ATLAS Harvest Manager provides the company with a centralised system for managing all the harvest areas within the estate. It enables the harvest planner to record planned harvest areas years into the future, track the changes in state as the areas are prepared for production, and finally track the cutover as the harvest is carried out. The system is tightly integrated with ATLAS GeoMaster so that each harvest area has ready access to the stands within its extent, making the species, age distribution, and planned harvest dates automatically available, along with the expected product yields. Also key to this is a set of tools for harvest planning which are built into the GIS (ArcGIS) making it easy to create harvest plans and reconfigure them during the planning process. This Harvest Manager module is included in the base GeoMaster service provided by Interpine as part of the Forest Management Cloud Services.

Understanding the “Harvest View” of the Forest.

The harvest view in GeoMaster takes a step away from the normal forest view of Forest>Compartment>Stand, and divides the forest into Blocks>Harvest Areas>Settings. This allows for the common pattern that trees are planted and managed based on stands (often the previous fence boundaries), yet often when it comes to harvesting these stand boundaries no longer fit with the harvesting methodology used to extract the trees. For example a hauler setting might reach across several stands, ground base operations will work to maximum slope boundaries, or a roadline harvest will cross multiple stands.


Figure 1 – Comparing the Forest and Harvest Views within GeoMaster

In figure 2 you can see an example harvest setting which includes multiple underlying forest stands. This solves naming issues when harvesting forest areas, in that they can be given unique names separate from the forest/compartment/stand, which more closely link with harvest types and therefore extraction costs and budgeting. Software like PSLog can reference these codes, and be able to derive respective harvesting and delivery costs.


Figure 2 Harvest view inside GeoMaster (left highlighted harvest setting, with GeoMaster harvest view on the right).

Figure 1 and 2 also shows “Skids”, these can be managed independently of harvest settings since one Skid may be used to service more than one setting in a harvest area, and furthermore the same Skid may be used when harvesting subsequent rotations. Within the Harvest Manager, the Skid is owned by the block. A setting typically has one or two Skids, depending on the harvesting system and terrain. One Skid will be where harvesting machinery operates from (ie a hauler pad), and the same or another Skid is used to stack the extracted stems. Large settings may have several landings, and in the case of Superskids, one Skid may be serviced by several harvest areas.

Harvest Planning Workflow with GeoMaster

The process of preparing a harvest plan using ATLAS Harvest Manager starts many years before the harvest is expected to begin.  A workflow example is shown in Figure 3.


Figure 3 – Workflow of using Harvest Manager

A key component is the Harvest Area Designer (Figure 4). This extra toolbar in ArcGIS simplifies the harvest plan process while making the process of creating harvest plan maps easier. As you visually add roads, skids, settings these are all linked and created and appear in the Harvest View within GeoMaster. Creating a harvest plan map is as simple as selecting “create harvest map” from the toolbar.


Figure 4 – Harvest Area Designer, simplifies annotation of harvest planning maps within ArcGIS, while linking this in the same step back to GeoMaster.

Reporting is also available with several harvesting operational reports, including crew locations, yield reconciliation and a harvest planning template that populates a Microsoft Word document with maps and information from within GeoMaster, meaning you don’t have to duplicate information (Figure 5).


Figure 5 – Reporting Menu in Harvest Manager

Hope this helps explain a little about Harvest Manager.  We also recently added an article about managing cutover progress with Harvest Manager and this can be found here.   We will be adding more articles over time so if you have any queries on functions and features, or want more information about GeoMaster Harvest Manager provided by the cloud services at Interpine feel free to contact us.