Every week, I'll offer some wood wisdom gleaned from Registered Maine Guides I've known.
How To Read a Topo Map
Topographical maps — whether downloaded from the Web or the old-style ones printed by the United States Geological Survey — work on the principle of color coding:
Brown — Indicates contour lines, signifying changes in elevation.
Blue — Indicates water, including lakes, rivers, and streams.
Green — Signifies vegetated areas over six feet in elevation.
White — Signifies areas with vegetation under six feet in elevation, such as swamps and bogs.
Black — Is used for man-made features such as buildings and roads.
Red — Marks major highways, although it can also signify the boundaries of public lands.