Finding the Himalayan Neverland has never been so easy now than ever before. Thanks to Google’s latest experimental App that makes exploring the Himalayas super fun for kids and adults alike. With Google’s new android App, exploring the Himalayas will never be boring again. Google has created something that’s as educational as it’s fun.
What is Verne: The Himalayas?
‘Verne: The Himalayas’ is an educational geospatial experience designed by Google. An experimental learning application which transforms the mountain ranges into a virtual playground for kids and adults alike. Google gives a medium to explore the 3D imagery of the Himalayan range in the form of a very friendly, 500-foot tall Yeti.
The new Android app by Google is called Verne: The Himalayas. Feel free to control your Yeti friend ‘Verne’ that can climb mountains, fly around in a jetpack, a hang glider or a balloon and even skate across frozen lakes. Verne can also play traditional Himalayan instruments and make friends with yaks.
How to get Verne: The Himalayas
The Google App is free to download on any Android based Smartphone and Tablet. There is no IOS compatible App listed by Google for now. One can download the App from its Google Play Store link here. The approximate size of the application is 211 MB.
Having fun with Verne The Himalayas
A curious looking forward message on Whatsapp got me all excited about Verne. A mobile App that claims of exploring the contours of the Himalayas using 3D imagery was too hard to resist. I opened its Google Play link in haste. The Page stated:
A 211 MB download was a 10-minutes wait that felt like ages. The App opened without any trouble. Verni loaded a white colored Yeti flying over Earth like a Superman. It dropped outside a citadel with a tall wooden gate with ‘The Himalayas’ tag.
Open Sesame! I blurted out loud as if I was Micheal LeRoi, the main protagonist from ‘Shadow Man’ the Video Game. No mambo Jambo required here. A push of a button on the touch screen of my phone got me inside the Himalayan gateway.
At first look, I noticed the contours were designed like a Disney Animation Film. “Ok, so what is it? A kiddie Game?” I sulked upon knowing this is not going to be a detailed Google Earth rendered App.
I took the middle valley and passed by a checkpoint with a loudspeaker that plays a walkthrough audio guide. These loudspeakers were seen put in all around the walkthrough sections giving important information about the Himalayas.
I could now see Mt. Everest in front of me at a striking distance. The perks of being a 500-feet colossal Yeti that moves like ‘Hulk’ from Marvel Comics. I took a detour and hopped around a few valleys in a matter of seconds. I now found myself standing next to ‘Rongpu Monastery’ checkpoint. By clicking on the button, I got my first 3D picture preview of Rongpu Monastery. The 360-degree panorama visual picture was a treat to watch. It reminded me of the real representation of the views from Rongpu Monastery. Sweet!
Walking the 26 km long Rongbuk Glacier got me to the base of Mount Everest. An Umbrella was kept there for an ariel orientation of the famous ‘Khumbu Valley’. The umbrella took me soaring up and above the mountain ranges. I could pan around to see Everest, Lhotse, Makalu Peaks. Towards the left was the famous Everest Base Camp. I headed straight to the campsite descending via the dangerous Lo Lha Pass.
The EBC Checkpost had a 3D imagery. Looking towards the Khumbu Icefall, I took the famous South Col. route all the way up to the summit camp. From here, the hand glider kept at the summit of Lhotse was more tempting than the Everest. I plunged into the Glider and crash landed at the summit of Makalu. Unbelievable!
At Makalu Summit, I took the Red colored Snow Sled and plummeted all the way down to Shiva Dhara-Barun Valley. Wow! I went up and did it again for few times.
And then I thought, “What about Everest?” With all the childish craziness, I forgot I had the ‘Trophy Peak’ to visit. I retraced the steps back towards the Kangshung face of Mt. Everest. For me, the more technical climb via North Face and Kangshung Face to Everest are the real deal.
In about 5 seconds, I was at the top of Everest. This is ridiculously easy!
I could not help but retrace all the important peaks from here. At a distance, I could see Gokyo Peak. Taking the North Face of Everest I descended down and hopped past Chola Lake and Mt. Taboache to reach Gokyo Ri in record time.
The 3D Panorama from Gokyo Ri was special. This is one of the most underrated vantage points in the Everest region.
I retraced the return route to Namche Bazar as I exited Sagarmatha National Park. I had seen enough of Everest Region. A few Yak and Musk Deer crossed my way. I tried making friends with them in this fictional Expedition I was roleplaying, only to remind myself of the reality. How much longer I can run with this suspension of disbelief!
I looked to reach the other higher grounds of Himalayas. But, alas, the App has its limitation. A veil of mist surrounds the Everest region. Trespassing it will have you thrown out of the Himalayan territory.
My fun time in the Himalayan Fairyland was over. I cannot wait for Google to add Kanchenjunga and Nanda Devi national parks. Maybe the entire Baltoro Glacier and Concordia as well. But for now, I thank Google for coming up with such an interesting App.
All images are mobile screenshots while testing Google – Verne: The Himalayas App.
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