Rockhounding

Finding Rock Hunting Maps on the Internet

Here are some tips for locating free online maps (primarily USA). The good news is that there is a federal program that publishes digital products online that will provide complete national coverage. The bad news is that it is a federal program, subject to manpower and funding constraints, but it is a very good start. The Internet is a source for many maps of other countries. I have viewed geological maps of Oman and even the Moon and Mars online.

  • Geological and Geophysical Maps – Finding The Map you need: Traditionally, one went to a state bookstore to purchase a paper map hoping it was still in print. The trend today is to publish them online with free access! Tennessee will no longer be printing maps in advance. Maps that aren’t online can be purchased for $20 a map, printed straight from a digital file.
  • If you go to their Geology or Maps sections and poke around, there are pages for state geological maps and state geological organizations. There is also with similar sources. They also list state authorities and links to their websites. Once in those websites, you may frequently find a free downloadable map for the local area you are looking for. The USGS has taken great steps to centralize the search for geological maps.