As We See It

Explore Nevada’s backcountry from your couch with Google Trekker

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A scene from Kershaw-Ryan State Park.

You’ve been meaning to explore Cathedral Gorge State Park’s slot canyons and conquer Sand Mountain and dip your toes into Pyramid Lake, but haven’t been able to assemble the gear or round up a party or—more than likely—resist your sofa’s siren song. That’s now slightly more excusable thanks to TravelNevada, the state’s tourism authority, which teamed with Google to show off 360-degree tours of more than 22 eye-catching locales via Google Trekker, a backpack version of the van-mounted cameras responsible for Google Street View.

Armed with 42-pound, 15-camera packs that snap pictures every two seconds, Sydney Martinez of TravelNevada and friends captured popular and lesser-known off-the-path adventures, from ghost towns to wacky destinations like the International Car Forest of the Last Church to rarities like the Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park, home to the largest number of the prehistoric marine reptile fossils ever found.

“To me, the point of this project was to reveal places that you’d never dream existed in the Silver State,” Martinez writes on TravelNevada.com. “Stunning landscapes were a no-brainer and would successfully rival the perception that Nevada is a barren, desolate place. … We would most certainly be sure to include places like Lake Tahoe and Valley of Fire, but I feel so personally connected to other less-talked about spots that define the spirit of this spectacular state … the unsung heroes that are worth talking about and most certainly worth visiting.” Cases in point: Spencer Hot Springs and Lovelock Cave. Visit them at TravelNevada.com.

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