Hey everybody, this is JJ and I'm going to give you a quick lesson on how to read contour lines. Unfortunately, I haven't found a great way to show you the graphic representations, so I've taken some images from old survival manuals to help us understand. First, let's talk about what contour lines are. Essentially, contour lines measure the distance from sea level, which is known as elevation. However, they also provide information about the type of terrain you're observing. There are three types of contour lines: index contour lines, intermediate contour lines, and dotted supplementary lines. The index contour line, as shown in this picture, displays the elevation. The intermediate contour lines are the most commonly seen and they are not labeled. Lastly, the dotted supplementary lines are used for flat elevations. Contour lines allow you to determine the elevation of a 3D object, like a hill, when looking at a 2D representation. They form circles around a contour feature and no matter how irregular the shape of a mountain may be, the contour line will always close back into itself because it follows the same line of elevation. By analyzing the shape of the contour lines, you can identify different terrain features. Now let's begin with the most basic of these features, the peak. In this illustration, you can see a side view of a peak on the top and its representation on a map at the bottom. The center of the peak is marked by a small triangle on the map. However, it's important to note that the actual peak is indicated by the smallest enclosed circle that does not contain any other contour lines inside. This circle signifies the highest point of the peak. The triangle is not present on all peaks, so it should not...
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