Team Completes Aerial Survey of 600,000 Acres of Timberland and Other Surface Interests

August 19, 2020

HOUSTON – Western Pocahontas Properties, L.P. (WPP), a private limited partnership based in Houston, TX, recently worked with Era Helicopters (now known as Bristow Group Inc. after they combined with Era Helicopters on June 11, 2020), a global leader in vertical flight solutions with its headquarters in Houston, TX, to complete an aerial survey of approximately 600,000 acres of timberland and other surface interests in Kentucky, West Virginia and Maryland.

Given the expansive geographic scope of the forests and other surface interests included in the survey, the rugged terrain associated with the surrounding landscapes and the relatively tight timeframe to complete the work, the team determined that a helicopter could be a viable option for this particular project. The team reached out to Bristow based on previous experience as well as their reputation for safe and efficient operations.

After reviewing the objectives of the project as well as the team’s preference for a multi-engine aircraft, the company recommended the EC-135 for the job. Bristow repositioned one of its EC-135 helicopters from its base in Houma, LA to an airport in West Virginia. They worked with the team to complete multiple flights as part of the survey over a period of several days. A key aspect of this project was the ability to integrate data from the team’s geographical information system (GIS) into the EC-135 navigation and auto – pilot systems. The aerial survey was accompanied by ground sampling in certain areas that provided more granular data of the forest resources. This more detailed forest data coupled with the broader overview obtained through the aerial survey provided the team with a comprehensive overview of the forest resource and other surface interests in a timely manner.

WPP subsequently completed the purchase of timber harvest rights on 147,000 acres included in this aerial survey. These timber harvest rights will be combined with WPP’s other timber, mineral and surface interests in the region and managed on a sustainable basis.