Geographic Information Systems Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have bathymetric data (raster form) that I'm trying to tease out specific depth contours. For example, I would like to "create" the 150-m depth contour from the bathymetric data in the Gulf of Alaska. By using the Raster Calculator, I was able to create a raster of just the 150 m depth cells. However, I would like these to be connected as a "smooth" contour line. I'm having a hard time thinking of how to go about this. I hope this makes sense!

share|improve this question
This is a button push, as the reply indicates. However, it's better not to extract the 150 m-depth cells: contouring uses information from the neighboring cells, too, and eliminating them can produce strange (and even broken) contours. Just apply the contour tool to the original grid. – whuber Feb 7 '12 at 21:09
Thankyou! This is what I did and worked perfectly. – katy Feb 7 '12 at 22:55
Can you accept the answer so that this can be removed from the unanswered list? – the_skua Feb 8 '12 at 16:03

Use the Contour tool to do it:

Select your raster, then choose an interval of 150m. From there, you can select and extract just the 150m contour and export that to a new shapefile or feature class.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.