Flood-inundation data are most useful for decision makers when presented in the context of maps of affected communities and (or) areas. But because the data are scarce and rarely cover the full extent of the flooding, interpolation and extrapolation of the information are needed. Many geographic information systems provide various interpolation tools, but these tools often ignore the effects of the topographic and hydraulic features that influence flooding. A barrier mapping method was developed to improve maps of storm tide produced by Hurricane Rita. Maps were developed for the maximum storm tide and at 3-h intervals from midnight (00:00 hours) through noon (12:00 hours) on 24 September 2005. The improved maps depict storm-tide elevations and the extent of flooding. The extent of storm-tide inundation from the improved maximum storm-tide map was compared with the extent of flood inundation from a map prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The boundaries from these two maps generally compared quite well especially along the Calcasieu River. Also a cross-section profile that parallels the Louisiana coast was developed from the maximum storm-tide map and included FEMA high-water marks. ?? 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.