Getting updates from your weather routing service can be helpful but many mariners prefer to do their own forecasting at sea. The problem is the maps provided by NOAA are black and white and, well, rather difficult to interpret sometimes. If you are looking to up your game with interactive maps updated in real time then check out Lifehackers review of the 5 best weather websites.
At the top of Lifehackers’ list (and ours too) is Weather Underground…
Founded in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1995 it’s perhaps the web’s oldest weather site , yet hasn’t rested on it’s past performance in providing the most up-to-date and accurate weather information. For this reason, it took the top spot on Lifehacker’s survey with close to 41% of the votes cast. The site is also well known in the technology community for being Google’s earliest and best friend, mentoring the young website through periods of rapid growth. It continues to lead innovation with new features like FullScreenWeather.com, a web tool launched to integrated mapping and mobile devices. Combining official weather information (including live NOAA feeds) with personal and corporate weather station data, the site is virtual treasure trove of weather information.
Behind it with 20% of the vote was Weather.gov, the weather site from NOAA and the National Weather Service, and the source for many of the other contestant’s weather information and forecast data—clearly many of you prefer to go right to the source!
What we like most about Weather Underground is that, unlike so many new weather sites, they haven’t ignored the mariner. The site’s marine maps section contains vital information for routing your ship around storms and is used by mariners worldwide, including the gCaptain editors, for this very purpose.