Connect to Elevation Layers in Google Earth

The elevation data is served as a map service using Esri's ArcGIS Server. Click here to learn more about how it is done. The map services can be connected to in a variety of ways.

Connect Using Google Earth

Google EarthGoogle Earth is a virtual globe, map and geographical information program. Google Earth uses KML files, or KMZ (zipped kml) for sharing geographic data. There are now two flavors of Google Earth. The newest one now runs in the internet browser Chrome and no longer requires download and installation. The other is the desktop version that does require a download. We recommend using the downloaded version to view CT ECO services.


Google Earth Desktop


  • If you don't have Google Earth, download it.
  • To add the elevation layers to Google Earth, click on a kmz link below and choose to open in Google Earth.

Alternatively, choose Save File.

  • Save File saves the kmz file to your computer. Take note where the file is saved on your computer (downloads folder, desktop, etc. - every computer is set up differently).
  • To open the elevation layer, EITHER
  • double-click on the downloaded file to launch Google Earth and display the layer OR
  • Open Google Earth. On the File menu, choose Open and locate the KMZ file(s) on your computer. Click Open.


KMZ Files

The following KMZ files allow the elevation layers to open in Google Earth. Note that each REST endpoint contains the direct link also. Locate the Google Earth link on each REST page.

Aspect Aspect.kmz Aspect REST
Elevation Elevation.kmz Elevation REST
Hillshade Hillshade.kmz Hillshade REST
Shaded Relief ShadedRelief.kmz Shaded Relief REST
Shaded Relief without Dynamic Range Adjustment* REST
Slope Slope.kmz Slope REST


* Dynamic Range Adjustment is a contrast stretch that only stretches the pixel values with the display extent, as opposed to all pixels in the dataset. It is helpful to see contrast in a smaller area but, because of its dynamic nature, hinders visual comparison of different areas or large areas.