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Google Trekker- New Hiking Paradigm

Not everyone knows that there are zillions of cars, vans, aircrafts and satellites are crawling around and above the streets of the world clicking away like crazy. These photographs are stitched together with the help of specialized software and presented to us in the form of maps and 3D panoramic views. But when it came to places like the Grand Canyon, even Google could not capture the images simply because no motorized vehicle could reach the inaccessible terrain. And then came Google Trekker.

What is Google Trekker?

Google Trekker

It’s a backpack camera which can be lugged around by a single human being. Actually it’s a 40 lb. backpack which contains fifteen 5-megapixel cameras which take 360 degree pictures of the surrounding. These images are stored on a portable hard disk. The battery lasts one day. With this contraption strapped to your back you can create a panoramic view of your trail which may otherwise be impossible to capture on camera.

What does this mean to trekkers?

This means a lot to people like me who love to go on long long treks which are almost inaccessible. Google has created panoramic views of hundreds of lovely trails around the world – and the list is growing. Now I can sit back and take a virtual tour of the trails I plan to trek. This is an extremely useful tool for trekkers who can now anticipate and visualize difficult stretches. This can make the difference between life and death.

Grand Canyon panoramic view

This is something I would like everyone to experience. It’s also free. Google has sent its staffers around the Grand Canyon, each of them strapped with the Trekker. With the cameras clicking away every 2.5 seconds, there are over 9,500 images of the seventy five mile of Grand Canyon trail.  Google has also recorded other parameters like temperature at various points. When you stitch all this together you get a spellbinding view of the trail. Sometimes I feel that it’s more pleasure watching the panorama virtually than trekking.

Future Plans

Google plans to deploy Trekker around the globe to capture many more places, wildlife sanctuaries, forests, rivers and even   Mount Everest. Of course Trekker can be used to capture images of more mundane places like shopping arcades, malls, clubs and exotic locales.

Privacy issues

It was bound to happen. Many European countries have joined Australia to decry Google Trekker for intrusion into their privacy. I agree and disagree with them. As long as Google avoids bedrooms and like places and sticks to nature trails, I have no problem.

Conclusion

Google trekker is going to change the way trekkers visualize trails. Planning is a big part of any adventure and this great tool can be of immense help. By the way, Trekker is fantastic stuff for armchair explorers.

Author Bio:- Victor  is a geek who also treks for pleasure. Look here for some nice reviews and info for hikers.

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