Maps & GIS Data

Use this page to reference GIS and map data available for the Central Sierra Field Research Stations (CSFRS). Listed data that is not linked can be obtained from the Station.

Obnoxiously, data links are constantly changing. If one of our links is dead and you find a data source to replace it, please let us know!

Sagehen’s data is the result of a significant investment of resources over many decades. The station makes its data available free of charge with the provision that users will help us stay in business by:

“Fair-Use” Policy for Sagehen data:

Kindly inform the appropriate Principal Investigators of how you are using site data and of any publication plans. If the Principal Investigators feel that they should be acknowledged or offered participation as authors, they will let you know and we assume that an agreement on such matters will be reached prior to publishing and/or use of the data for publication. If your work directly competes with the Principal Investigator’s analysis they may ask that they have the opportunity to submit a manuscript before you submit the one that uses their data. In addition, when publishing, please acknowledge the agency(s) that supported the research.

Geodatabase and shapefiles for the Central Sierra Field Research Stations


Sagehen Basin Digital Orthoquads (DOQ’s) and other aerial imagery

We recommend starting your quest for remote sensing imagery on the USGS Earth Explorer. You can use their map to create a bounding box for your area of interest, or use these coordinates to search for the data sets shown in the image at left:

area namearea corners
The larger Sagehen & Independence basin areas.39 19 09 N 120 05 01 W
39 32 02 N 120 27 27 W
North Fork of the American River Conservation & Research Agreement area.39 05 41 N 120 11 36 W
39 21 00 N 120 31 55 W

You can also use NDOP for aerial orthophotos, or download imagery, veg layers and quads at California Geoportal.


2004 LiDAR remote sensing resource shared with the Sagehen research community by the UC Berkeley Center for Forestry. Please abide by Sagehen’s Fair Use policy. Data reprocessing done by the National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping (NCALM). Data acquisition by Sanborn.

Principle Investigators: John Battles, Scott Stephens

2005 LiDAR data is available for Sagehen basin, Independence basin, and North Fork of the American River.

2013 & 2104 LiDAR scans of the Sagehen basin and North Fork American River

North Fork of the American River

LiDAR dataset includes Onion Creek Experimental Forest, Chickering Reserve, North Fork Association Lands & surrounding National Forest. Dataset is now available on the NCALM data distribution center.

It includes the filtered and unfiltered ArcGIS DEMs, and the lidar point cloud (LAS) all split in 2×2 tiles.

Digital Elevation Models (D.E.M.s)

Use USGS’ The National Map (TNM), National Elevation Dataset (NED), or 3D Elevation Program. (3DEP). These are the quads you need:

Vegetation data

  • Weislander Vegetation Surveys: the Wieslander Vegetation Type Map (VTM) collection is a dataset compiled in the 1920s and 30s, consisting of photos, species inventories, plot maps, and vegetation maps covering most of California.

Geologic Map of the northern Lake Tahoe-Donner Pass Region, northern Sierra Nevada, California

Principle Investigator: Art Sylvester