Guidelines for Parcels North of Latitude 60° N

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These guidelines summarize the land description system for parcels north of latitude 60° N. For more detailed information see Section 4 of the Canada Oil and Gas Land Regulations. [Geographic coordinates are referenced to North American Datum 1927 (NAD27).]

Land areas are divided into grids, grids into sections, and sections into units.

Grids are bounded to the east and west by successive meridians of longitude:

  • for lands south of latitude 70° N, the boundaries are spaced every 15' of longitude (e.g., 122° 00' W and 122° 15' W), or
  • for lands north of latitude 70° N, they are spaced every 30' of longitude (e.g., 122° 00' W and 122° 30' W).

To the north and south, the boundaries of grids are defined by straight lines joining the points of intersection of their east and west boundaries with successive parallels of latitude spaced every 10'(e.g., 60° 00' N and 60° 10' N). Every grid area is referred to by the latitude and longitude co-ordinates of its northeast corner (e.g., 60° 10' N, 122° 00'W).

The number of sections into which a grid is divided depends on the latitude where the grid is located.

A section is bounded to the east and west by meridians:

Figure 1: a sample grid with 80 sections

Image showing sample grid with 80 sections
  • for lands between latitudes 70° N and 75° N, the boundaries are spaced at intervals of 1/10 of the distance between the east and west boundaries of the grid area, or
  • for lands between 60° N and 68° N, and between 75° N and 78° N, they are spaced at intervals of 1/8 of this distance, or
  • for lands between 68° N and 70° N, and between 78° N and 85° N, they are spaced at intervals of 1/6 of this distance.

To the north and south, the boundaries of sections are defined by straight lines drawn parallel to the north and south boundaries of the grid and spaced at intervals of 1/10 of the distance between these boundaries.

Thus, grids have 100, 80 or 60 sections (10x10, 8x10, or 6x10) depending on their location.

Figure 2: Units in a section
Image showing the units in a section

The sections are numbered and each is referred to by its number (see the example in Figure 1).

Every section is divided into 16 equal units, each of which is identified by a letter (see Figure 2).

Thumbnail image of oil and gas grid

View the oil and gas reference grid for Canada north of 60° N:
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Large size (11 x 17 in.)   (440 KB)