Google Street View Takes You To Canada’s Arctic Circle… Without Getting Frostbite

December 3, 2012 0

Mountain View, California — Want to enjoy a winter wonderland this holiday season, but scared to step outside into the chilly temperatures? Do some armchair vacationing in the Canadian Arctic, one of the newest locations for Google’s Street View. Google on Wednesday unfurled a Street View map of one of Canada’s Arctic communities, making it easier for enthusiastic skiers to prepare for the world’s greatest ski slopes before they ever leave home through a new collection of images, giving the world a detailed — and digital — glimpse at part of the country’s vast and remote North, which users can view online.

In August, the search giant embarked on to explore the far north to complete its quest of mapping the frigid corners of the Earth. Since then, the company has now expanded Street View imagery there, presenting panoramic images of Cambridge Bay, with the help of local community volunteers and non-profit group Nunavut Tunngavik, which embellished the coverage of a very remote and virtually unknown area.

A fishing bridge in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut is pictured in this undated Google Street View Image. (Photo Courtesy Google)

As depicted on the official Google blog, the Street View team captured some amazing shots of the Canadian Arctic, and even compiled some shots of ski resorts along the way, through which viewers can get an idea of what the cold north American region is like. View historical elements of Inuit culture, Arctic souvenirs in the Arctic Closet and even watch the locals fish in Cambridge Bay.

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Like most Street View projects, the imagery captured by Google is pretty amazing. The new images include more than 90 ski and snow resorts around the world, adding to dozens that were already available using Street View, Ulf Spitzer, the program manager for Google Street View, wrote in a Nov. 28 post on the Google Official Blog. It is also an opportunity to get an on-the-ground glimpse at a place many people will never visit in their life.

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“Whether you are seeking to discover a [ski run] you have never ventured before, or just want to take in some winter wonderland scenery, we have added Street View imagery for resorts across Europe (including runs in Switzerland, Austria, Norway, Sweden, Italy and Spain), Canada (including runs in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario) and the U.S. (including runs in Utah and Michigan),” wrote Spitzer. “For example, take a look at Solden, a popular ski resort in the Otztal valley of Tyrol, Austria. It is not just tourists who flock there every year, but fans of professional skiing–Solden regularly hosts the giant slalom competition as part of the Alpine World Cup in late October.”

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It is the furthermost north in Canada Google’s Street View team had ever traveled, and equipped with Street View tricycles and cameras, team members and residents captured 360-degree images of the region’s astounding sights and locations to create one of the most detailed maps of the area that has ever existed, the company stated in a blog post.

“This is a place with a vast amount of local knowledge and a rich history,” said Nunavut Tunngavik’s Christopher Kalluk. “By putting these tools in the hands of our people, we will tell Nunavut’s story to the world.” Various cultural centers and historically important places are listed for more information.

Now take delight in your armchair viewing, stroll through Omingmak Street, Spitzer recommended, where a locals fish for Arctic Char at an area bridge and the Old Stone Church stands. Visit the Ice Hockey and Curling Arena, or maybe take a trip to the Kitikmeot Heritage Society and Arctic Coast Visitors Center.

Amazingly, for those actually planning a winter vacation can preview the slopes of more than 90 global ski resorts. For a more personal look at the mapping project, watch Google’s video below.

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