Regional
3:45 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Carlsbad Cavern To Be One Of The First Caves On Google Maps Street View

 A member of the Google Maps team takes photos just inside the Natural Entrance to Carlsbad Cavern for the Google Maps Street View project. NPS PhotoEdit | Remove

  CARLSBAD –  Carlsbad Cavern, in Carlsbad Caverns National Park, is one of the first caves in the U.S. to be part of a Google Maps Street View special collection. Soon, Google Maps will launch 360-degree photos of the cave on Street View, enabling people to take a virtual tour of Carlsbad Cavern and explore hundreds of points along the Main Corridor and Big Room trails. The images are expected to go live on Google Maps later this year.  

The Google Maps team visited Carlsbad Caverns National Park on June 17, 2013, as part of an effort to photograph national parks across the country. Soon after entering the cave, however, the team realized that this project was going to be unique—and challenging. The challenges of working in a cave included dim lighting and lack of a GPS signal, which is used to pinpoint images on a map. For each spot in the cave where images were collected, the Google Maps team snapped four photos, one in each direction, which will be stitched together to create interactive, panoramic images of the cavern.

Superintendent John Benjamin said of the project, “We are anxious to see the images of the cave and for people to start exploring from home. Hopefully, this will encourage more people to come see what lies underground at Carlsbad Caverns National Park. Photos can pique your interest, but there’s nothing like seeing the real thing.”