• Photographing and Mapping Piers

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    Ana Ramirez, a San Diego-based photographer, talks with Kristina Jacob about her photography project, Into The Ocean – Photos of California Piers.

  • Atmospheric Rivers

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    Atmospheric Rivers are trails of moisture in the atmosphere composed of condensed water vapor. Atmospheric rivers are typically found on the boundaries of different weather zones like cyclones that form in regions other than the tropics. At any given time there are a few (between 3-5) atmospheric rivers in Earth’s […]

  • Moraines

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    Moraines are the piles of dirt and rock that are displaced by a glacier as it moves across the landscape. These debris fields exist in areas that are currently glaciated and in places where glaciers have moved through in the past. Rocks, soil and other geological materials are caught up […]

  • Conflict over Gibraltar: Who has control?

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    Gibraltar is a 6.5 square kilometer territory located south of the Spanish border, along the Strait of Gibraltar. The small area is officially an overseas territory of the United Kingdom, and has a population of nearly 30,000 people. An extensive shipping trade, banking and tourism economically support Gibraltar. An overwhelming […]

  • Why Development Aid Projects Must First Factor Local Culture

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    Why do some multi-million dollar aid projects fail? The aid itself is not generally the problem, but the lack of local, geographic specific cultural analysis in planning and implementation is most often to blame.

Physical Geography

Continental Divides in North America.

What is a Continental Divide?

A continental divide is seen as any natural (not man-man) boundary separating precipitation which in this case includes rivers, rainfall, snowfall, etc that flows into two oceans. In other words this is like a barrier that prevents rivers, etc on one side from flowing into oceans and seas on the […]

Ubari Oasis in the Category:Wadi Al Hayaa District, of the Fezzan region in southwestern Libya.

Where Does an Oasis Get Its Water?

For anyone who has ever been in a desert you know how desolate, lonely, and isolated the landscape can be. Life without reliable water sources coupled with the constant need to travel many days between the next water sources have been a theme of trade, travel and nomadic lifestyles for […]

The geography of aboveground carbon density (ACD) throughout Perú, derived at a 1-ha resolution with uncertainty reported for each hectare. Source: Asner et al, 2014.

Mapping Carbon in the Amazon

The Amazon rainforest has long been considered by scientists as critical to the health of the planet. Deemed the lungs of the Earth, the Amazon helps to keep the global carbon budget in balance by taking in large amounts of carbon dioxide. However, the rainforests of South America are constantly […]

Human Geography

Map of farming systems in Africa. Source: FAO-United Nations.

How Rapid Urbanization Threatens Human Populations: Three Effects of a Moving World

The dramatic shift of the earth’s human population to cities is not only straining urban infrastructures, but also the human population itself. Three significant human threats resulting from rapid urbanization in developing countries are increased intense agriculture from the commoditization of food, rising diabetes and heart disease rates, and brain waste of our global youth.

Showing North Koreans a picture on a tourist's camera. Photo: Roman Harak.

Tourism in North Korea

Anyone who has ever caught the travel bug probably understands the allure of the places not many Western travelers get to go, places like Iran, Cuba, and North Korea. Whether this is a reaction to the idea that we aren’t welcome or simply aren’t allowed in, many people go out […]

Pedestrian crossing in Tokyo.


Megacities are metropolitan areas that have 10 million or more residents.

Geography News

On Sept. 19, 2014, the five-day average of Antarctic sea ice extent exceeded 20 million square kilometers for the first time since 1979, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. The red line shows the average maximum extent from 1979-2014. Image Credit: NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio/Cindy Starr

New Record Extent of Sea Ice in Antarctica

The polar regions of the Earth, the Arctic Ocean and Antarctica, are of particular concern to scientists and researchers. In one sense, these areas act much like an air conditioner for the planet because of their cold, icy environments and the fact that like they reflect a high degree of […]

The far left map is the original hand-drawn map, which was used to make the two printed version on the right which were used by Napoleon and his army at Waterloo. In the original map, the Mont Saint-Jean farm is situated to the right of the road, while on the printed versions, the farm is shown as being to the left of the road.

Was an Inaccurate Map Partly Responsible for Napoleon’s Waterloo Defeat?

A French documentary maker contends that a map error ones on the reasons that Napoleon’s army was defeated by the Duke of Wellington’s forces during the Battle of Waterloo.  The documentary by Franck Ferrand entitled, “Napoléon : le défi de trop ?” explores the finding by Belgian illustrator and historian, Bernard […]

Map of the North Atlantic Ocean showing gravity anomalies. Marine gravity model of the North Atlantic (10 mGal contours). Red dots show locations of earthquakes with magnitude > 5.5 and they highlight the present-day location of the seafloor spreading ridges and transform faults. This gravity information shows the details of the plate tectonic history of the rifting of these continents including the subtle signatures of fracture zones that are currently buried by sediment.

An Ocean of Mountains

The ocean comprises a significant portion of the Earth yet it remains a field we know the least about. Humans know more about the topography of Mars than we do about the ocean floor, and our poor knowledge of seabed topography is demonstrated by the ongoing search for missing Malaysia […]

Geography 101

Continental Divides in North America.

What is a Continental Divide?

A continental divide is seen as any natural (not man-man) boundary separating precipitation which in this case includes rivers, rainfall, snowfall, etc that flows into two oceans. In other words this is like a barrier that prevents rivers, etc on one side from flowing into oceans and seas on the […]

Eratosthenes' method for determining the size of the Earth. Source: Geodesy for the Layman, 1984.

Early Efforts to Measure the Circumference of the Earth

Science and technology is intertwined with the advancement of the human condition. The problems that men and women face on Earth demand solutions, and the solutions to these problems often have farther reaching implications than the original task they were built for. From the wheel to the iPad each new […]


The Albers projection is an example of a conic map projection.

Types of Map Projections

The ways in which we visualize the world are varied- we have pictures, maps, globes, satellite imagery, hand drawn creations and more. What kinds of things can we learn from the way we see the world around us? For centuries mankind has been making maps of the world around them, […]

Use a strip of paper or a ruler to measure distances on a map based on the scale bar of the map.

Using Interdisciplinary World Map Activities to Connect Your Students to Other Cultures

Whether you are a homeschool teacher or classroom teacher, you can connect your students to other cultures while making your lessons exploratory and interdisciplinary with just one prop: a world map! Examples for young and advanced learners alike for how to use a map in math, political history, earth/biological science, and literature are included here to get you started.


GPS sites showing the measured displacement. As the drought deepens in March of 2014, the red dots showed the greatest uplift in the Sierra Mountains. Source: Borsa et al.

Tracking the Effects of Drought in the Western U.S. with GPS

The effects of the drought that has stricken the western United States can be measured with GPS.  As anyone who has lugged around a one gallon bottle of water knows, water is heavy.  Erosion is not the only way that rivers and lakes affect the landscape, now researchers from the Scripps […]

Find Your Way Downstream with Streamer

Find Your Way Downstream with Streamer

Water is essential for life on the planet, and tool from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) makes it easy and fun to trace water flow across the United States from your own computer. The device is called Streamer, and with only a few clicks, users can follow major water ways from […]

Help Find Invasive Weeds in Hawaii

Help Find Invasive Weeds in Hawaii

Tomnod, which previously helped with crowdsourcing the search for the missing Malaysian Airlines flight, has teamed up with the Nature Conservancy to map the location of Australian Tree Ferns and African Tulip Trees in order to better understand how these invasive plants are affecting native forests in Hawaii.  More than 80 percent […]

Geography Career

Eight Ways Your Geographic Skills Enhance Your Resume

Eight Ways Your Geographic Skills Enhance Your Resume

Geographers or anyone with a history of geography education or practice have special skills that can enhance their resumes across nearly all career options. From GIS skills to graphic design to multiculturalism, here are eight ways to market your geography experience as viable job skills.

How Much do Geographers Make?

How Much do Geographers Make?

Geographers find work in a variety of disciplines both in the physical and human geography related fields.  Geographers are employed as cartographers, urban planners, climatologists, natural resource managers, and emergency management personnel; any industry requiring the development or analysis of geographic data will often have a geographer on staff.  The […]

What Can You do with a Degree in Geography?

What Can You do with a Degree in Geography?

Are you a geography major who is working in a job that allows you to apply your educational background?  Fill out the survey linked below.  All survey results will be consolidated and reported back once enough results have come in. Thanks, Caitlin Editor, Geo Lounge Fill out the survey: What […]

Geography Fun

Col Pierre Ruel and BGen Christian Barabé check the radar screen in preparation for tracking Santa Claus in December of 2007.

How to Track Santa Claus this Christmas

For over five decades, a large number of kids and grown-ups have relied on upon the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), to track the whereabouts of Santa Claus as he makes his Christmas Eve journey. How the NORAD Santa Tracking Tradition Began In 1955, a Sears Department store printed […]

The geography game "A Worldly Mind" offers 22 Human Geography elements, for 238 Countries and Territories and over 2,300 Quiz Questions.

A Worldly Mind – Free Geography Game

Doug Hibbeler, President of Response Catalyst, describes a free new geography learning game his company has debuted.   A Worldly Mind is a new smartphone and tablet app to help usually teenagers learn World Geography.  When you look around at the major problems the world is facing, all are better understood […]

For the dapper geographer in your life, try this map bow tie from Etsy.

How to Find a Unique Gift for a Geographer

If you are looking for a unique gift idea for a geographer in your life, avoid offering yet another atlas, globe, or wall map.  Find some ideas here for unique geographically themed gifts. Bespoke Map Clothing Developed by data visualization specialist Rachel Binx, Monochōme is an online clothing store that allows you to […]