Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The Natural Resources Center at Great Smoky Mountain National Park and the CGR worked together to create the first detailed vegetation map for over 2000 square kilometers of the southern Appalachian Mountains. These maps will be used to support the massive All-Taxa Biodiversity Inventory (ATBI) project by providing accurate and up-to-date base maps and a GIS database.

GRSM Overstory Map

Great Smoky Mountains National Park Overstory Vegetation

Sample Color Infrared Aerial Photograph

Sample Color Infrared Aerial Photograph

Rocky Top - Thunderhead Mountain

Rocky Top - Thunderhead Mountain

Over 1000 large – scale color infrared aerial photos corresponding to an area covering 28 USGS topographic quadrangles were interpreted to develop the Park’s GIS Vegetation Database.

The Final Report provides details about the methods and results of this mapping project.This project integrates advanced techniques in global positioning systems, softcopy photogrammetry and aerotriangulation and includes the production of overstory and understory vegetation maps and the development fire behavior fuel model maps.

This project was featured in an article in the Fall 2003 issue of the UGA Research Reporter.

References and related publications
  • Jordan, Thomas R., 2002. Softcopy Photogrammetric Techniques for Mapping Mountainous Terrain: Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Doctoral Dissertation, The University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, 193 pp.
  • Welch, R., M. Madden and T. Jordan, 2002. Photogrammetric and GIS techniques for the development of vegetation databases of mountainous areas: Great Smoky Mountains National Park, ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 57(1-2): 53-68.
  • Madden, M. and T. Jordan, 2001. Spatiotemporal analysis and visualization in environmental studies, International Archives of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, Vol. 34, Part 4/W5: 71-72.
  • Welch, R., T. Jordan and M. Madden, 2000. GPS surveys, DEMs and scanned aerial photographs for GIS database construction and thematic mapping of Great Smoky Mountains National Park , International Archives of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, Vol. 33, Part B4/3: 1181-1183.
Final Report and Map

GRSM Vegetation Mapping Final Report

GRSM Vegetation Mapping Final Report – Attachments

GRSM Final Overstory Vegetation Map (Full Resolution PDF)