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the surface features of a place or region. The topography of a region includes hills, valleys, streams, lakes, bridges, tunnels, and roads


Height above sea level


the difference in elevation between the highest and lowest parts of an area


feature of Earth's surface (examples: mountains, valley, hill, plain, mesa)


area of level land, usually at low elevation and often covered with grasses with low relief


A landform with high elevation and high relief

mountain range

a series of connected mountains with the same general shape and structure


a large area of flat land elevated high above sea level

landform region

a large area of land where the topography is similar


a two-dimensional, or flat, representation of Earth's surface or a portion of it as seen from above


a sphere on which a map (especially of the earth) is represented


Used to compare distance on a map or globe to distance on Earth's surface.


On a map, pictures used by mapmakers to stand for features on Earth's surface.


shows which symbols are used on a map and what they represent


an imaginary circle around the middle of the earth, halfway between the North Pole and the South Pole


one half of the earth

prime meridian

line of the global grid running from the North Pole to the South Pole through Greenwich, England


distance north or south of the Equator, measured in degrees


measures distance east and west from the Prime Meridian

Global Positioning System

a navigational system involving satellites and computers that can determine the latitude and longitude of a receiver on Earth by computing the time difference for signals from different satellites to reach the receiver

topographic map

a map that shows the surface features of an area

contour line

A line on a topographic map that connects points of equal elevation

index contour

On a topographic map, a heavier contour line that is labeled with elevation of that contour line in round units

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