to place name resources specific to that region. Discussion topics may also contain place names that haven't yet been added to the Reference topics.

Links to place name topics

Region                   Reference             Discussion       
East Africanreferencediscussion
US (non-Alaskan)referencediscussion
Latin America and Caribbeanreferencediscussion
China Station, Japan, Pacific and Indian Oceanreferencediscussion
Other*   (none)discussion

* We have specific topics for the most frequently visited regions. However, some ships visit Latin America, Africa, or Asia. The purpose of this topic is to handle place names that do not fit in the currently existing topics. Topics for regions where we have accumulated a significant number of place names (but not yet created Reference/Discussion topics) are listed below.

Links to other place name topics

Region                                          Contributer(s)
Icelandic and Faroese Place NamesThursday Next
Mediterranean and Black Sea Place NamesJanet Jaguar, AvastMH, Randi
West African Place Namesstudentforever, AvastMH, Randi

Philip Brohan's Place Names

Note: Place names include lighthouses.

Links to place name resources

Note: Links given here are for global sources. Region specific links are in the individual regional topics.

Links to useful tools

Note: When providing Latitude and Longitude values, one decimal place is a must, and two decimal places is better if you can manage that.

Following posts

« Last Edit: November 17, 2015, 10:30:24 am by propriome »


  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1318
    • View Profile
Re: Welcome to Geographical Help
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2013, 07:46:21 pm »
Using Google Earth maps

Here is some advice and a few hints about using our maps for Google Earth. If you are already familiar with Google Earth, you could probably skip this post.
Since a complete tour of all Google Earth features would require a vast amount of time and space, we will try to give some general usage directions and hints.
If you are interested in learning more about it, you can find countless resources over the net, and you could start from the Google Earth main page, from where you can download and install the latest version of this software.

Once Google Earth is installed on your machine, you will be able to use our maps. You should have a new "open with.." option in your browser, which immediately starts the Google Earth software after you've downloaded a map. Otherwise you can always download the map (a .kmz file) anywhere you like on your machine, and then open it with Google Earth.
Navigating the globe is quite simple. You can zoom in and out with the mouse wheel and move around the earth by clicking the left mouse button and dragging.
When you download a map, a flying animation will bring you over the area covered. You can always stop the movement by zooming or clicking.

Double clicking on any feature will start a flight towards the point you have selected. Again you can always stop any movement by zooming or clicking.
A single click on any feature will open up a balloon with additional information and urls. We are trying to provide at least one url for each point as a reference. For lighthouses, lightships and other relevant historical places, a little more general information will be available.

On the left of the map area, you will see a Places panel (with two main folders - My Places and Temporary Places), in which our maps will appear after being loaded, a Search Box where you can search amongst the existing places, and a Layers panel.
By default some layers (Borders and Labels, Places, Ocean) will be activated when you first run Google Earth.

The Layers Panel
The Places Panel

  • Default layers and our maps will make the scene very crowded. We suggest that you disable any unwanted layer if you feel confused by the amount of things you see. You can always activate them again when you feel more confident.

  • When our map finishes loading, it will normally comprise a relatively large region, and the scene will therefore appear full of elements and text. Zooming towards the area you're interested in will make things much more clear.
    Full British Columbia Map
    A closer look...

  • You can download and use more than one map at time. If your ship is cruising near the border of a region, it could be a good idea to load both the adjoining area maps.
    For example, if your ship is cruising inside Juan de Fuca Strait (between Washington, US, and British Columbia, Canada), the logkeeper will most probably note down place names from both sides of the strait. Northern ones will be present on the British Columbia map, while southern places will be present on the US map. Therefore it could be useful to get them both.

  • When you download a map, it will appear in the Temporary Places folder. This area will normally be emptied when you exit Google Earth.
    When asked if you want to save items into the My Places folder, we suggest you answer Discard. Every time you download a map it will appear again in temporary places and, since these will be, at least initially, subject to many changes, it's advisable to always get the latest available.

    Moreover, downloading the same map many times will duplicate elements. Note that you can always manually delete a folder or a folder's content from Temporary Places or from My Places, by right-clicking on it and choosing the Delete or Delete Contents option.

  • We will use the following six different icons for different kinds of landmarks:
    • For large islands and greater masses of land, not equatable to a point, but still mentioned on logpages (e.g. Vancouver Island, British Columbia)
    • For anchorages, harbors, bays, coves and mooring places.
    • For channels, straits, sounds, narrows, gulfs and any large water area.
    • For lighthouses. This does not include smaller lights, lighted buoys, lightships and other minor installations.
    • For places in which a lightship was stationed.
    • For capes, points, rocks and any other landmark.

We will update these maps with all our other Geographical Help topics.
These maps are not designed to be GPS-perfect. If you see any errors please do report them in the Discussion topic for the appropriate region. All contributions will be greatly appreciated.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2015, 11:21:00 pm by propriome »


  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1318
    • View Profile
Re: Welcome to Geographical Help
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2013, 07:51:17 pm »
Template for alphabetical lists

If you wish to use this, just replace the descriptions with the data and replace the 'http://' after the 'url=' with the link.

[td]Country/State/Province[/td][td][url=http://][color=#0000cc]Place Name[/color][/url][/td][td]Latitude[/td][td]Longitude[/td][td]Other info[/td]

     For the United States, please enter the state.
     For Canada, please enter the province.
     For other countries, please enter the country.

Latitude and Longitude:
     Preferably in decimal format with a minimum of one decimal place - two decimal places is the preferred format

Using this will make our task easier, but it is strictly optional.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2013, 08:27:41 pm by Randi »


  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1318
    • View Profile
Re: Welcome to Geographical Help
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2013, 07:52:19 pm »
Definitions of some useful geographical terms

From: unless otherwise noted.

Anchorage - an area where vessels may anchor
Atoll(s) - a ring-shaped coral reef which has closely spaced islands on it encircling a lagoon
Bank - an elevation, typically located on a shelf, over which the depth of water is relatively shallow but sufficient for safe surface navigation
Bar - a shallow ridge or mound of coarse unconsolidated material in a stream channel, at the mouth of a stream, estuary, or lagoon and in the wave-break zone along coasts
Bay - a coastal indentation between two capes or headlands, larger than a cove but smaller than a gulf
Bight(s) - an open body of water forming a slight recession in a coastline
Breakwater - a structure erected to break the force of waves at the entrance to a harbor or port
Canal - an artificial watercourse
Cape - a land area, more prominent than a point, projecting into the sea and marking a notable change in coastal direction
Channel - the deepest part of a stream, bay, lagoon, or strait, through which the main current flows (see also Marine Channel and Navigation Channel)
Cove(s) - a small coastal indentation, smaller than a bay
Dock(s) - a waterway between two piers, or cut into the land for the berthing of ships
Docking basin - a part of a harbor where ships dock
Dockyard - a facility for servicing, building, or repairing ships
Dry dock - a dock providing support for a vessel, and means for removing the water so that the bottom of the vessel can be exposed
Estuary - a funnel-shaped stream mouth or embayment where fresh water mixes with sea water under tidal influences
Fairway -
a. A navigable deep-water channel in a river or harbor or along a coastline.
b. The usual course taken by vessels through a harbor or coastal waters.
Fjord - a long, narrow, steep-walled, deep-water arm of the sea at high latitudes, usually along mountainous coasts
Glacier(s) - a mass of ice, usually at high latitudes or high elevations, with sufficient thickness to flow away from the source area in lobes, tongues, or masses    
Gulf - a large recess in the coastline, larger than a bay
Harbor(s) - a haven or space of deep water so sheltered by the adjacent land as to afford a safe anchorage for ships
Headland - a high projection of land extending into a large body of water beyond the line of the coast
Icecap - a dome-shaped mass of glacial ice covering an area of mountain summits or other high lands; smaller than an ice sheet
Icecap depression - a comparatively depressed area on an icecap
Icecap dome - a comparatively elevated area on an icecap
Icecap ridge - a linear elevation on an icecap
Inlet - a narrow waterway extending into the land, or connecting a bay or lagoon with a larger body of water
Island - a tract of land, smaller than a continent, surrounded by water at high water
Isthmus - a narrow strip of land connecting two larger land masses and bordered by water
Jetty    a structure built out into the water at a river mouth or harbor entrance to regulate currents and silting
Lagoon - a shallow coastal waterbody, completely or partly separated from a larger body of water by a barrier island, coral reef or other depositional feature
Lock(s) - a basin in a waterway with gates at each end by means of which vessels are passed from one water level to another
Marine Channel - that part of a body of water deep enough for navigation through an area otherwise not suitable
Mole - a massive structure of masonry or large stones serving as a pier or breakwater
Narrows - a navigable narrow part of a bay, strait, river, etc.
Navigation Channel - a buoyed channel of sufficient depth for the safe navigation of vessels
Nunatak - a rock or mountain peak protruding through glacial ice
Ocean - one of the major divisions of the vast expanse of salt water covering part of the earth
Peninsula - an elongate area of land projecting into a body of water and nearly surrounded by water
Pier - a structure built out into navigable water on piles providing berthing for ships and recreation
Point - a tapering piece of land projecting into a body of water, less prominent than a cape
Pool - a small and comparatively still, deep part of a larger body of water such as a stream or harbor; or a small body of standing water
Port - a place provided with terminal and transfer facilities for loading and discharging waterborne cargo or passengers, usually located in a harbor
Quay - a structure of solid construction along a shore or bank which provides berthing for ships and which generally provides cargo handling facilities
Reach - a straight section of a navigable stream or channel between two bends
Reef(s) - a surface-navigation hazard composed of consolidated material
Roadstead or Roads - an open anchorage affording less protection than a harbor
Sea - a large body of salt water more or less confined by continuous land or chains of islands forming a subdivision of an ocean
Shoal - a surface-navigation hazard composed of unconsolidated material
Snowfield - an area of permanent snow and ice forming the accumulation area of a glacier
Sound - a long arm of the sea forming a channel between the mainland and an island or islands; or connecting two larger bodies of water
Spit - a narrow, straight or curved continuation of a beach into a waterbody
Strait - a relatively narrow waterway, usually narrower and less extensive than a sound, connecting two larger bodies of water
Wharf(-ves) - a structure of open rather than solid construction along a shore or a bank which provides berthing for ships and cargo-handling facilities
« Last Edit: October 18, 2013, 08:27:53 pm by Randi »


  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7074
    • View Profile
Re: Welcome to Geographical Help
« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2013, 02:43:05 pm »
How to sort a place name table.

Copying the table to Microsoft Word:

Find the table you are interested in (you can use the table below). Do NOT open it in quote or modify - simply use the table as you see it.

Place your mouse at the top left hand corner of the table and drag it down to the bottom right hand corner.

Press ctrl+C to copy the data you selected.

Open a Word document and paste in your table by pressing ctrl+V.

You can include the place names tables from multiple posts by simply pasting each succeeding.

Sorting the table in Microsoft Word:

The sample table at the end of this post is used in these instructions. In some regions the data will not be in the same columns.

Make sure that your cursor is in the table.

Open up a 'sort' window by clicking on this icon.

Make sure that 'No header row' is selected.

To sort by latitude and then longitude:
Sort by = Column 3
Type = Number (this may be selected automatically)
Descending (to order the table from north to south)
Then by = Column 4
Type = Number (this may be selected automatically)
Ascending (to order the table from west to east)

Click 'OK'.

To sort by place name:
Sort by = Column 2
Type = Text (this may be selected automatically)
Click 'OK'.

SeychellesAldabra IslandsSee Groupe d' Aldabra

SeychellesGroupe d' Aldabra-9.4246.37
SeychellesMenai Island-9.7047.50
SeychellesPort VictoriaSee Victoria, Victoria Harbour
SeychellesVictoria Harbour-4.6255.48

SomaliaChisimayuSee Kismayo
SomaliaFavatuSee Fafaatu

SomaliaFawatuSee Fafaatu
SomaliaIsola dei PescicaniSee Bishikaani
SomaliaKisimayoSee Kismayo
SomaliaKisimayuSee Kismayo

SomaliaKnott PassProbably Passo Nord, More info here
SomaliaLas GoniSee Laasqoray
SomaliaLas KhonaiSee Laasqoray
SomaliaLas KhorehSee Laasqoray

SomaliaLaskhoraiSee Laasqoray
SomaliaMtanga Ia PapaSee Bishikaani
SomaliaMtanga Io  PapaSee Bishikaani
SomaliaMtanga Ya PapaSee Bishikaani
SomaliaPasso Nord-0.3542.63
« Last Edit: August 04, 2013, 09:00:20 pm by Randi »