How much distance does a degree, minute and second cover on your maps?

The distances vary. A degree, minute or second of latitude remains fairly constant from the equator to the poles; however a degree, minute, or second of longitude can vary greatly as one approaches the poles (because of the convergence of the meridians). At 38 degrees North latitude, one degree of latitude equals approximately 364,000 ft (69 miles), one minute equals 6068 ft (1.15 miles), one-second equals 101 ft; one-degree of longitude equals 288,200 ft (54.6 miles), one minute equals 4800 ft (0.91 mile), and one second equals 80 ft.

longitude convergence

Illustration showing longitude convergence. Latitude distances remain constant.