Google has partnered with American Rivers to bring imagery of the Colorado River to Street View. Take a look at some of the beautiful scenery:
"For 6 million years, the Colorado River has flowed through the heart of the desert southwest, its waters slowly carving out a canyon so vast it can be seen from space—yet so remote it didn’t appear on early maps of the region," says Chris Williams, Senior Vice President of Conservation for American Rivers, in a guest post on the Google Maps blog. "It wasn’t until 1869, when John Wesley Powell led a small exploration party on a rafting trip, that the natural wonders of the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon came fully into view."
Part of the reason the new imagery exists is to raise awareness about the need for the river's restoration and protection.
"While you admire its grandeur, remember that the river is also at risk," writes Williams. "One of the United States’ most important resources, the Colorado River provides drinking water for 36 million people from Denver to Los Angeles, supports a $26 billion recreation industry, and irrigates nearly 4 million acres of land that grow 15 percent of our nation’s crops. But it’s also one of the most endangered, dammed, diverted and plumbed rivers in the world, thanks to a century of management policies and practices that have promoted the use of Colorado River water at an unsustainable rate. By the time it reaches the Gulf of California in Mexico, the river is barely a trickle—a ghost of its once magnificent self. You can see evidence of the river’s decline In Street View, like the high water mark (showing 1950s driftwood on top of the rock), or sedimentation along the river’s edge down by Lake Mead."
In terms of simply adding to the beautiful imagery that Google has amassed for Street View, this will go nicely with the Grand Canyon imagery it released last year as the result of an early Trekker outing.
Images via Google