A cubic yard is the volume which occupies a space that measures one yard long, one yard wide and one yard high. One cubic yard of material is enough to half-fill the bed of an average pickup truck.
Materials commonly measured and sold in cubic yards include sand, gravel, concrete, soil and mulch. One cubic yard of sand or gravel weighs approximately 2,800 pounds (1.4 tons). A cubic yard is equal to 27 cubic feet, or 46,656 cubic inches. It takes 202 gallons of water to equal one cubic yard, which is enough liquid to fill over 10 10-gallon aquariums.