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Ground-Based Surveys

A ground-based survey involves the use of crews and equipment traveling over the ground and collecting data as they proceed along. For surveys that involve a station-spacing of 100 meters or less, the mode of travel is usually walking. As the spacing increase, a 4-wheel ATV, snowmobile, or truck may be required to reduce the travel time per station.

Surveys may be designed as grids, widely spaced lines, randomly placed stations, or may follow other crews who are collecting seismic data, magnetics, bulk sampling, etc.

Key factors that influence the operation and logistics are:

  • survey design - travel time greatly increases if lines are scattered all over the property
  • access - if roads and trails are available within the project area
  • time of year - avoid the rainy season, break-up, freeze-up, etc.
  • remote locations mean setting up camps and support lines
  • land access permits may be required
  • forests and undergrowth may require survey line to be cut
  • assess methods best suited to obtain accurate elevation data. It may not be possible to use GPS methods in all circumstances.
  • and many more

All types of ecosystems demand careful consideration when planning a ground survey. To give you a taste of what several climates can throw at you, project photographs have been selected and organized by environment type:


Arid and Semi-arid Ecosystems

Forest Ecosystems

Mountain Ecosystems

Marine Ecosystems


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Last Modified on Mon 10-Oct-2016

Geo Tagged for Geographic Discovery