How to Read Topo Maps
Why Are Topo Maps Valuable?
Keys to Reading Topo Maps
Intro to Contour Lines
The squiggly contour lines you see on the topo map represent changes in elevation across distance. Lines close together represent a steep inclination over a small distance, while lines further apart mean the elevation change is spread out gradually, making a slope less steep. More space between the lines, for example, indicates flat ground.
When judging elevation gains, always look for an index line which will appear darker than the other lines. The index line will also have an elevation associated with it on the map. You can easily figure out elevation changes by comparing two index lines and determine the elevation change by how close the subsequent lines are in between.
Some of the best hunting features like glassing points and knobs can be found by recognizing them on a topographic map. Below we will highlight some important hunting features and how to identify them by their topographic contour lines on your BaseMap Pro App.
Hybrid Topo: High-Res Satellite Imagery + Topo
Not a secret, but still a weapon
We’re not here to say reading a topo map is the secret weapon to a successful hunt. We are here to say it is a very useful, often under used, weapon to a successful hunt. It’s a tool in the hunters toolbox. It’s a tool, once mastered, that will give you confidence reading landscapes and going into areas you are unfamiliar with. After studying your hunt with topo maps, don’t forget to turn on BaseMap’s 3D Maps for a next level detailed view of the landscape, giving you an even greater understanding of the land you are about to travel.