Topographic Map Errors

List of Potential Map Errors

This page documents observations that represent potential errors on topographic maps. This list serves two purposes:

  • It serves as a reference for people to check for potential map errors so when travelling into terrain they have not visited before they can be aware of issues which may affect them
  • It allows people to report potential errors they may have noticed themselves, so these items can be added to the list for the benefit of others.

The items in this list have been compiled from observations, mostly field observations but sometimes from comparison of features on a map, comparison of two maps or comparison of a map with an aerial photograph.

It is important to note that these observations have not been confirmed by the Land and Property Management Authority, the government department that produces the topographic maps. The potential map errors listed here should be checked by the user before treating them as actual map errors.

This page includes extracts of topographic maps and aerial photographs prepared by the Department of Lands and from SIX, the Department of Lands Spatial Information Exchange. The copyright of all such topographic maps and aerial photographs and material from SIX is held by the Department of Lands.

If you know of any potential map errors you would like to contribute please contact Ian on ithorpe@evanspeck.com

Item Map Description (GR matches map unless noted otherwise)
1 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition There is a ridge of sorts shown running roughly north-west from GR477003 to GR475007. The ridge is shown on the map to be contiguous. However, there is a substantial break in the ridgeline, at about the point that the park boundary intersects the ridge. See the photograph of the ridge, taken from the approximate location of spot height 959 at GR475001. [IT]
2 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition At the loop of Bungleboori Creek at approx. GR488007, a cliff line is marked north of the creek. I have crossed Bungleboori Creek at that point. There was no cliff on the northern side of the creek at that point. From the look of the land, I would judge that where I crossed there was no cliff on the northern side for at least 50 metres east and west – i.e. if there is a cliff line generally on the northern side, there is a gap at least 100 metres wide at that point. [IT]
3 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition At the loop of Bungleboori Creek at approx. GR488007, a cliff line is marked south of the creek. I have crossed Bungleboori Creek at that point. There was no cliff on the southern side of the creek at that point. The ridge running down from the south finishes with rock outcrops that are not sufficiently continuous to be considered a cliff line at the northern-most end. [IT]
4 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition There is a ridge shown running north-west from approx. GR491007 to approx. GR486014. The ridge is shown as having five separate knolls, each between 920 and 940 metres elevation. However, from my observation the knoll at approx. GR488009 is markedly higher than any other point on that ridge, by 20 metres or more. By way of illustration, see the photo taken from the knoll, looking east. The view should be of the knoll shown on the map at approx. GR489009, because that knoll is shown as being about the same height (they are both between 920 and 940 metres elevation) and due east. However, the photo instead shows the cliff line of the next ridge east. According to the map that cliff line is at 900 metres elevation and so should be obscured by the knoll at GR489009. [IT]
5 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition At approx. GR480972 there is an intermittent stream shown joining Dumbano Creek from the north. This side creek does not join Dumbano Creek at that point. This side creek swings east just before it would have intersected at that point, joining Dumbano Creek at about GR481973 (just underneath the ‘u’ of Dumbano). See map extract. [IT]
6 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition The spot height 1057 at GR471955 cannot be 1057m above sea level – it is within a 1060 metre contour line and so has to be higher than 1060 metres. The 1:100000 Wallerawang topographic map gives that same spot height as 1075 metres. It would seem that the 5 and 7 were transposed when the 1:25000 topographic map was prepared. See map extract. [IT]
7 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition The intermittent stream that is shown as looping into Goochs Crater (GR459949) does not do so. At about the ‘c’ of crater it continues south east to just under the ‘r’ of crater. See map extract. [IT]
8 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition
The barrier marked at GR500949, co-inciding with the boundary of the National Park, is not in that location. It is about 300 metres back up the fire trail, at (8-digit grid reference) GR49849524. See map extract.
By the way, does this mean that the barrier is not at the park boundary, or is the park boundary not as shown? [IT]
9 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition Related to Item 8 above: In the vicinity of the barrier, the location of the park boundary on the 2nd edition map differs from the location of the park boundary shown on the 1st edition map. Which is correct – or has the boundary actually changed?

Further, the whole of the boundary between the National Park and Newnes State Forest differs in location from the 1st edition map to the 2nd edition map. For example, spot height 959 at GR475001 (GDA94) was previously shown as inside Blue Mountains National Park, it is now shown as inside Newnes State Forest. Conversely, spot height 1018 at GR454951 (GDA94) was previously shown as inside Newnes State Forest, it is now shown as inside Blue Mountains National Park.[IT]

10 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition There is a four wheel drive track shown running approximately NNE from the track junction at approx. GR468968 to approx. GR473977. This four wheel drive track is shown as running immediately adjacent to an intermittent stream from GR471976 to GR473977. However, there is no four wheel drive track in that location. From personal experience I can advise that when approaching the intermittent stream from the north-west and meeting it at approx. GR471977, there was no evidence of a track of any kind. I am also advised by another bushwalker that south of that point there is a faint walking track that follows the indicated line of the four wheel drive track, but it is difficult to follow. See map extract. [IT]
11 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition There is a four wheel drive track shown running approximately north from the track junction at approx. GR481958 to approx. GR482968. However, there is no four wheel drive track in that location. There is a walking track in that location, but it is a “pad” rather than a formed track. In my experience most of the tracks that are marked as walking tracks on the 1:25000 series topographic maps are either formed tracks or are sufficiently well used that a relatively inexperienced bush walker could follow them. In contrast, in my opinion the walking track in this location is sufficiently faint that a relatively inexperienced bushwalker would have difficulty in following it and even an experienced bushwalker might cross the track without realizing it was there. In my opinion it should not be marked on the map, unless it is indicated to be a faint track. (There was once a four wheel drive track in the location shown, judging by the gap in the taller trees that the walking track follows. That would explain why on the aerial photo there is line that appears to be a four wheel drive track.) See map extract. [IT]
12 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition There is a four wheel drive track shown running approximately south from the track junction at approx. GR450966 to approx. GR450956. However the southern part, from (8-digit grid reference) GR45039586 to the end, is not a four wheel drive track but a walking track. See map extract. [IT]
13 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition Further to Item 12, the walking track does not finish at the location shown but continues south down the ridge towards Goochs Crater. At approximately the park boundary it splits and becomes fainter. Sections of the walking track are faint and in my opinion, whilst it is better defined that the walking track discussed in Item 11 above it is still fainter than most walking tracks marked on the topographic maps. Furthermore, on the Wollangambe map there are a number of walking tracks of a standard similar to that from GR45039586 to GR450956 – if this track is to be marked then the other tracks of similar standard should also be marked. See map extract. [IT]
14 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition Cliff Lines Generally (A). I understand that LPMA as a rule of thumb considers that a cliff should be at least 10 metres high and at least 75 metres long to be marked on the map. From my experience walking in the area, there are many cliffs on the west half of the Wollangambe map that fit that rule of thumb but are not marked on the map. For example, the majority of the stretch of the Wollangambe River from approx. GR474936 to approx. GR509924, a distance of approximately 6 km along the river, is uncrossable because of the cliffs on either one side or both sides of the river. In places these cliffs are in excess of 40 metres in height. However, there are no cliffs marked on the map in that area. Furthermore, the contour lines marked on the map cannot be used as a reliable indication of the likelihood of cliff lines, because in some areas the contour lines are relatively widely spaced but there are still cliffs. [IT]
15 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition
Cliff Lines Generally (B). There are breaks in a number of the cliff lines marked on the map. These breaks are not shown on the map. See item 2 and 3 above for two examples. Another example:
At approx. GR512914 – the intermittent stream running in from the north does not cross a cliff line. Rather the cliffs curve into the gully formed by the creek. [IT]
16 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition Related to Item 16. Another example of a break in a cliff line not shown on the map:

At approx. GR498913 – there is no cliff at the apex of the spur. [IT]

17 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition Related to Item 16. Another example of a break in a cliff line not shown on the map:

At approx. GR542914 – at the end of the spur, opposite the track marked coming to the river from the other side of the river, there are rock outcrops but no contiguous cliff, and there is a rough pad up through the outcrops. [IT]

18 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition Related to Item 16. Another example of a break in a cliff line not shown on the map:

At approx. GR536911 – there is a wide break in the marked cliff line north of Bell Creek. [IT]

19 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition Cliff Lines Generally (C). The cliff lines that are marked on the map are not always shown in the correct location. This is particularly the case when cliffs are shown either side of a creek or river. For example, at approx. GR508917, the map indicates that the cliffs either side of the Wollangambe River form a gorge approximately 200 metres wide. However, the aerial photograph on the back of the map indicates that the cliffs are approximately 50 metres apart at that location. This is an overall error of 150 metres and portrays the gorge to be four times wider than it actually is. [IT]
20 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition There is an intermittent stream shown on the map as running from approx. GR512918 to the Wollangambe River. In fact, that watercourse starts at the grid reference as shown but fades out at (8-digit grid reference) GR51169198. From the shape of the land, the watercourse is not heading for the Wollangambe River but rather for the intermittent stream that feeds from Wollangambe Crater. [IT]
21 Wollangambe 1:25000 2nd Edition The location of the track to Wollangambe River from Mt Wilson is not wholly as shown on the map – refer to marked-up corrections on map extract. [IT]
22 Rock Hill 1:25000 2nd Edition
The indicated line of the cliff at approximate grid reference 488056 is not correct. The furthest south-east extent of the cliff line is approximately 100 metres further south-east than shown – refer to the annotation on the map. This was observed by comparing the aerial photo with the map, then confirmed in the field by walking to the south-east extent of the cliff and taking a GPS reading. See map extract. [IT]
23 Rock Hill 1:25000 2nd Edition The indicated line of the intermittent stream at approximate grid reference 499053 is not correct. The intermittent stream swings to the south-west, then turns 90 degrees when it enters the gully at approximate grid reference 498053. This was observed in the field, after an attempt to walk down the intermittent stream into the gully. See map extract. [IT]
24 Rock Hill 1:25000 2nd Edition There is a break in the cliff line at approximate grid reference 504047. This was observed in the field – it is easy to walk up the intermittent stream at that point, through the indicated line of the cliff. [IT]
25 Rock Hill 1:25000 2nd Edition There is an intermittent stream that joins Nayook Creek at approximate grid reference 546113. It originates at or about the line of the higher cliff line, as shown in the map extract, then runs north down the middle of the ridge, forming a small shallow gully in the middle of the ridge, then turns east, cuts through the lower cliff line and runs into Nayook Creek. It’s junction with Nayook Creek is not readily apparent. It causes a small break in the lower cliff line (no more than 10 metres wide), forming a pass through that cliff line. I did not observe the intermittent stream that is already shown on the map as originating approximately where the actual stream originates. That stream may also exist, although it seems unlikely that it’s path is exactly as shown on the map, given it’s proximity to the actual stream. [IT]
26 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition
The vehicular track shown running from Newnes at approximately 424261 to the small building at 408261 is shown to remain on the south side of Little Capertee Creek, apart from one short stretch at approximately 413262 where it is shown to run right in the creek. However, in fact the track crosses over Little Capertee Creek at approximately 413262, and is on the north side of the creek for its length west of that point, until it fades out at approximately 407262 (from memory).
[IT]
27 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition Further to Item 26, there is a side track which leaves the main track at approximately 409262 (again, from memory). This side track crosses the creek back to the south side of the creek to reach the small building at 408261. [IT]
28 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition There are three separate cliffs shown on the map between 382266 and 388266. However, these cliff lines are essentially one unbroken cliff line. The unbroken nature of the cliff line has been observed by walking under the cliff line, looking for routes up through it. The cliff line also wiggles more than shown on the map. An approximate line of the cliff is shown on the map extract. This approximate line was drawn on the map by comparing the “East Coast Aerial Photos (Med-High Resolution)” with the “Topographic maps (Current Series)” on LPI’s Spatial Information eXchange viewer. [IT]
29 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition
There is a cliff line that is shown as finishing at approximately 410265. However, in fact it continues westward from that point, approximately following the line of the 700 metre contour, finishing at approximately 405266. The existence of the greater extent of the cliff line has been observed during bushwalks. An approximate line of the cliff is shown on the map extract. This approximate line was drawn on the map by comparing the “East Coast Aerial Photos (Med-High Resolution)” with the “Topographic maps (Current Series)” on LPI’s Spatial Information eXchange viewer. [IT]
30 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition
There is no cliff shown on the map at the general area of 409269. However, in fact there is a cliff line running roughly east-west, from approximately 407269 to 409269, and another cliff line running roughly north-south, from approximately 408266 to 409269. The existence of these cliffs has been observed during bushwalks. From measurements from photographs taken from the top of the east-west cliff, I estimate that the north-south cliff, at its highest point, is approximately 60 metres from the top of the cliff to the top of the trees at the base of the cliff. Approximate lines of the two cliffs are shown on the map extract. These approximate lines were drawn on the map by comparing the “East Coast Aerial Photos (Med-High Resolution)” with the “Topographic maps (Current Series)” on LPI’s Spatial Information eXchange viewer. [IT]
31 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition In addition to the two cliffs mentioned in Item 30, the intermittent stream shown in that location forms a short canyon. The lower end of the canyon is at approximately 409269 and the upper end is at approximately 410271. This canyon cuts across what appears on the map to be a saddle, between the two knolls shown at approximately 409271 and 410270 respectively. On the map the contours between the knolls are few and widely spaced. This gives the impression that walking from one knoll to the other involves a small and relatively gentle descent then climb. However, the canyon is deep and cannot be crossed, particularly in its south-west half, where I estimate that it is as deep as the cliffs mentioned in Item 30 – i.e. at least 60 metres deep. Only at the very upper end of it (410271) is it possible to scramble across the rocks that separate the canyon from the gully to its north-east. See the approximate line of the canyon on the map extract, a photo montage from inside the canyon and also an aerial photo extract. [IT]
32 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition There is an intermittent stream shown on the map as running continuously from the approximate location of Canobla Gap and through the clearing at 408302, continuing until it joins Canobla Creek. However, the line of the watercourse actually fades out shortly after it enters the clearing. It fades out in the grass of the clearing, at approximately 406301. See map extract. [IT]
33 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition There is a vehicular track that is shown as following the approximate line of the intermittent stream mentioned in item 32, for part of its length. This track is shown on the map to leave the line of the intermittent stream in the vicinity of the clearing, veering north away from the line of the intermittent stream by as much as 150 metres. See map extract. However, the track does not veer away from that line. Instead it follows the marked line of the intermittent stream – in other words, the line of the intermittent stream as marked on the map is, in fact, the line of the vehicular track. [IT]
34 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition The location of Baal Bone Point on the 2nd Edition map differs from the location on the 1st Edition map. The location of Baal Bone Point as per the Geographic Names Board web site, -33°12’54” latitude 150°04’04” longitude, is much closer to the location on the 1st Edition map. [IT]
35 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition The location of Tarpeian Rock on the 2nd Edition map differs from the location on the 1st Edition map. Unfortunately, the Geographic Names Board web site does not clarify this matter – it gives the same location for Tarpeian Rock as it does for Baal Bone Point. [IT]
36 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition There is an unmarked cliff in the “old” location of Tarpeian Rock – i.e. in the approximate location of Tarpeian Rock as per the 1st Edition map. See the map extract for the approximate extent of the cliff line. [IT]
37 Ben Bullen 1:25000 2nd Edition There is an unmarked cliff in the approximate location of Tarpeian Rock as per the 2nd Edition map. See the map extract for the approximate extent of the cliff line. [IT]
38 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition At approximate grid reference 432706 the contour is shown incorrectly – if the contour was correct, the watercourse shown running south-west in that area would go down into a gully, up out of the gully, over a saddle and down the other side. This does not occur. Whilst the approximate line of the watercourse is correct, the contour line is incorrect. See map extract. [IT]
39 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition
There are a number of cliff lines on the map which appear to be pointing the “wrong way” – that is, the small lines which are intended to indicate the “fall” of the cliff appear to be pointing uphill, not downhill. This sort of error (if they prove to be errors) is particularly problematic for persons in the field, because a quick glance at the cliff as marked on the map may lead the map reader to conclude that (for example) a hillside that actually slopes down to the east, instead slopes down to the west. This may lead to serious confusion when the person finds themselves (say) looking at a hill when they expected a gully. Under ideal conditions, of course, the person reading the map will spot the error and ignore it. However, under less ideal conditions, such as when the person reading the map is tired or in a hurry, or the onset of dusk makes reading the map harder, such an error may be missed completely until it is too late.
The approximate mid-point of the first such cliff line which have been identified as potentially pointing the wrong way is at grid reference 447698. See map extract. [IT]
40 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition Further to Item 39, the second cliff line identified as potentially pointing the wrong way is at grid reference 456691. See map extract. [IT]
41 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition Further to Item 39, the third cliff line identified as potentially pointing the wrong way is at grid reference 505689. See map extract. [IT]
42 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition Further to item 39, the fourth cliff line identified as potentially pointing the wrong way is at grid reference 510700. See left highlighted cliff on map extract. [IT]
43 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition Further to item 39, the fifth cliff line identified as potentially pointing the wrong way is at grid reference 513703. See right highlighted cliff on map extract. [IT]
44 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition Further to item 39, the sixth cliff line identified as potentially pointing the wrong way is at grid reference 523731. See map extract. [IT]
45 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition Further to item 39, the seventh cliff line identified as potentially pointing the wrong way is at grid reference 545701. See map extract. [IT]
46 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition At approximately GR446724 or GR446725 there is a knoll. This knoll is not marked on the map and the contours at that location in fact suggest ground sloping to the east, which is incorrect. See map extract. [IT]
47 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition There is a spur shown rising to the west from the creek junction at approximate GR447707. The contours on the spur suggest that it is very steep from elevation 740 to elevation 800 but markedly gentler below that. Indeed, the contours from elevation 740 to elevation 800 are close enough (60 metres vertically in 50 metres horizontally) to suggest impassable cliffs. However, in reality the nose of the spur has a reasonably consistent gradient down to the creek, save for the flatter part above the 800 metre contour. Apart from a few small scrambles, the nose of the spur can be quite readily walked down, except at the bottom where it does form a low cliff. See map extract. [IT]
48 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition At approximately GR461681 the map shows a saddle which is a 5 contour (i.e. at least 80 metre) descent from the hills north and south of it. The map is wrong here: from the hill south of the saddle to the saddle itself is a drop of probably less than 20 metres (i.e. one contour at the most). However, the saddle is a very narrow causeway, with cliffs either side. See map extract. [IT]
49 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition
At approximately GR493702 the map shows a saddle with a steep 2 contour rise on either side. There is no steep 2 contour rise on either side as the map suggests. The saddle is in fact no more than a shallow dip in the ridge. See map extract. [IT]
50 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition
The cliff shown finishing at approximately GR458695 actually continues around to and inside the gully at approximately GR460695. There is a brief break in this cliff line at the entrance to the gully at approximately GR459695. Refer map extract. (Ignore the black line with the arrow and the “C3” – that was the part of the planned route of a bushwalk.) [IT]
51 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition The ridge that runs up from Razorback Creek at approximately GR460694 is far steeper at the bottom than implied by the contours on the map. It could almost be characterized as a cliff at the bottom – we found just one steep ramp where we could make our way up from the creek onto the ridge. This steepness applies to the lowest 50 vertical metres (approximately) – above that the ridge suddenly becomes a relatively gentle gradient. See map extract. [IT]
52 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition The small ridge than runs down at approximately 483702 is far steeper than implied at the bottom. The contours suggest a 20 metre rise in about 50 horizontal metres at the bottom. Instead it is a cliff at the bottom. See map extract. [IT]
53 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition The saddle at approximately 476681 is deeper and sharper than implied by the contours. See map extract. In addition, the saddle is formed by a line of pagodas that may not be traversable. We crossed from the north to the south by going west to 474681 then cutting back east. We found the gully deeper than expected. [IT]
54 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition The ridge centered at approximately 458667 appears to be missing one or possibly two 20 metre contours at the top. The ridge as marked suggests a very flat ridge approximately 200m wide. In fact the ridge has a well-defined ridge line. In addition, there is a distinct climb onto it from the east. Lastly, there is a distinct descent from the ridge down into the saddle between the ridge and Mount Wilworril. See map extract. [IT]
55 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition There is a gully at approximately 449710 that is not shown on the map. It is short but is broader there than the gully formed by the watercourse that is shown to meet Razorback Creek at 449712. See map extract. This was observed during a walk and subsequently confirmed by reference to the aerial photo. [IT]
56 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition The gully / watercourse at 449708 has a sharper bend than shown on the map. See map extract and aerial photo. [IT]
57 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition There is a knoll at approximately 426695 that appears higher than depicted on the map – it appears to be missing one 20 metre contour at the top. See map extract and aerial photo from SIX Viewer. [IT]
58 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition The cliff line shown running around the valley north east of Mount Wilworril has an extension into the saddle at GR454666 which is not shown on the map. See map extract. [IT]
59 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition The watercourse shown running from approx. 479721 down to approx. 474717 has sharper bends in its upper half than shown on the map. See the extract from SIX viewer, which shows both the aerial photo and topographic details as per the topographic map. [IT]
60 Coricudgy 1:25000 1st Edition Further to item 59, the watercourse forms a gully which is much deeper than depicted by the contours on the map and has one wall which is a cliff at least 25m high from memory. [IT]
61 Mount Pomany 1:25000 1st Edition The line of the cliff west of Sheep Station Point, at approximately 474754, is not shown correctly. See map extract and aerial photo detail from SIX viewer, including topographic details. From recollection, the cliff gets as close as 25m to the centreline of the ridge at closest approach. [IT]
62 Mount Pomany 1:25000 1st Edition At approximately 451737 there is a small spur running down to Widden Brook. This spur is not large but should be large enough to show in one or two contour lines, but no indication of the spur is shown. See map extract. [IT]
63 Mount Pomany 1:25000 1st Edition At approximately 454739 there is a cliff that extends into the gully. This is not shown on the map. See map extract. [IT]
64 Mount Pomany 1:25000 1st Edition The contours on the map do not indicate the pronounced spur that drops down from approximately 455739 to where the intermittent watercourse forms a hairpin bend at approximately 454737. See map extract. [IT]
65 Mount Pomany 1:25000 1st Edition The cliff line shown at approximately 496810 is actually further east and has a different shape. See map extract. [IT]
66 Mount Pomany 1:25000 1st Edition The cliff line shown on the west side of Kerry Mountain with approximate centre coordinates of 538737 was not observed in the field. See map extract. [IT]

The initials of the person who made the observation are at the end of the description.

IT – Ian Thorpe