Finding elevation and other map and geographical information, primarily in Melbourne / Victoria Australia

An older and now-outdated version of this page can be found at:*/

Robin Whittle     21 August 2006   

Back to the First Principles site for all sorts of things!

This page is based on something I wrote to the Link Mailing List in August 2006 regarding online maps of Victoria.  The thread can be found at: "Fab Online Maps of Victoria".  Please check these archives for discussion.

Here is an example of a website which I think is really well done - 
except some of the URLs, which are too long to reproduce here . . .
DSE Home > Forests > Information & Research > Maps & Facts

The right link for "Forest Explorer Online - Interactive Maps" leads to:

This software was developed by Spatial Vision in Melbourne:

based on:

Its web interface seems to be simply HTML and Javascript. It works fine
on Mozilla.

By clicking on part of the map, a new map will be generated centred on
that point, in greater detail over a smaller area. (This depends on the
current state of Zoom In/Out.) There is an option for contours under the
"Base Layers" thingo on the right. Click "Layers" in the toolbar to
restore this if it disappears due to some other function makes it go
away. The size of this area can be diminished by dragging the border,
which enables the map to be larger.

There is a hand tool for dragging the map around to create a new centre
for the next map. Some areas have satellite images, under the "Land
Information" options.

The tool with the 'i' in a black circle with three coloured horizontal
bars can be used to give the latitude, longitude and grid references
for a location, by clicking the cursor after selecting that tool.

The Toolbox enables drawing on the map. Distances can be measured.
Areas of arbitrary polygons can be measured. The current state of the
map can be saved as a file to the user's computer, and uploaded to the
server at a later date to restore everything. There is also a way of
saving the current session to the server, which produces a unique URL
with a session number, which can be saved or emailed. This may not be
private, since perhaps someone else could use the same session number.

Saved "shapefiles" can be uploaded to the server and integrated with
the current map.

Best of all, the system can generate A4 and A3 colour PDFs to 216DPI!

While the map database doesn't contain every single track, the ability
to generate customised contour maps on a Sunday morning before going
walking on a Sunday afternoon is really great!

I just discovered that this map system works fine for Melbourne suburbs
- and includes contours! I can't figure out how to find the elevation
of each contour. However, there are other ways of estimating elevation.

This site creates maps showing property boundaries, via Melways
reference and street address:

There used to be a way of creating a PDF, but I can't find it now, so I
use (Windows) Cntrl-Print-Screen to capture the screen image.

This site:

can find nearby survey marks, based on a street address. Only a subset
of survey marks have elevation, but a few of those in the area should
enable the elevation of the contours to be established.

Some other online maps, including one of marine areas with satellite
images of land, can be found from the main
page under Online Services: Interactive Maps.

BTW, some guides for walks in forests can be found at: DSE Home > Forests > Regional Information
The site has maps of many trails all around Australia: