|Matanuska Glacier and Powell Glacier|
(original size= 24"x36") sorry if it's too small the see here
Then I added all 4 rasters to my ArcMap document and projected the entire data frame as "State Plane 83 Feet Alaska FIPS 3" It projected the data quite nicely. I then went into the toolbox to merge the 4 tiles to make them seamless. This is called mosaicing, it "stiches" the images together making them one. It seemed that I had to make a raster in as the output, so I just went into ArcCatalog, copied one of the raster folders that I extracted and gave it a new name, "Output." Then I went back into my ArcMap document and hit the "Mosaic" tool in the ArcToolbox. I navigated to my newly created raster as my output and added the four rasters to the list of desired tiles. I gave it a name "merge" and hit ok. After a couple minutes it was done mosaicing (praise the programming gods) and the image was complete. The 4 tiles were now one raster. I saved the .mxd (Esri map document) as chugach.mxd as this is the area of interest. I will begin beautification.
The contour lines were a whole separate ballpark. I created them using Spatial Analyst (pretty solid ArcGIS tool). I took the DEM (Digital Elevation Model) and, since I had merged 4 tiles together, had to adjust the range values. Excuse me if I'm being brief/vague with my methodology. This isn't meant to be a tutorial. Then I created the contour lines, I had to convert my values from meters to feet, which was also a series of trial and error, but I finally got it. I am displaying only the contour lines with easily readable values (2000, 3000 etc.) at intervals of 20 feet. I then labeled only the primary contour lines and gave them a more prominent line weight/color. The secondary contour lines are displayed but not labeled, but since they are at every 20 feet, you can deduce what the value of that line actually is.
I also set out to make it so sweet, but unfortunately there wasn't too much available data for what I was looking for. I found some really excellent sources of data that seemed to be good leads until I downloaded them and tried using them. For example, I wasn't able to find a complete point dataset with the peaks and their common names of the area. It would be really cool if someone who is really familiar with the area created a dataset like that. I found some great glacier data that I also used in the map. Anyway, since my resources were limited to internet database searches, I decided to make it look more like a painting than an actual "navigational" map. Enjoy!