National Topographic System 1:250,000 Base Map

The B.C. Government has produced a 1:250,000 scale base map of the province, based on the Canadian National Topographic System (NTS) topographical maps. This vector map product was developed by scanning and restructuring various lithographic layers of the federal paper map series.

Product Details

The 1:250,000 topographic baseline data includes:

  • Planimetry
  • Survey control
  • 1:20,000 & 1:50,000 reference grids
  • Contours
  • Wooded areas
  • Reference data

Sheet boundaries follow those of the federal maps and may be joined or extended maps. There was a non-standard offset transformation from NAD27 to NAD83.

Unlike Terrain Resource Information Management (TRIM) products, there was no direct data compilation in the creation of this base map.

File Formats

Digital map files are intended to be used in Geographic Information Systems (GIS). The formats supported are:

  • MicroStation
  • ArcInfo
  • ESRI shapefile (Albers or UTM)
  • DGN (Albers or UTM)
  • MOEP (UTM only)
  • SAIF (UTM only)

The product includes the digital base map, the digital elevation model (DEM), or both.

How to Acquire

The NTS 1:250,000 topographic map data can be ordered from the Base Map Online Store or opened in Google Earth:

NTS 1:250,000 base map datasets can be downloaded from the B.C. Data Catalogue:




1:250K digital base map, NTS series (base map & DEM)


1:250K digital base map, NTS series (base map only)


1:250K digital base map, NTS series (DEM only)


Delivery Times

The product will be available to download in the requested format within minutes of placing a Base Map Online Store order. You will receive an email with an FTP link. The order will be purged from the FTP server after seven (7) days.