I’ve previously published snippets of Insight Genesis mapping both on here and Facebook over the past year, however, Insight Genesis has recently seen some major improvements.
For those who don’t know, Insight Genesis gives you control over the waters you travel. It permits the user to create custom maps from their own sonar data. These can then be overlaid on the community-sourced Insight Genesis Social Map, or kept for private use only. Sonar data can be recorded on the majority of the Lowrance units directly onto a memory card. This can be removed after a trip and uploaded to the Insight Genesis website where cloud-based software does all the work, automatically processing the sonar data you upload to create your custom maps.
Importantly for most anglers, you can maintain your privacy. You can choose to keep your sonar data private for your own maps, or improve the Social Map by contributing community data anonymously (your trails, waypoints and other personal data are never shared). This is important, no one likes to give away their hard earned knowledge of fish holding locations!
So what’s it actually look like?, just how effective is it?. Well I generally rely on Navionics Gold for my navigation of the sea and freshwater waterways,.. though the latter is almost none existant!. For example, I’ve fished Llangorse lake in south Wales and Navionics has zero coverage for this venue. A locally produced map is available online, though it’s pretty basic to say the least!
The lake is fairly well covered by shared uploads to the Insight Genesis website and has resulted in the mapping below being available on the Insight Genesis Social Map. Although Llangorse is currently only about 70% mapped, the detail is clearly much improved and this can be improved yet further, dependent on the viewing settings dictated by the user.
Social mapping is NOW OPEN TO ALL USERS & can be downloaded for personal use on the water!. Just download the file, load it up onto the appropriate memory card and fit it to your Lowrance unit (where compatible). If you are fishing an area regularly this software really comes into its own. You can continue to upload data and your available map will grow in size as a result, with detail also improving as a result. You can even upload data when your afloat via a smart phone and download the mapping for immediate use!
Data can be displayed in both metric and imperial formats, with contour definition as high as 1 foot.
So how does it compare to say the Navionics mapping that I use?. Well I’ve looked online at the Navionics webapp and pulled off some mapping to compare to the equivalent Insight Genesis mapping of the same location. Below is a section of mapping taken from the Solent between Hurst Point and Round Tower Point.
Below is the same mapping (not fully covered yet) as a result of uploading and processing sonar data through the Insight Genesis software. This data was gathered off a single trip and it can be clearly seen that the data is far more detailed than the equivalent Navionics mapping. Imagine making a few trips in the same vicinity and putting together the collated data?, the result would be a set of very useable and highly detailed charts that can be viewed via your chart plotter/combination unit or smartphone.
Though it doesn’t finish there. Each sonar log you upload will be automatically tagged with weather, temperature and barometric-pressure readings taken while you were on the water. This data can help you chart and analyse trends that contribute to successful excursions.
Don't be worried about losing your custom mapping that you’ve gathered as a result of many hours of logging data. The Insight Genesis cloud uses several remote servers to warehouse and protect your custom Insight Genesis maps, which can be downloaded at any time, from anywhere you have an Internet connection. The cloud automatically backs up all your data, protecting against lost or damaged SD cards.. it happens!
Contour data can be customised to suit the user and they can be overlaid on bottom-hardness and vegetation-location maps created with sonar signals. It’s simple to use, record, upload and use!.
Insight Genesis mapping was used by all the competitors at the2014 Hobie World Fishing Championships that took place in the Netherland last year. The detail was astounding and enabled all competitors not only to compete on equal terms, but to have a fantastic overview of what features were beneath them.
The chart below shows the area highlighted above by the red circle, though zoomed in to show the actual detail produced.
If the areas you tend to fish have little or no mapping available, or perhaps you just wish to improve what’s commercially already out there, take a look at Insight Genesis, it might be just what you’re after.
I’m hoping to log sonar data on my Lowrance combo unit most trips this year, not only to add to the Social Maps, but to demonstrate the detailed mapping that can easily be produced by any kayak angler (or any waterborne angler for that matter!) with a suitable Lowrance unit. Watch this space!