North Shore Lake Superior
Strip Maps and 'Snow Rules!' grids
North Shore 'strip map'
Approximate location information is available on the north shore 'strip map'.
To initially display location information click in map.
UTM(zone 15), Lat/Long, township/range/section, 'north shore' location, and picture locations
are displayed next to a 'cursor' placed where the image was clicked.
Arbitrary coordinates may be filled into the coordinate values text boxes
and the 'upd' button on the same line pressed to convert to the other
coordinate systems and reposition the 'cursor'. An error of one section is possible in T-R-S
and will be most likely for the easternmost points.
Maps displayable at top of this page are (switch with 'radio buttons'):
- 'topo': original 1:100k USGS topo
- 'topoCUL': topo minus forest and contours
- 'DEM': USGS 1-sec DEM
- 'complete': topoCul + DEM + shape files + misc
- 'complete w/SP': 'complete' plus state parks and Hwy 61 mileposts
- 'needObs': complete 'highlighted' where new observers are wanted
- 'needObsSel': needObs overlaid by 'cell filled' shading
Note that the locations of Hwy 61 mileposts in the 'complete w/SP' map are approximate. They are shown as
red-ringed yellow circles. Every 10th mile is labeled with the '10's digits of
the mile post. In the sample at left the circle with '3' is milepost 30 while the
next one below the word 'Silver' is milepost 31.
The 'needObs' maps were obscured in places where the combination of elevation and distance
from Lake Superior was already represented by a snow observer in the 2003-04 season.
The shaded 'cells' in the 'needObsSel' version additionally show which
project 'cells' actually contain those 2003-04 observers. So, the areas with
saturated color and unobscured by cell shading are places where
an observer is most wanted. However, any observer at a location where either
the cell is not shaded OR the map is not 'whited out' could receive
observing equipment from the Snow Rules! project.
Please note that the process of selecting which areas should be 'whited out'
is an experimental technique. The intent is to 'fill in' observers where
particular combinations of elevation and distance from Lake Superior are
not currently being observed. Revised versions of the 'needObs' maps may be released
as new selection algorithms are developed.
The project grid design
The project was originally designed to try to find a snow observer in each of 125 'observation cells'.
Each cell is 10km wide along the shore and number 1 to 25 from Duluth to the
Canadian border. Away from the shore the cells are lettered 'A' through 'E'.
The cell at the shore ('A') is everything from .5km 'north' of highway 61 to
the shore and into the lake. The other widths are also 'away' from the shore
and have boundaries that parallel Highway 61. 'B' is .5 to 2.5km, 'C' is 2.5
to 6.0km, 'D' is 6 to 12km, and 'E' is 12 to 24km.
Calculation of the 'strip maps'
The coordinates of the north shore of Lake Superior were fit to
a straight line plus a Gaussian 'bell curve' (a total of 5
coefficients). That very smooth representation was used as
the 'straight edge' in preparing a 'strip map' of the entire north shore.
A somewhat less smoothed version of the shore was used to form
a series of 4 more detailed 'near shore' maps from 1:24k topo maps. (The lesser smoothing
allows more land detail and somewhat less lake to be shown given for a
given graphic height.) All such 'linearized shore' maps can be viewed/scrolled either
directly or via links in this document.
Some features have been added to the maps.
- Snow observation cells (defined for Coastal Program grant for 'Enhanced Snow
and Precipitation Monitoring within Minnesota Portions of Watersheds
Draining to Lake Superior', aka 'Snow Rules!')
are shown in white (pink on 'complete' series) . The cells (as described above) have
vertical boundaries every 10 km
along the shore and parallel to and .5, 2.5, 6, 12, and 24 km
away from Highway 61. Each 'A' cell is labeled in the lower left corner
with the 'along shore' cell number next to the popular name for
the project, 'SCO Snow Rules!'.
- The Superior Hiking Trail is show as a magenta line
(2003 GPSed version is on 'complete' and 'Tettegoughe area' maps only)
- Grants-in-aid snowmobile trails are shown in yellow
- The North Shore Trail is shown in orange.
From the 1:100k USGS topo maps:
- (see map at top of this page)
scrollable maps can be viewed. The component .gifs cover
- Duluth to Castle Danger
- Castle Danger to nr. Taconite Harbor
- Taconite Harbor to Grand Marais
- near Grand Marais to Canadian border
A 'Tettegouche area' 24k map
is available for the area from East Beaver
Bay to Kennedy Creek (includes Silver bay, Bean and Bear Lakes, Lax Lake, Tettegouche State Park, and
Wolf Ridge). That map is similar to the 'complete' 100k maps but retains much of the topo
contour information. The map is shaped to print nicely on 11x17 paper.
It has a larger amount of error in placement of shape file data than the 100k series.
The subdirectory 'print' contains versions which were used for printing the 'complete'
version on an Epson 9000 printer.
Snow Rules! main page
State Climatology Office
, DNR - Waters, 2004
, State Climatologist for Minnesota