A sneak peek at wild lands may be just what you need to jumpstart your summer vacation plans.
Google Maps has recently released the 9,500 images of the breathtaking Grand Canyon National Park that were gathered last summer by the Trekker - a camera-equipped backpack that captures 360-degree images.
This means you can now take virtual tours of the Grand Canyon's Meteor Crater, Bright Angel Trail, South Kaibab Trail, Phantom Ranch, and intersections with the Colorado River in Google's Street View.
Other virtual adventures and webcams:
If you are looking for more wild adventures online, you may also want to check out these pages:
- More Google StreetView trails in California's National Parks, including Yosemite, Sequoia, Kings Canyon, Death Valley, Joshua Tree and Redwood
- Webcams in National Parks, including Glacier, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Mount Rainier, Rocky Mountain, Yosemite and Zion
- Online slideshows of National Parks, including Denali, Biscayne, Olympic, Virgin Islands, Cape Hatteras National Seashore, and many more
- Virtual tours of monuments, parks, historic sites, etc.
- Collection items from parks throughout the National Parks Service, available through their recently re-launched website
While these online journeys may pale in comparison to the real thing, research has shown that even this sort of exposure to nature is better than nothing.
As you tour from your desk, you are also sowing inspiration for outdoor recreation yet to come.