I have been accused of arriving late to the party, so to speak. And this might be a prime example. Recently, I ran across a really cool website that may be “old news” to most RVers. Actually, I didn’t run across it so much as I found it when conducting a search. But before I tell you what I was searching for, let me tell you WHY I was searching.
Admittedly, we are new to blogging. And because of this, we are tending to pour ourselves into reading the blogs of others in the full-time RV community. One of the things that stands out in most of the blogs we have read, is that many of us like to hike in the areas in which we camp for a time. Whether the Tetons, Yellowstone, Arches or the Grand Canyon, most RVers out there full-timing it like to hike.
In our introduction to this community, one of the things we have observed is that pretty much all of the blogs have their own followers who routinely comment on posts made by the blog authors. It really is a “community”, and an interesting aspect is that not all of the members of this “community” are on the road full-time and are essentially still at home, or at least on the road infrequently. This group includes us.
Another thing we have observed in reading blog comments, is that there is a certain percentage of folks who, for one reason or another, are unable to travel. Many blog followers have health issues, the priority of which trumps being on the road. Some have other considerations, whether family related or financial.
So, I got to thinking about these situations, combined with the idea of hiking. Then it hit me…I wonder what I’d find if I searched “virtual hiking”. I have no idea why I picked that term, but what I found was amazing. I’m sure there were other “virtual hiking” links listed in response to my search, but “NATURE VALLEY” jumped off the page, er, monitor.
My familiarity with Nature Valley is as the producer of energy bars and snacks. The company’s target market is outdoor enthusiasts and athletes…and hikers. But, what I found was not anything, at least directly, having to do with their products. What I found was Nature Valley Trail View. What is “Trail View” you might ask. Well, to quote Nature Valley’s website…
“It is the first ever glimpse into America’s National Parks using Street View technology, and to pull it off we hiked, climbed and captured over 400 miles of 360 degree photo-views on trails across the country.”
Want to take one of many hikes in Yellowstone without a shortness of breath while sitting in your living room? No problem. How ’bout hikes in Sequoia or Great Smokies National Parks?
Today, we hiked from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon down the South Kaibab Trail. The trail dropped 4860 feet, and I never broke a sweat. The trail, the sheer size of rock formations and the flora along the way were unbelievable. And the views from below the rim were other-worldly.
Today in the Grand Canyon was fun. Tomorrow we’re gonna hike in Yellowstone. No sun-block needed. And boy are we saving on gas. Woohoo!
Check it out.