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Scientific Investigations Map 3184

Prepared in cooperation with the
State of Vermont, Vermont Agency of Natural Resources,
Vermont Geological Survey

Bedrock Geologic Map of Vermont

By Nicholas M. Ratcliffe,1 Rolfe S. Stanley,2* Marjorie H. Gale,3 Peter J. Thompson,3 and Gregory J. Walsh4

With contributions by Norman L. Hatch, Jr.,1* Douglas W. Rankin,1 Barry L. Doolan,2 Jonathan Kim,3 Charlotte J. Mehrtens,2 John N. Aleinikoff,5 and J. Gregory McHone6

Cartography by Linda M. Masonic1

1U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA 20192.
2University of Vermont, Burlington, VT 05405.
3Vermont Geological Survey, Waterbury, VT 05671.
4U.S. Geological Survey, Montpelier, VT 05601.
5U.S. Geological Survey, Denver, CO 80225.
6Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT 06459.
Thumbnail of report PDF (55.2 MB)
Image of the north and south sheets of Vermont combined


The Bedrock Geologic Map of Vermont is the result of a cooperative agreement between the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the State of Vermont. The State’s complex geology spans 1.4 billion years of Earth's history. The new map comes 50 years after the most recent map of the State by Charles G. Doll and others in 1961 and a full 150 years since the publication of the first geologic map of Vermont by Edward Hitchcock and others in 1861. At a scale of 1:100,000, the map shows an uncommon level of detail for State geologic maps. Mapped rock units are primarily based on lithology, or rock type, to facilitate derivative studies in multiple disciplines.

The 1961 map was compiled from 1:62,500-scale or smaller maps. The current map was created to integrate more detailed (1:12,000- to 1:24,000-scale) modern and older (1:62,500-scale) mapping with the theory of plate tectonics to provide a framework for geologic, tectonic, economic, hydrogeologic, and environmental characterization of the bedrock of Vermont.

The printed map consists of three oversize sheets (52 x 76 inches). Sheets 1 and 2 show the southern and northern halves of Vermont, respectively, and can be trimmed and joined so that the entire State can be displayed as a single entity. These sheets also include 10 cross sections and a geologic structure map. Sheet 3 on the front consists of descriptions of 486 map units, a correlation of map units, and references cited. Sheet 3 on the back features a list of the 195 sources of geologic map data keyed to an index map of 7.5-minute quadrangles in Vermont, as well as a table identifying ages of rocks dated by uranium-lead zircon geochronology.

Digital files, including a GIS database, can be downloaded from this Web site. The digital files are offered in several formats:

  • AdobeTM Acrobat PDF
  • ESRITM shapefile (ZIP file with base or ZIP file without base)
  • Google EarthTM KMZ
  • Map images in TIFF and JPEG formats

Thumbnail of PDF of Sheet 2 (North) (58.6 MB)
Thumbnail of PDF of Sheet 3 (Front) (3.36 MB)
Thumbnail of PDF of Sheet 1 (South) (55.3 MB)
Thumbnail of PDF of Sheet 3 (Back) (1.66 MB)

Posted April 11, 2012

  • SIM3184_1.PDF (55.3 MB)
  • SIM3184_2.PDF (58.6 MB)
  • SIM3184_3_front_print.PDF
    (3.36 MB)
  • SIM3184_3_front_search.PDF
    (3.54 MB)

    Note on sheet 3: Two PDF files are provided for the front of sheet 3, with two differently sized artboards due to a problem associated with the search and find features in Adobe Acrobat. In the full-size print file (77- x 54-inch artboard) the search and find features do not automatically pan to the proper location, making it difficult to find searched text. Search and find correctly pans in the search file with the smaller artboard (44- x 35-inch artboard), but the document is tiled into six separate pages.

  • SIM3184_3_back.PDF
    (1.66 MB)

For additional information contact:
Gregory J. Walsh
U.S. Geological Survey
P.O. Box 628
87 State Street, Room 324
Montpelier, VT 05601
Telephone: (802) 828–4528
Fax: (802) 828–4465

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge.

Suggested citation:

Ratcliffe, N.M., Stanley, R.S., Gale, M.H., Thompson, P.J., and Walsh, G.J., 2011, Bedrock geologic map of Vermont: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3184, 3 sheets, scale 1:100,000.

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Page Last Modified: Thursday, 01-Dec-2016 17:24:51 EST

Thumbnail of PDF of Sheet 2 (North) Thumbnail of PDF of Sheet 1 (South)