USGS Science in the Lake Tahoe Basin


Bathymetry Data and Images

Bathymetry Data

Multibeam Data

The Multibeam Survey (the use of high-resolution multibeam mapping systems) permits a cost-effective way to precisely map the bathymetry of large areas of the ocean floor with 100% coverage. The system also simultaneously collects backscatter (similar to sidescan sonar) imagery that results in a complimentary and co-registered data set that is related to the distribution of lake-floor materials and textures. The backscatter (Backscatter data) and bathymetry (Multibeam data) files are in ArcInfo export (.e00) format.


The SHOALS survey only mapped the nearshore section of the lake out to about -35 m and the land area up to about 60 m. The data only covers areas of the lake about 10 m depth or less, essentially the shoreline.

Download Multibeam Data Download Backscatter Data Download Shoals Data

High-Resolution Imagery

Three high resolution images are available. The image resolution is 300 dots per inch, and the file size is 30 MB once uncompressed.

Perspective Views

A look onto the bottom of Lake Tahoe from different view angles. A second set of images is available from the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center: Selected Oblique Views. Click on the images below for a larger view and explanation.

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