Anyone who has visited the Grand Canyon is sure to be familiar with its breathtaking beauty, its numerous trekking routes, and the terrifying stories about how hikers can potentially get lost. Never fear though – because Google Maps now features detailed routes and photos that let you explore the Grand Canyon from the comfort of your desk! The company used a modified version of their Google Map camera (known as the Trekker) to chart and take panoramic photos of one of the world’s most spectacular national monuments.

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Google’s new images cover more than 75 miles of trails and surrounding roads, making the map one of the most comprehensive, accurate and easy-to-use visualizations of the Grand Canyon ever created. Users will be able to “take a walk down the narrow trails and exposed paths of the Grand Canyon: hike down the famous Bright Angel Trail, gaze out at the mighty Colorado River, and explore scenic overlooks in full 360-degrees.”

Google’s blog adds that “You’ll be happy you’re virtually hiking once you get to the steep inclines of the South Kaibab Trail. And rather than drive a couple hours to see the nearby Meteor Crater, a click of your mouse or tap of your finger will transport you to the rim of this otherworldly site”.

The Trekker is an Android-operated 40-pound backpack that contains a 15-lens camera system. As the Google team walked over the rocky terrain on foot, the camera system was able to take more than 9,500 panoramas shots. Watch the below video to see how it was done!

+ Official Google Blog

Via Google Lat-Long Blog

Images: Google and Timon Singh