Washington interactive geology map

I get a lot of emails asking about on-line geologic maps. The Washington State Department of Natural Resources has a great resource. It is the Washington Interactive Geology Map. It allows you to select map scales, map background (topographic? street map? terrain?) and the type of geology you are interested in (faults? surface geology? tsunami inundation zones? landslide? volcanic vents?). You can play with scales and move around on a map of the entire state. The portal is here, which connects you to several interactive maps: http://www.dnr.wa.gov/ResearchScience/Topics/GeosciencesData/Pages/geology_portal.aspx

If you choose the Interactive geology map, you end up here: https://fortress.wa.gov/dnr/geology/?Theme=wigm

The menu lets you select lots of features to turn on or off. You have to play with it a bit to get it really

screen capture of a portion of the interactive geology map.

screen capture of a portion of the interactive geology map. Click to enlarge.

figured out, but it isn’t difficult. The figure above shows the screen set for western Whatcom County. In this menu I selected ‘surface geology’, 1:24,000 and 1:100,000 scale geologic map overlays. 1:24,000 scale maps are only available for some areas, and show up in the image as an area with denser information; an example is in the center, and lower left. You can zoom in on those for more detailed geology. You can turn text labels for geologic units on or off to reduce clutter. The more data you request, the slower the system is to load. I also clicked the box for ‘seismogenic features’, which turned on the blue dashed diagonal faults on the left edge of the screen.

Interactive map showing mapped faults in wesern Whatcom County.

Interactive map showing mapped faults in wesern Whatcom County. Click to enlarge.

This figure shows a much simplified view of seismogenic features only, in the same area. There are several fault strands in the Kendall area at center, as well as the same three faults between Gooseberry Point and Blaine. All the other information is turned off for clarity.

REQUEST TO READERS. If you experiment with any of the other interactive maps on the portal page (tsunami inundation zones, coal mine inventory map, natural hazards, seismic scenarios, etc. please consider writing a comment below about how useful you found it.

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5 Responses

  1. Do you have any better pictures of the jackass conglomerate you found on the beach at Straight of Juan de Fuca? You mentioned the distinctive metamorphosed nature of the aggregate.

    Thanks,

    William in Edmonton

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  2. Thanks for the links. It seems the ‘Interactive Geology Map’ requires Flash, and I want to take these on my iPad into the field. Any options?

  3. Reblogged this on UoD Pacific NW and commented:
    A useful resource for WA geology

  4. THANKS SO MUCH! This will really help me teach!

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