Pilotage is the art of finding your way around within sight of land, using visual references. It is considered distinct from ‘Navigation’ (with a capital N!), which often refers to finding ones way away from land, or without good visual references. The ‘formal navigation for short crossings’ section discussed a simple example – the bearing that we calculated could, in theory, be followed even in thick fog with no visual references.
Most sea kayak navigation is really pilotage – making the most of the things that we can see.