Montana Department of Natural Resources & Conservation (DNRC) manages timber assets on over 700,000 acres of School Trust Lands. GCS developed a solution to allow timber inventory to be accomplished internally through field data devices, GIS and server-based data systems.
GCS developed a custom Esri Collector for ArcGIS application running on Apple iPads for timber cruise designs and data compilation, all integrated with a customized ArcGIS Online web application called NextGen Cruiser.
The management of Montana’s forested trust lands is to maximize long-term revenue while promoting healthy and diverse forests on over 700,000 acres. Revenue from forested trust lands is mainly derived from the sale of forest products. GCS’s custom tools have allowed DNRC to meets its legislative mandate to maintain inventory of forested trust lands and meet harvest volume goals.
NextGen Cruiser relies upon a customized ArcGIS Online web application interface for designing timber cruises, preparing the data for Collector and compiling/reporting results. The field data is collected using ESRI’s Collector application on mobile devices.
After the initial success of NextGen Cruiser, GCS implemented additional geoprocessing tools and web maps/web applications that enhance DNRC’s workflow. Functionality includes; Proposed Harvest Units, Old-Growth Cruise Design & Reporting, Regen Cruise Design & Reporting, Plot Allocation Flexibility, Individual Tree Volume Calculation.
Out of all the GIS/Web applications that we are using today, NextGen Cruiser has been our most reliable and raved about. Since the initial 2015 release, we have contracted with GCS to make incremental enhancements and improvements. This platform has been used on hundreds of DNRC timber cruise projects without ANY issues. We found GCS to be: easy to communicate with, conscientious and mindful of budget and timelines, willing to provide advice when they discovered a better/more efficient way of accomplishing a task, very supportive after the release to fix bugs…
Mark Slaten, Forest Informatics Analyst, Montana DNRC