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Old 2 Jun 2007
Chris D (Newcastle NSW)'s Avatar
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Question World Aviation Charts for overland travel???

A friend has just introduced me to World Aviation Charts for Australia, there are about thirty that cover the whole country. The charts are at 1:1,000,000 have good info on roads and tracks as well as land formations.

Are these type of maps also available for other regions of the world?

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Old 2 Jun 2007
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You do get Russian aviation maps of most continents, but they're ancient and so quite a few newer roads are missing. They give you a fairly good overview of the topography. Sometimes I found that a marked road over the Andes was just a mule track and so of no use to me ;-)

I used them for planning purposes for a Patagonia ride, but the local road maps were more detailed and of later publishing date.

Beside a geographical bookshop in Munich I think Touratech sells them as well.

Only when we pause to wonder
do we go beyond the limits of our little lives.
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Old 2 Jun 2007
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Air charts

I have seen quite a few over the years, in the possession of flyers of course. So they are certainly available to aviators for their own RTW activity and I have seen them in various scales, depending on what they are intended for, from large scale plans of airports to world atlases and everything in between - as a thought, those fancy, bulging flight bags that pilots carry around will be packed out with similar ones!

I don't know if it is easy to obtain them - I have never considered it because the scales that I have seen in greatest use are not all that useful IMO. I do have one or two as "souvenirs" of flights I have been on - always liked looking at maps as it happens.
As a minor point, air planning charts are covered in symbols and markings that are of no relevance when on the ground (flight paths etc etc), so I don't rate them for land navigation. You should be able to get 1:1 000 000 land maps (& other scales for that matter) from whoever does the national surveys in Oz and elsewhere (Ordnance Survey here in the UK).


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Old 4 Jun 2007
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I've used US Army topo maps before. It's about 15-20 years old I think, but who cares. You have a scaled reference with contours at least. Topo is never as easy to use as road maps. I use them to judge the contours, see where the passes are, etc.
I've gotten them through Stanfords (Stanfords' Books and Maps Online) in London but also these guys.

Topographic maps from Omni Resources.
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Old 6 Jun 2007
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You could possibly use a WAC chart to supplement a normal road map - the WAC chart has some useful topographic information on it - but I certainly would not use a WAC by itself for overland navigation, simply because the cultural data on the WAC charts is very, very old. Normally, cultural data (roads, towns, and so forth) is only updated perhaps once every 10 years.

If it helps to give you a perspective on things, I am an aircraft pilot by profession, and I work in lesser developed areas such as Africa. I normally buy a Michelin map to supplement the WAC charts that I use for aeronautical navigation.

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