Small Woodland Owners' Group

Mapping Woods

Topics that don't easily fit anywhere else!

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby Wendelspanswick » Wed Jun 11, 2014 9:56 pm

Have you looked at MemoryMap? It's a multi platform mapping application, and it's fantastic for editing and printing your own versions of OS maps, the problem with it is it's very pricey. I have an older version that just runs on Windows but I have all the 25,000:1 OS maps for the UK, it's around 28 Gb, came to me via the Jolly Roger if you now what I mean. ;)
Wendelspanswick
 
Posts: 351
Joined: Tue Oct 22, 2013 10:03 am
Location: Somerset

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby Tarrel » Wed Jun 11, 2014 10:00 pm

That's a good point. Memory-map is very useful, and has the advantage that you can upload waypoints to it from a handheld GPS. The only problem I could see is that 1:25,000 might be too small a scale for a small woodland. You'd probably need something like 1:5000 or 1:2500.
Tarrel
 
Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:19 pm

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby Meadowcopse » Wed Jun 11, 2014 11:43 pm

Ordnance Survey can do 1:2500 site centred plans to order. There is also an Android app to convert GPS to OSGB http://www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/about/news/2014/os-launches-os-locate-app.html
Ironic timing, bumped into an estate agent today on a near by plot trying to rationalise a boundary line on an Ordnance Survey detailed site map, Land Registry Documents and some legal notes.
I'm somewhat fortunate in having a traditional orchard planted on a 6 metre square grid layout, although I'm guessing most folk have a significantly higher planting density on their plots...
Meadowcopse
 
Posts: 207
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 7:13 am
Location: Cheshire

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby smojo » Thu Jun 12, 2014 8:05 am

It is very impressive and covers both the mapping and stats we were talking about smojo, I'd like to know exactly how he went about mapping each slice.


Wow that is so cool, would love a map of my wood like that. Gives you something to plan and play with back home. 8 days to complete eh? Yes sometimes the only way to do something properly is the manual slog. How about inviting him to our woods for some practice ;)

GPS - seems a bit like overkill. I looked at handheld machines when I recently got into Geocaching but seems you have to fork out a couple hundred notes for the machine and probably another for the OS maps to go with it. And do they work well under a heavy tree canopy?
smojo
 
Posts: 412
Joined: Fri Feb 07, 2014 7:47 pm

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby SimonFisher » Thu Jun 12, 2014 1:05 pm

smojo wrote:GPS - seems a bit like overkill. I looked at handheld machines when I recently got into Geocaching but seems you have to fork out a couple hundred notes for the machine and probably another for the OS maps to go with it. And do they work well under a heavy tree canopy?

I have a Garmin GPSmap 60CS, purchased in 2004. I think the best accuracy I've seen it report 14 feet, but it's never that good in the woods especially when moving about under tree cover. We tried to use it to map points and trails in our wood when we first bought it, but looking at the recorded data on a computer afterwards showed that it just wan't good enough to provide a position that you could later refer back to with the desired level of accuracy.
SimonFisher
 
Posts: 614
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 5:00 pm

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby wrekin » Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:08 pm

Recent cheap handheld GPS units from Garmin etc can typically achieve 5m accuracy whether under tree cover or not. You can improve this further by measuring the same position on different days and taking the average, as many of the causes of error (eg atmospheric effects) will change from day to day. So the position of a tree stump or of each post on a fence.

Another option is to walk the same route multiple times of different days, record the tracks you make using the units automatic track recording, add them to your map then draw a smooth line through the average of the tracks.

With a paint program that supports layers, it's easy to do this kind of digital tracing to build your own map using GPS co-ordinates, hide the raw tracks you recorded, and scale and shift a Google aerial image to fit using known reference points as another layer. Then you have a nice aerial image of your wood with all the rides and points of interest marked.
http://hutters.uk - Woods, huts, cabins, sheds, forestry
wrekin
 
Posts: 63
Joined: Tue Aug 31, 2010 1:36 pm

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby TerryH » Sat Jun 14, 2014 4:55 pm

smojo wrote:
It is very impressive and covers both the mapping and stats we were talking about smojo, I'd like to know exactly how he went about mapping each slice.


Wow that is so cool, would love a map of my wood like that. Gives you something to plan and play with back home. 8 days to complete eh? Yes sometimes the only way to do something properly is the manual slog. How about inviting him to our woods for some practice ;)


Thank you both. No I probably won't be repeating that exercise ever again. I'd have to try a GPS/electronic alternative..
I scaled up a small outline of our wood (from the land registry map) onto pieces of A4 grid paper which I eventually sellotaped together (8 sheets in all). It's got to be big enough that you can mark each tree of course. Then I worked out how many grid squares were in a metre etc. Decided that 30 meters was a good area to cover in a day (although I managed to cover two such sections most days), and marked those areas on the grid paper.
Went to hobby craft shop and bought two packs of cheap felt tip pens - the kind with many different colours in them. I needed two packs because I managed to lose the odd pen as I walked around (still finding them in the undergrowth to this day LOL). Worked out a colour scheme/key... Pink = Hawthorn, Blue = Oak etc. Small dot = uncoppiced tree, Large dot = coppiced / multi-stem tree etc.
Here's the blank map sections and 'key' all prepared...

Image

Also bought several balls of string. Went to the wood and measured out a 30 metre piece of string. Used that to work out where to run the lateral pieces of string, at chest height, to contain the next area to be mapped - had to be careful of orientation here ; what felt like a straight line west to east actually wasn't so I had to run them a bit diagonally to match up with the map. (Guess a compass would have been handy in hindsight). Then it's a case of walking up and down and marking the dots. Keeping track of which trees you'd done and which you haven't can be a challenge .. tree-blindness can set in ... try and use the natural groupings of trees and land features to keep track of it all. Sometimes I'd misjudge things and end up with too many trees and not really enough space on the grid to fit them in ( it's not necessary to be so accurate though ) but eventually I got a feel for where I was on the grid and this became less a problem. The 30 metre spacing worked well because in the middle of each section I could still just about see the strings through the undergrowth and orientate myself.

I used a large piece of board on which I pegged the current section of map and had a little box velcro'ed to it containing the colour pens...

Image

We have four and half acres and that was enough (I notice that Outeredge's wood is similar size ). I was starting to go a bit bonkers, literally dotty, at the end of it and remember marking the last tree in the far corner and feeling both a sense of achievement and sadness that I had no more trees left! (There is another 50 acres of woodland adjoining ours and I had a fleeting thought to just keep on mapping .. they could bring me out in a straightjacket three months later :lol: )

Once done, it was just a case of tidying it all up at home, scanning the parts into the computer and stitching them together with Gimp , or similar. I ended up with a 124Mb, 3400x9352 bitmap file , which could then be scaled down to more usable sizes...

This is a good time of year to do a survey, when it's easier to identify different species, and for me it was like a little holiday... a week outside in the nice weather, stopping to cook up lunch and cups of tea when I wanted a break, plenty of good music on the MP3 player to keep me going...

I would recommend any new wood owner doing some kind of survey of their wood ( maybe not as "OCD" as mine though! ) because you can learn so much about the different species you have and which parts of your woodland they like the most, and the reasons why...
TerryH
 
Posts: 65
Joined: Sun Jan 05, 2014 3:23 pm
Location: Surrey/West Sussex

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby smojo » Tue Jan 20, 2015 4:54 pm

I'm back on the idea of mapping my wood so I can record the positions of various trees. I've done the perimeter with a good old fashioned tape measure but I'm wondering if a laser tape measure device would work. It would be great if it did, measuring the distance from certain large trees from a reference point would make placing them on the map much easier. But as they work on the laser being reflected back, I have doubts that they would work on rough rounded shapes like trees. I guess you could pin a light reflective surface like a sheet of A4 to the tree to get a reading. Does anyone have any experience of using them outside in this type of situation please? I'm not talking about the expensive range finder ones used to measure heights etc I mean the ones that estate agents and builders use. You can buy a fairly decent one for about £40 so not a fortune. Would be a bit of fun.
smojo
 
Posts: 412
Joined: Fri Feb 07, 2014 7:47 pm

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby Wendelspanswick » Tue Jan 20, 2015 5:50 pm

I have a Leica* one and it is superb, accurate to +-1mm at 100m, it copes fine with irregular shaped targets but the biggest problem is seeing the red laser dot in daylight.
Mine comes with a clip on optical scope that makes it easy to spot the dot but without it anything further than about 20m is difficult to centre on.
Red sunglasses help or using it at night is dead easy. As you say pinning a sheet of white board to the tree would help, taping a cheap air rifle scope to one would help as well.
Just to clarify the laser distance measurer has no problem with distances up to 100m but its knowing that the dot is reflected back off the right target and not some random object next to it.

*Should have been £375 but because there was a screw missing from the battery cover it was in the Screwfix returns pile for £25!
Wendelspanswick
 
Posts: 351
Joined: Tue Oct 22, 2013 10:03 am
Location: Somerset

Re: Mapping Woods

Postby Wendelspanswick » Tue Jan 20, 2015 5:52 pm

Just to add mine has a standard tripod screw mount which you need to use at the extreme end of the range to keep it steady.
Wendelspanswick
 
Posts: 351
Joined: Tue Oct 22, 2013 10:03 am
Location: Somerset

PreviousNext

Return to General

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 5 guests

cron