On October 20, 2015, the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service updated soil data for 2,706 soil survey areas, including many areas of Minnesota. The spatial data (soil polygons, lines and points) and tabular data (physical and chemical properties and interpretive information) are available free from NRCS's Web Soil Survey (WSS). This site is the most widely-used and authoritative website for accessing soil information used to make important land use decisions. It is an example of data that you can find described on the Commons that is distributed from a site outside of the Commons.

Each soil survey now contains a full complement of national interpretations giving you the ability to analyze interpretations regionally, multi-state or across the United States. From WSS, you can download data, create printable soil survey reports, and create individual soil property/interpretation reports.

To find out when the surveys were updated, go to WSS, click on “START WSS”, click on the “Download Soils Data” tab, then “Soil Survey Area (SSURGO)” to choose Minnesota or another state you are interested in. WSS will display a list of all soil survey areas for that state. All survey areas in Minnesota are complete except for portions of Cook, Lake, Pine and St. Louis counties which are in progress.