The idea for the high-resolution geospatial data Philmont Project grew from Northrop Grumman's desire to collect, process, and exploit data from a single area that would showcase the company's full range of end-to-end geospatial capabilities. The donated data was processed at the company's geospatial facilities in Gainesville, Florida, and Huntsville, Alabama, using advanced processing capabilities to create orthorectified imagery products, digital elevation models, and lidar-extracted 3D buildings. Company staff in Chantilly, Virginia, took the existing Philmont vector data, georectified it, and performed additional feature extraction to provide a more detailed dataset. In addition, Philmont continues to support the sharing of the geospatial data for use by any scout going into the geospatial intelligence solutions field to use for those projects. The staff will take a portion of the data and clip it out of Northrop Grumman's Master Dataset. This data can be requested anytime; if the Philmont staff feel the data will be used in good faith, they pass it along.
Currently, Philmont is not planning to allow public access to the data. The reasoning behind this is that the ranch tries to control how much information it gives to the scouts prior to getting to the ranch. A significant part of the Philmont experience is for the scouts to find their way across the property with a map and compass, basic skills every scout needs to know. The staff recognizes that more and more people are transitioning to GPS and, though it is a good skill to have, ranch officials feel that the importance of using a map and compass outweighs the need for publishing all the data for people to download and plug into a GPS. As time progresses, the Philmont staff does plan to publish some of the data for public viewing, but at this time, it is still examining the various options to determine the best method for publishing the data without lessening the Philmont experience.