Below The Boat – Chart Your Course In Wood

Lake Huron Chart

And now for something completely different… Fellow Woody Boater CASUDI (of “Perlita Too” fame) recently brought this cool website to our attention – It has a bit of everything we enjoy here at Woody Boater… A variety of wood, popular lakes and waterways from around the country, great artistic flare, and a classic look that will blend it perfectly at the summer cabin or lake house… or in the office above your computer.

The Below The Boat website was recently created in December by Robbie and Kara Johnson, a husband and wife duo from Bellingham, Washington. Here’s an excerpt from their website which describes their unique 3D wood charts.

Below The Boat
Laser Cut, Hand Crafted, Heirloom Quality Masterpieces

What’s a wood chart?

It’s a door into another world (one which, quite literally, lies below the boat).

Starting with a bathymetric chart (the underwater equivalent of a topographic map), the contours are laser-cut into sheets of Baltic birch and glued together to create a powerful visual depth. Select layers are hand-colored blue so it’s easy to discern land from water, major byways are etched into the land, the whole thing’s framed in a custom, solid-wood frame and protected seamlessly with a sheet of durable, ultra-transparent Plexiglas. (You can click on the image below to enlarge it)

The result is stunning. It lifts the surface of the water back like a veil, exposing the often-overlooked, under-explored, awe-inspiring world that lies below. To those familiar with the floor of the ocean or the bed of a lake, it’s a beautiful reminder of the deep channels, sharp drop-offs, and mountainous landscapes that are hidden from normal view. To the uninitiated, it’s wonderfully eye-opening; as though the world suddenly has taken on a fourth dimension.

Straights of Mackinac

With pieces based on the scenic Pacific Northwest’s volcanic coastline, the warm sandy shores of the Southwest and Southeast, the history-rich coastline of the Atlantic, and lakes from all around the continent, we’re betting that you’ll find one that hits home with you. If you don’t, please let us know. We’re working diligently to add more charts and we’d love to know what else you’d like to see.

Map of the Great Lakes

San Juan Island Chart

Long Island Sound Chart

For more information on these beautiful wood charts from Below The Boat and to view the large selection of charts from around the country, you can Click Here to go directly to their website. Each specific 3D chart can be viewed in detail and has a description of the charts area and points of interest. Below The Boat also has a Facebook page – here’s the link.!/BelowTheBoat?fref=ts

Thanks to CASUDI for sharing this with us… You can go the the great Perlita Too – Riva Tritone blog site which is located on the right side of the Woody Boater home page or by Clicking Here.


10 replies
  1. Bryan
    Bryan says:

    Good looking artwork there. Readers might also look up Lake Art at this web address: They have hundreds of different lakes plotted in a similar manner, and many of them can be in wall art, clock, or even game formats. Not a paid advertisement here; just letting people know their options.

  2. Rick
    Rick says:

    Beautiful work and a really neat birthday present (Kathy-hint hint). Now I have another medium to help me run aground. These are accurate enough to navigate inlets with right? I assume there little magnetic pieces that can be moved around with the sandbars?

  3. Matt B
    Matt B says:

    My wife gave me a similar Christmas present of a “marquetry picture” of our boat. The guy doing it has been sending me updates, here is a sample. It’s amazing what they can do with different wood veneers. Maybe when it’s done I’ll send Matt the complete story.

  4. RiverRat
    RiverRat says:

    Can I get a very tiny Lyman to go with it, to personalize the chart, or have the boat house location added to the map? Your Boat Is Here designation?

  5. Carl Garmhaus
    Carl Garmhaus says:

    I’ve seen the work of both artists “up close and personal”. They were guest vendors at our Algonac Show a few years ago. Very stunning, quality work. Would highly recommend either.

  6. Alex
    Alex says:

    Ironically, those lake bed laser cuts are a chilling reminder that the Great Lakes will soon like just like, them unless we get some serious precipitation.

    Anyone know a foolproof mid-winter rain dance? That would make it a snow-dance, but we’ll take rain, sleet, hail, or 12″ of dew.

  7. Jes
    Jes says:

    We sell them here at the Tahoe Maritime Museum too! Next time you are here (yes, we know it will not be until summer), pick one up…that way it helps the museum too 🙂

  8. Jimmuh
    Jimmuh says:

    If you put one of those pics in photoshop and blow it up REALLY big, you can just see our place; just south of the airport, near the knot hole….

  9. Gerard
    Gerard says:

    If some one desires to be updated with hottest technologies
    after that he must be visit this web page and be up to date everyday.

  10. Shanna
    Shanna says:

    Another option for readers would be Nautical North makes similar wooden charts. They make them fully customizable and will do any body of water. They are 100% made in the USA. They do an awesome job.

Comments are closed.