“El Capitan is something every climber aspires to climb one day,” says Peter Mortimer, a Sender Films’ co-director of Valley Uprising, a 2014 documentary about the climbing history in Yosemite National Park in California. “But relatively speaking, very few actually do it.”
Now it’s possible to experience what it’s like to climb the famous and historic Nose route of El Capitan, a 3,000-foot tall monolith in Yosemite Valley, without even knowing how to tie into a rope. Google, working with a team of photographers and professional climbers last January, has digitally mapped the entire rock climb using the same spherical 360-degree panoramic photography found in the Street View of its maps.
“This is some pretty incredible technology,” says Corey Rich, who was one of the photographers on the wall for the project (see more of his Yosemite photos). “I’m sure future climbers will be able to rely on these interactive maps during their own climbs.”
Check out the full story on National Geographic here.