National Wildfire Coordinating Group

Briefing Map

Product Description

The Briefing Map is displayed in the briefing area and used during operational briefings. It is a simplified, large-format map of the incident area that is used to discuss work assignments and other details. The briefing map can be printed or displayed digitally using a projector. Sometimes this map is referred to as a Briefing Area Map (BAM).

Target Audience

Incident personnel attending the operational briefing.


  • Standard Incident Command System (ICS) symbology.  Symbols should be enlarged as necessary for visibility.
  • Simple fonts and symbols for non-ICS features such as roads at exaggerated sizes, large enough to be read from the back of the briefing area.
  • Simplified base map to enable clear communication.
  • Extent is based on Operations occurring on the fire, the Situation Unit Leader (SITL) will provide guidance. 
  • Printed or projected as large as possible to serve a large crowd and to be visible from a distance.

Standard Elements

All map products produced should include the STANDL-SGD cartographic elements.


  • Incident perimeter, ICS line and point features (e.g., Completed Line, Drop Points, Camps, Incident Command Post). 
  • Division and Branch breaks and labels.
  • Major transportation routes to and from the incident.
  • Other SITL-requested data.


These are examples from actual incidents and may include non-standard elements.

Also note that examples use the standard symbols at the time of their creation and may not reflect the current GeoOps symbology. Map elements, incident features, and composition remain consistent across these visual changes.

  1. 2021 Caldor Incident Fire
  2. 2022 Hermits Peak Fire
  3. 2022 Fish Fire
  4. 2010 Wrangler Fire
  5. 2016 Beaver Creek Fire
  6. 2017 Boundary Fire


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