With the current advances in fish finder and GPS technology it can be hard to keep up with it all. New products and new updates are constantly being released and unless you are paying close attention it can be easy to miss these changes.
One new feature that has recently been made available is Insight Genesis, a new mapping tool that works for Lowrance and Simrad sounders. To put it short, Insight Genesis allows you to create topographical maps of any water system you fish. On initial thoughts it seemed like something you would use if the area you fish isn’t well mapped, more suited to the anglers that fish the dams and impoundments as these are generally not covered in the available mapping cards. I decided to give it a crack anyway and tried creating my own maps in areas that were already well covered by my Navionics Gold Card.
In order to make the maps all you need to do is set your sounder to “record” and make sure your sonar frequency is set to 200khz. As you cover ground, all the sonar data is recorded and saved. Its best to use a blank SD card for this as the file sizes can be quite large. Once saved to the card they need to be uploaded to the Insight Genesis website and the maps are then created. Depending on your internet speed, the uploads can take a while so it’s best to give it a few hours to do its thing. Once uploaded you can view the maps and keep adding more to build up your map and make it larger, then you can chose to download it, by paying $99 for a yearly subscription. It may seem a little steep at first, but you only need to pay this when you are ready to download the map so you can keep accumulating your data until you are happy with it.
So back to the maps I made, it took me a few trips to build up the data, mainly because I just recorded as I was fishing (drifting around mainly). The image on the left shows the contours (1 foot intervals, but can be changed to 3,5 or 10) as they appear on Insight Genesis and the image on the right is how my standard Navionics card shows the same area (sounder screen shot)
The next image shows bottom composition, which is a pretty cool feature. This tells me the hardness of the bottom which is particularly handy for me with my snapper fishing in Moreton Bay. The red shows harder bottom (rock, reef, gravel) and the yellow is softer (sand, mud, etc.)
This last image shows the ability to view your sonar recordings. So you can view on your computer where the fish were. In this instance they were all over the same depth line. Click on any point of the track (red line) and it will show you what your sounder was reading at the time.
Overall I think it’s a handy tool to use. If you have areas that you enjoy fishing and would like to get the most out of them, it can help you really get a better understanding of the bottom. Even areas I thought I used to know, look far different once I mapped them with Insight Genesis. So if you have a compatible sounder, give it a crack. Get on the Insight Genesis website and create an account and start mapping! You will be surprised with what you can find!