So how, what and why? How - We used our electronics to first find the key areas. I'm not talking about scanning for an hour and calling it good. I'm talking many many hours. I have records of scans from 8 years ago and every year since. Plus I put in over 6 hours on the main motor in one day just rechecking and looking for new stuff. This wasn't a 30,000 acre reservoir but a small 1,000 acre lake. The key areas of lake were scanned on 200' passes, 100' on each side of the boat, over the entire lake. Not missing an inch of bottom on our scans. After that was done we uploaded that data to our Reefmaster program on the computer. Now is where the fun begins. You can zoom way in on the scans and make a mosaic where you can see the WHOLE bottom of the lake at once. I can follow the weedlines, the sand spots, the gravel, the rocks and put paths and waypoints on every spot. Once this is done we put the waypoints and paths back in our Humminbird units and we are ready for the attack. Why - this saves a TON of time. With the 360, we pull up to the waypoint on the "spot on the spot" and know we are in position to see it on our screen and make pinpoint casts to the area. No wasted casts - NONE. No casts at just a waypoint with no 360 wondering if the fish are there, wondering if the cast is in the right area, wondering why you're not feeling rocks. Another key which is critical is it allows you to fish in front of the boat, keeping the boat off the sweet spot and not scaring the fish away. We see the structure on our screens, which could be sand, rocks, gravel, etc and make every cast count. Efficiency is unbelievable, every cast you know where you lure is. If the fish are all showing up on the left side of the spot and you don't have a 360, you could be wasting many casts trying to fan cast your waypoint and by the time you get to the "right" side it's the "wrong side" cause the fish moved and you had no idea. When we found the magic spot this day, it was a small 30' by 30' gravel patch with a few big rocks on the side. EVERY SINGLE fish came from that 30' by 30' area. Every time we pitched our drop shots in front of the boat they were on the right spot, and were rewarded with a big fish.
If you have good electronics, put in the time to really learn them and use them. If you are on the fence and not sure they worth it, believe me when I say if you are willing to learn them and use them, they are worth their weight in gold.