GIS Data Requirements for Watershed Assessments

Data Directions has provided GIS Starter Data to persons interested in Watershed analysis.  The GIS Starter Data is a comprehensive set of GIS data layers, focused on a specific Oregon Fifth Field Watershed as defined by the Governors Watershed Enhancement Board.  

Data is provided to cover the entire fifth field watershed and includes: the watershed boundary, city boundaries, lakes, streams and rivers, roads, public land survey system, generalized ownership and land use zoning, USGS 3D DEMs, and USGS 1:24,000 topographic maps.

Data is pre-configured offering themes which detail land use, ownership, and a 3D View of the watershed.  Optional data layers are available and include detailed soils data, slope, aspect, vector contours, and more.

GIS Data Starter Package includes:

Base maps covering the Watershed include:  Roads, Streams & Lakes, Public Land Survey System,  USGS Quad Index and  Topographic Maps, City and County Boundaries, Aerial   Photography, Soils Maps, Watershed boundaries and Precipitation Maps.

 Current Land Use and permitted use as defined by current Zoning  is useful to define uses which effect the watershed now or may in the future.

Land Ownership data is critical when performing Watershed Assessments.   Land Owners within the watershed are stake holders in the watershed and have a vested interest in watershed quality.  Their participation should be encouraged.  Current and accurate Land ownership data is typically only available through the local County government.  

Digital Elevation Models (DEMs), provide data  related to  elevation.   From this elevation data additional data may be derived including:   slope, aspect, view sheds, stream gradients, and contours.  DEMs may also be used to create 3D Views of a Watershed.  The denser the DEM data the more accurate the  information generated from the model.


USGS 7.5' Topographic Maps are the standard maps used in performing watershed assesments.  

Data Directions can also provide mapping services including data acquisition, compilation, configuration, analysis, and map production.  Data Directions has provided consultation services to a number of Oregon Watershed Enhancement Boards, presented workshops on Watershed Modeling and Analysis at both the 2001 Eastern Oregon GIS Conference in Pendleton, OR and the GIS in Action 2001 conference in Portland, OR, and currently supports several watershed related projects.

For additional information, please contact  Data Directions (541) 345-4MAP, or email:

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