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Maps - California

The content of this guide was created by Bob Sathrum, retired 6/2013

CA - Topography - Current

See Topographic Maps-United States--Current for other sites that include current topographic maps of California.

  • USGS Topographic Maps--The HSU Atlas and Map Collection contains the most recent edition of 1:24,000 scale (7 1/2 minute) topographic quadrangles and all older 1:62,500 scale (15 minute) topographic quadrangles for California. Also integrated alphabetically into the collection are 1:50,000 scale maps produced by the National Imagery and Mapping Agency. The California Topographic Map Index is displayed on the Map Display Panel in the Map Collection. For online indexes see the general guide to Topographic Maps.
  • Alexandria Digital Library (University of California, Santa Barbara) Includes a collection of USGS digital raster graphics for California scanned from USGS 1:24,000 topographic quads. Using "More Options" to select "USGS DRG 24k Calif".

  • California Digital Raster Graphics (DRGs) (Cal-Atlas Geospatial Clearinghouse) Includes digital raster graphics in geotiff format of USGS topographic quadranges for the 1x2 degree series (1:250K), the 30x60 minute series (1:100K), and the 7.5 minute series (1:24K). Use Map Surfer to find DRGs using an interactive mapping tool orFree California GeoTIFF Maps to find maps alphabetically by quadrangle name.

  • California Watershed Browser (California Watershed Council) Users can navigate through a map of California's watersheds based on the CalWater geographic dataset. Once an area of interest is identified one can retrieve digital orthophoto quads; USGS digital raster graphics for the area; watershed projects from the Natural Resources Project database; and a list of rare species and natural communities inventoried by Fish and Game’s Natural Diversity Data Base.

  • California Map and GIS Data (Libre Map Project) Download free digital raster graphics (DRGs) of 1:24,000 scale quadrangles in both TIFF and TFW formats. Display each state by quadrangle name or search by placename.

  • Spatial Locator (California Department of Fish and Game) View seamless collection of USGS 7.5' (1:24,000) topographic quadranges for California. Search by placename using the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS); township, range and section; geographic coordinate or UTM coordinates. Pan and zoom, use a measuring tool for distance and area, add labels, and print a custom map.

  • Topo (Grayscale), California (California Department of Fish and Game and ESRI) Seamless display of topographic maps for California including 24K, 100K, and 250K Digital Raster Graphic (DRG) scanned USGS topographic maps using the ArcGIS.com map viewer or ArcGIS Explorer. Topographic maps are displayed in grayscale colors for use as a more subdued background.

  • Topo (Hillshade), California (California Department of Fish and Game and ESRI) Seamless display of topographic maps for California including 24K, 100K, and 250K Digital Raster Graphic (DRG) scanned USGS topographic maps using the ArcGIS.com map viewer or ArcGIS Explorer. Topographic maps are displayed with  hillshade/relief for enhanced topographic display.

  • Topo (Regular), California (California Department of Fish and Game and ESRI) Seamless display of topographic maps for California including 24K, 100K, and 250K Digital Raster Graphic (DRG) scanned USGS topographic maps using the ArcGIS.com map viewer or ArcGIS Explorer.

CA - Topography - Historical

See Topograhic Maps-United States--Historical for other sites that include historical topographic maps of California.

  • California Historic Topographic Map Collection (California State University, Chico) Contain images of over 900 historic US Geological Survey topographic quadrangles at scales ranging from 1:250,000 to 1:31,680 and ranging in date from the late 1800's to the mid-1940's. All placenames on the maps are indexed and searchable. One can also search by lat/long, township/range, county and historical or current quadrangle names. Presently there is no image map to select an area of interest. The Map Index to Topographic Quadrangles of the United States, 1882-1940 (ref GA 405 M64 1985) can be used to identify some of these maps geographically.
  • California 30- & 60-minute Historic USGS Topographic Maps (UC Berkeley, Earth Sciences & Map Library) Contains images of 1:96,000, 1:125,000 and 1:250,000 USGS topographic maps of California published between the 1880's and the 1940's.

  • California Historic Topographic Maps (Google Earth Library) Requires the use of Google Earth. Historic topographic maps are overlaid on top of Google Earth imagery.

  • Coastal Topographic Sheets (T-sheets): Northern California, Southern California (US Coast Survey) Highly detailed topographic maps of the California shoreline that were created by the US Coast Survey. Maps date from 1851 to 1911 for California. The "T-Sheets" contain a lot of historical information such as locations of buildings and detailed descriptions of shorelines.

  • Historic USGS Maps of California (Broer Map Library) Contains a selection of historical topographical maps of California.

  • Historic Topographic Maps of California: San Franciso Bay Area (UC Berkeley, Earth Sciences & Map Library) Contains images of historic 7 1/2' and 15' USGS topographic quadrangles of the San Francisco Bay area.

  • Historic Topographic Maps of Nevada and Its Borders (University of Nevada Mary B. Ansari Map Library) Collection of 60-, 30- and 15 minute historic topographic quads dating from 1863 to 1968. Includes 80 quads of California.

  • Historical Quadrangle of California (University of Alabama) Maps scanned in .sid format.

  • Los Angeles County Historical Topographic Maps (California Geographic Survey) Contains gif images of 39 1:24,000 scale topographic maps produced between 1924 and 1939 which document the cultural landscape of the period.

  • Los Angeles County, 6-Minute Topographic Series (Alexandria Digital Library) Images are in MrSid format.Indexes to the series are available.

  • Monterey Bay Area Historic USGS Topographic Maps (UC Berkeley, Earth Sciences & Map Library) Contains images of historical 7 1/2' and 15' topographic USGS topographic quadrangles of the Monterey Bay area.

  • NavigateLA (City of Los Angeles Department of Public Works, Bureau of Engineering) Web based interactive mapper that provides over 400 layers of geographic information, linked databases, and reports. Includes a layer of topographic maps at a scale of 1:12,000 produced during the 1960's and available as pdf files.

  • SDAG Historical Topographic Maps, San Diego County (San Diego Association of Geologists) Includes 24 historical 7.5 minute, 15 minute and 30 minute topographic maps of San Diego County.

  • San Francisco Bay Area Historical Topographic Maps (US Geological Survey) Includes historical 15 minute, 30 minute and 60 minute series maps starting in the late 1800's.

  • Topographic Quadrangle Maps: California, Oregon, Nevada and Arizona (US Geological Survey) (microfilm MF 2370) Complete historical collection of California, Oregon, Nevada, and Arizona topographic quadrangles dating from 1884 to 1972 compiled by the USGS and other federal agencies. The Map Index to Topographic Quadrangles of the United States, 1882-1940 (ref GA 405 M64 1985) provides indexing for this microfilm set. In addition Obsolete USGS topographical maps of California (Los Angeles Public Library) contains an alphabetical list of historical California topos along with dates of publication.