CCM Stick Chart

CCM Stick Chart: A stick chart is a type of navigational tool used by the inhabitants of the Marshall Islands in the Pacific Ocean. CCM (Central Carolinian Micronesian) stick charts are specifically used by Islanders from the central region of Micronesia, known as the Central Carolinian group. These charts were traditionally made from sticks and shells, and were used to navigate the vast ocean by observing the wave patterns, swells, and islands.


1. How do CCM stick charts work?
CCM stick charts work by representing the ocean swells and wave patterns using sticks and shells. Islanders could interpret these patterns to determine the presence of nearby islands and navigate their way through the ocean.

2. What materials are used to make CCM stick charts?
Traditional CCM stick charts are made using sticks, typically coconut fronds or midribs, and small shells. These materials are carefully arranged and tied together to create a visually representative chart.

3. What information can be obtained from a CCM stick chart?
A CCM stick chart provides information about the direction and strength of ocean swells and wave patterns, which allows navigators to identify the presence of nearby islands, reefs, and other navigational landmarks.

4. Are CCM stick charts still used today?
While modern navigation technology has largely replaced traditional stick charts, there are still some Islanders who preserve the knowledge and skill of using CCM stick charts. They are primarily used for cultural and educational purposes rather than actual navigation.

5. How accurate are CCM stick charts in navigating the ocean?
CCM stick charts rely on the ability of navigators to interpret wave patterns and swells accurately. Skilled navigators who have grown up using stick charts can often achieve impressive accuracy in navigating the ocean, but it is not as precise as modern navigation tools.

6. How were CCM stick charts passed down through generations?
CCM stick charts were primarily passed down through oral tradition. Elders and experienced navigators would teach younger generations about the art of stick chart making and navigation using these charts, ensuring the preservation of this cultural practice.

7. Can anyone learn to use CCM stick charts?
While CCM stick chart navigation requires practice and experience, anyone with an interest and willingness to learn can attempt to understand their usage. It is important to note that the traditional knowledge behind stick chart navigation is valuable and should be approached with respect and cultural understanding.