Determine Land Ownership


When developing a new hike, it’s a good idea to check out who owns the land that your hike will traverse. In the past, we had paper maps issued by the Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) that showed color-coded land ownership including BLM, Forest Service, NM State, private, Native American, and even Albuquerque Open Space! Well, you can still order those maps from the BLM, but they are being replaced by an app that works on mobile devices and IPads as well as PC’s. The app is updated each year in June (the old paper maps were updated perhaps every 10 years). The app was developed with hunters in mind, and treats Open Space the same as private ownership.

One of the nice features is that you can see mile marker numbers along major highways. Another nice feature is that you can add your own track to a data layer and view it superimposed on the color-coded land ownership shown in CarryMap. To do this, you’ll need also to use GPS Visualizer (a browser based software described in Tools for GPS Data) to convert your track to a Google Earth file.

Here are the steps:

  1. Install CarryMap referring to the BLM website for instructions on how to download and install this app.
  2. Install the New Mexico Hunting Recreation Map (instructions for mobile devices; click on the Full State Map link for PC’s). Note: DO NOT install the topo package.
  3. Use GPS Visualizer to convert your .gpx file to a Google .kml or .kmz file. Go to this page on the GPS Visualizer website, choose the file on your hard drive you want to display, then choose Google Earth kml as the output format. The result will go into your Downloads folder.
  4. Start the CarryMap app. The NM map will come up. Click on Content and then on NM Hunting Recreation Map. Keep the defaults. To add the .kmz file you created using GPS Visualizer, click on the + symbol to the right of Layers. Click on the kmz file in your Downloads folder. Click on the green Add button. The application will show your track with waypoint symbols you have set in your original .gpx file. If no waypoint symbol is set, a box appears for each waypoint. No waypoint labels are shown.

You can print the map with or without a legend that explains the color-coding. Alternatively, you can take a screenshot and edit the resulting image in the image processing software of your choice.

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