Using Terrain Data FromCD Maps

Some digital map cds allow you to export a gps track and an elevation profile of a path you specify on the map. If you define the path as a zig-zag covering the area you want to model in Rail3D, you can get a useful set of terrain data.

All you have to do is merge the X,Y information in the gps track with the Z from the gradient profile in a spreadsheet, convert it to the Rail3D coordinate system, and paste it into Rail3D.

Voilà — instant terrain, only slightly more work than good old-fashioned contour-tracing…