For some, it was the novelty of carrying the “Google Car” camera on their backs and taking ownership of that the telltale smudge beneath their 360 degree Streetview photo, for others it was a test of endurance, but for all involved, it was a labour showing passion for their communities and the Trail that connects them all.
And it has to be passion. Each volunteer and staff member from the 8 Great Lakes Waterfront Trail communities between Cornwall and Hamilton, and from the Great Waterway that made a “Trek” last summer carried the bulky 42 lb Google Trekker camera on their backs for kilometres at a time. It’s a far cry from ultralite hiking and might be seen as a burden by some, but the whole exercise was filled with excitement (including local media coverage). At its core, and for all its weight, the Google Trekker is a 360 degree camera that collects images for Google to share in their Streetview program, via Google Maps or the Streetview app. Every few steps the camera takes an image, full-circle. Each step entwines personal stories with the Trail and the communities it connects, and makes it possible to share those steps with others.
There are a lot of steps in 100km. And a lot of stories.
The end result is that now roughly 100km of the off-road sections of the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail between Cornwall and Hamilton can now be viewed in Google Maps via Streetview. If you’re not sure what that little peg man is in the bottom left-hand corner of your Google Maps screen, drag him out of the corner and a drop him on one of the blue lines that appear on the map, and you’ll know what I mean.
A Special thanks to our 2017 Great Lakes Waterfront Trail Google Trekkers:
“IronMan” Joe Gati
Click on the image below for a Streetview image of the Trail in Cornwall, ON