Boating Center

Channel Islands Harbor

The Boating Center Channel Islands Harbor
3880 Bluefin Cir
Oxnard, CA 93035

Monday-Thursday: 10:00 am-4:00 pm
Friday: 10:00 am-3:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am-3:00 pm


The Channel Islands Boating Center was constructed by the County of Ventura to expand Boating and Marine Education for its citizens. It is a project to improve California Boating Instruction and Safety funded by Boater Fuel Taxes. It is also another project to improve California Marine Education funded by the 2006 Clean Water Bond Act.

Boating Instruction and Safety

Navigating The Channel Islands

A nautical chart is a map by mariners to navagate over the water. Just as you might use a road map when planning a trip over land in a car, mariners use a nautical chart when planning a trip by boat.

Nautical charts describe geological features that are, for the most part, underwater. Information on points of inrerest that can be found on a nautical chart include:

  • Points of land, coves, and kelp beds
  • Depth and nature of seabeds
  • Rocks,wrecks,and obstructions that could potentually pose a danger
  • Ports
  • Oil platforms and lighthouses

Components of a Nautical Chart

Lines of Longitude and Latitude

Sets of lines that create an imaginary grid used to locate any point on Earth. Lines of longitude run north to south and lines of latitude run east to west. The lines are referenced in degrees(°), minutes ('), and seconds (').

Compass Rose

The compass rose shows direction (North, South, East , West, etc.) when looking at an area on a map.

It is a symbol on nautical charts that consists of two or three concentric circles marked in degrees.

Water Depth in Fathoms (6 Feet Equals 1 Fathom)

Depth information is extremely important to keep ships from running aground on shallow rocks and reefs, or hitting other submerged obstructions.

-represents kelp bed locations in nearshore locatins.

-represents underwater mountain peaks with corresponding elevations (in feet).

-represents locations of different offshore oil platforms in the Santa Barbara Channel.