Monday, August 03, 2015

Google Street View Takes Us to the Dawn Wall

In January of this year, Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson captured the attention of the world with their free climb of the massive and iconic Dawn Wall in Yosemite National Park. We all watched with baited breath as the two men struggled for days on a rock face that is incredibly smooth, difficult, and terrifying. And when they eventually finished the herculean task that they had set before themselves, we all cheered their efforts mightily.

Most of us will never get the chance to attempt the climb it for ourselves, as the Dawn Wall is definitely not for the faint of heart or those lacking in world class climbing skills. But, thanks to the magic of Google Street View, we can all experience what it was like for Tommy and Kevin.

Using high tech cameras that capture images in 360ยบ at the same time, Street View takes us to pitch 15 on the Dawn Wall, which many argue is the toughest section of the entire climb. Through this technology, you'll gain even more respect for what Caldwell and Jorgeson were able to accomplish just by getting an up close and personal look at their obstacle without ever having to leave the comfort and safety of your own home.

The most striking thing about these Street View images for me are just how few hand and footholds there are for the climbers to use on their way up this pitch. But on top of that, being able to pan the camera around and see how far below the Yosemite Valley actually is has to be incredibly nerve wracking as well. This is a good way to put the climb into perspective for non-rock climbers for sure.

Check it out for yourself by clicking here.

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