NRIS TopoFinder II is still in beta stage. Some features are incomplete.

Using Topofinder II

Topofinder II is still in development, but the following features are functional:

  • Map navigation - zooming, panning
  • Topo quad selection and download (TIF format in either State Plane or UTM)
  • Query forms (named features, quad names, lat/lon, township and range)
  • Location and Measure tools
  • Palettes - navigation and scale
  • Printing


Tool Bar

Zoom in - You can either click anywhere on the map or click and drag to draw a rectangle in any direction

Zoom out - Select the zoom out button and click on the map to zoom out

Pan - Select the pan button. Click and drag on the map in any direction to pan to a new location

Full extent button - Clicking on this allows you to return to the full extent for Montana.

Selection rectangle - This works much like the zoom in tool. Clicking and dragging with it will highlight quads on the map and will pop up a window with a list of quads for downloading.

Query button - will pop up a window with a menu of various ways to locate places or areas on the map.

  • Named Features - You can type in a name and a list will pop up with all the features that have that name. Clicking on an item in the list will display it on the map. You can also select just feature types or use both fields to narrow your search.
  • Map Name Search (24K) - Use this to locate a quad by name. Click on a letter to find quads beginning with that letter. Select from the pulldown menu and click "Locate" to display the quad on the map.
  • Lat/Lon Search (Decimal) - Enter the decimal coordinates for a location. Hit "Locate" and it will be displayed on the map.
  • Township and Range - Select township and range values and directions (North/South and East/West). Select sections by clicking on them. You can quickly zoom into a portion of a township by selecting any two sections diagonally.

    For example, clicking on section 6 and section 16 would zoom into sections 4-6, 7-9 and 16-18. Selecting sections 27 and 23 would zoom into sections 22-23 and 26-27.

Location tool - Move mouse over map to get coordinates in State Plane, Latitude/Longitude, and UTM.

Note: All coordinates are based on the NAD83 datum.

Measure tool - Click on the map to start measuring. You can continue clicking around the map to find a total distance between several points. To start over, Alt-Click.

Area (Polygon) Measure tool - Click on the map to start measuring. You can continue clicking around the map to find a total area bound by several points. To start over, Alt-Click.

The navigation palette and scale bar are viewable by clicking on their respective buttons. You can use the navigation palette to move to another part of the map, either by dragging the red box or using the arrow buttons. (Shift-clicking a button will move 9X farther).


Toggling Between Topo Maps and Aerial Photos

Use the radio buttons on the right side of the map to toggle between topo maps (DRGs) or aerial photos (DOQs). Sometimes you can't see images when the DOQ option is selected. Either you are not zoomed in far enough or there is no coverage for that area. There is a checkbox for adding township and range (PLSS) to the map when DOQs are selected.