Many modern LIDAR platforms contain an integrated RGB camera for capturing contextual imagery. However, these RGB cameras do not collect a near-infrared (NIR) color channel, omitting information useful for many analytical purposes. This raises the question of whether LIDAR data, collected in the NIR, can be used as a substitute for an actual NIR image in this situation. Generating a LIDAR-based NIR image is potentially useful in situations where another source of NIR, such as satellite imagery, is not available. LIDAR is an active sensing system that operates very differently from a passive system, and thus requires additional processing and calibration to approximate the output of a passive instrument. We examine methods of approximating passive NIR images from LIDAR for real-world datasets, and assess differences with true NIR images.