Extracting 3D tree models based on terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) point clouds is a challenging task as trees are complex objects. Current TLS devices acquire high-density data that allow a detailed reconstruction of the tree topology. However, in dense forests a fully automatic reconstruction of trees is often limited by occlusion, wind influences and co-registration issues. In this paper, a semi-automatic method for extracting branching and stem structure based on equirectangular projections (range and intensity maps) is presented. The digitization of branches and stems is based on 2D maps, which enables simple navigation and raster processing. The modeling is performed for each viewpoint individually instead of using a registered point cloud. Previously reconstructed 2D-skeletons are transformed between the maps. Therefore, wind influences, orientation imperfections of scans and data gaps can be overcome. The method is applied to a TLS dataset acquired in a forest in Germany. In total 34 scans were carried out within a managed forest to measure approximately 90 spruce trees with minimal occlusions. The results demonstrate the feasibility of the presented approach to extract tree models with a high completeness and correctness and provide an excellent input for further modeling applications.