Land Use Academy

GPS Applications for Monitoring Land Trust Holdings

Materials on this page have been prepared to help students who have taken CLEAR's course titled Using GPS for Monitoring and Mapping Land Trust Holdings. This course was developed collaboratively with the Connecticut Land Conservation Council in the fall of 2012. Be sure to check out information about our follow up training: Advanced Topics for Land Trusts: Monitoring and Mapping Holdings.

Using a GPS and map to navigate

We have included links below to websites where course participants can download or access free software and programs used in the course. Additionally, we have provided links to a number of websites that provide access to Connecticut's public domain maps and GIS data.

Class Software and Online Web Resources


DNRGPS - A free program used to transfer data between a Garmin GPS receiver and a GIS mapping program. It is easy to use and GPS data can be saved in various formats including text, KML, GPX, shapefile formats. PC only.

Garmin Basecamp - A free program from Garmin that allows you to download your GPS data in GPX format. Compatible with both Macs and PCs.

ArcGIS Online - A free internet based mapping program that allows a user to display their GPS data over basemaps and high resolution aerial images. Local GIS data can also be added as well as online map services.

ArcGIS Online HELP Resources - Check out the ArcGIS Online user's guide, blog and forum for guidance on using this free online mapping tool.

Online Photo Sharing Website -Field photos can be uploaded to various free online photo storage websites. This course utilizes Shutterfly. Similar sites include: Google Picasa Web Albums, Flickr, Photobucket and Snapfish.

CT Geospatial Data - Online Mapping Resources

CT Environmental Conditions Online (CTECO) - Provides current and critical natural resource information and maps for Connecticut. Includes static PDF maps, interactive web maps, GIS online map services and access to data download. Created by the CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (CT DEEP) and UConn CLEAR.

UConn's Map and Geographic Information Center (MAGIC) - A collection of maps, atlases, historic aerial photographs and digital GIS data. MAGIC also provides assistance with GIS questions, web mapping services and online interactive maps.

CLEAR's Connecticut's Changing Landscape Website -Provides basic land cover information about changes to developed, forest and agricultural lands during the period from 1985 to 2006 (2010 coming soon!). Five dates of land cover are available for download: 1985, 1990, 1995, 2002 and 2006. The data and the site were created and maintained by UConn CLEAR.

GPS Maps Gallery

Check it out maps created by participants in the fall 2012 course.



Course Data Folder

If you have completed this course and would like to repeat the exercises on your own, you can download a zip file of the course folder here. Save the file to your computer and unzip it a location on your hard drive.


Take the Course Survey

If you have completed this course, we would love to hear your feedback! - Please click HERE to access the online survey. Thanks!


Contact Information

UConn CLEAR - The Center for Land use Education and Research at the University of Connecticut

CT CLCC - The Connecticut Land Conservation Council

Course Instructors and Partners:
Cary Chadwick, Geospatial Educator, UConn CLEAR:

Emily Wilson, Geospatial Educator, UConn CLEAR:

Chester Arnold, Director, UConn CLEAR:

Amy Paterson, Executive Director, CLCC:

Hunter Brawley, Brawley Consulting Group and CLCC Steering Committee Member:

Connie Manes, Manes Consulting, LLC & CLCC Steering Committee Member: