Tuesday, August 14, 2012

U.S. Forest Service's Interactive Travel Map

The United States Forest Service has finally entered the 21st Century with a new feature on their web site: a new interactive travel map developed by the U.S. Forest Service for the National Forests.

Some, but not yet all National Forests have provided their GIS data: the dark green areas of the map have data.  The map data should continue to improve over time.  It operates similarly to Google topo maps, but with a much clunkier interface.  I'm hoping the map's interface will also improve with time.

You can filter on the type of road or trail you are interested in by selecting buttons in the “Route Designations” menu on the left.  This map includes each Forest’s Motor Vehicle Use Map (MVUM), so you can see what public Forest Service roads haven't yet been closed to the public.

You can also search by Forest Service Route Numbers or by trail names, with a legend that explains what each symbol means.

It’s worth a bit of your time to become familiar with this map and learn how to use it because this is likely to be the future of how the U.S.F.S. will communicate to the public what roads & trails are open or closed.

Click here to view the new map.

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