West Virginia Conservation Agency  •  1900 Kanawha Blvd. E. •  Charleston, WV 25305  •  304-558-2204
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Web Soil Survey


This is the website for web soil survery. This is an interactive site, where the public can get all of their soils information. USDA is no longer publishing paper copies of soil surveys, all soil maps are now digital, and will have to be obtained on this site. Once you are on this site:
  1. Click the green button, "START WSS"
  2. Five tabs come up, "Area of Interest (AOI)", "Soil Map", "Soil Data Explorer", "Download Soils Data", and "Shopping Cart (Free)"
  3. What you will do on this web site is: define your Area of Interest (AOI), view the soil map within your definded AOI, explore the Interpretations for these soils, and then print a Custom Soil Resource Report for your defined AOI. In some ways this is like shopping on line. When you find some soils information, on the upper right there wil be a box labled "Add to Shopping Cart". Click on this box everytime you want to add soils information to your Custom Soil Resource Report.

Define your AOI
  • Under the AOI tab, under "Quick Navigation" click "State and County"
  • Designated your state and county that you want, and click "view"
  • Crosshairs will come up on your satellite imagery. Click in the are of the county that you want soils information for. Each time you click, you will zoom in closer to the area that you are interested in. Or, if you know where your AOI is, you can click and pull out a box to zoom in closer. Zoom in until the road names are visible on the aerial photo. In the upper left corner of the aerial photo is a vertical "Legend" tab. If you click on the "Legend tab, and scroll all the way to the bottom under "Background", you can switch to "Topographic Map" background. This may help you find yourself in the county. Click the "Legend" tab again and it will hide the legend.
  • The tools for working this map are on the top left toolbar just underneath the words "AOI Interactive Map"
  • Once you have your map scale where you can read the road names, and the location in the county that you want, you cna define your AOI. There are two red line AOI tools on this toolbar. The red line box tool that says AOI, you can click this, take your crosshairs down the map, click and pull a box out, which will define your AOI. If you click the red line polygon tool that says AOI, you can define an odd shaped AOI. You can define an odd shaped AOI by click on the red line polygon tool, take your crosshairs down to the map, click on the property corners, and at your last corner, double click. This will define an odd shaped AOI.
  • A blue hatched area will come up on your photo. This is your AOI. If you want to change this, click on the tab, "Clear AOI", and start over

Get your Soils Map
  • On the top left, click the second tab, "Soil Map", your soil map will come up with all your map units and correct acres for your AOI. Once you soil map comes up, on the upper right hand side, click on "Add to Shopping Cart".

Explore Soil Properties and Interpretations
  • Once your soil map comes up, click on the third tab, "Soil Data Explorer"
  • Under this Soil Data Explorer tab, there are 5 new tabs
  • Under the "Intro to Soils" tab, you can view explanations of selected topics, or search for topics
  • You will mostly use the next two tabs, "Suitabilities and Limitations for Use" and "Soil Properties and Qualities" tab
  • Click on "Soil Proberties and Qualities"
  • Click on "Soil Physical Properties"
  • Click on "Available Water Supply, 0 to 100 cm"
  • Click "View Rating"
  • Your color themeatic map will come up which rates your soil map units. The vertical "Legend" tab, on the left of your photo, gives you the legend that the colors represent.
  • Add this to your Shopping Cart
  • The "Ecological Site Assessment" tab is not operational at this time.

Tabular Soil Reports
  • The "Soil Reports" tab gives you much of this same information, but in a table format, not a colored thematic map. You have to scroll down to read the "Soil Report" tables
  • Click on the "Soil Reports" tab.
  • Click on "Land Classifications"
  • Click on "Land Capability Classifications"
  • Click "View Soil Report", and scroll down
  • Add to Shopping Cart

Printing Custom Soil Resource Report
  • The "Shopping Cart Tab" prepares a Custom Soil Resource Report, with the map unit descriptions within your AOI, and whatever reports you have added to your shopping cart
  • On the top right, click on the "Shopping Cart (Free)" tab
  • Click the box "Check Out"
  • Click Delivery Method "Get Now", and click OK.
  • Your Custom Soil Resource Report will come up as a PDF that you can print, save, or email



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