Explore Your World in VR

by Makenna Murray
August 22, 2016

Did you know that there are 59 National Parks across the United States? Many people only see a handful of these beautiful places in their lives, while others many never get to visit a National Park.

While there is no replacement for visiting a National Park in person, you can explore some of these parks (and even get to places real visitors can’t go) by using Virtual Reality.

In August, 2016 The National Park Service celebrates is 100th Anniversary, marking a century of safeguarding our special American places and sharing their stories with millions of people around the world.

To help wish Happy Birthday to the National Parks that we love so much, CyArk has released its first Virtual National Park Experience for Mount Rushmore, the iconic monument to four of our nation’s presidents located in South Dakota.

If you are in the Washington DC area, you can get a sneak peak at the Founder’s Day Celebration at Constitution Gardens on the National Mall on Saturday, August 27 from 10am to 6pm.

Now, you can transport yourself to the top of the monument—just like the 400 men who carved the mountain during the 1930s. This is a view that only National Park Service Ranger’s (and CyArk Field Teams) are able to get, and now, we are sharing our behind-the-scenes access with you!

If you are lucky enough to have a HTC Vive Virtual Reality Headset in your home, you will soon be able to get the full experience when it goes live at the end of the year. Sign up to get an announcement here.

For those who don’t have a headset, or if you just can’t wait, you can also try a modified version of the experience using Google Cardboard and Sketchfab’s VR viewer.

It’s easy and fun and lets you move around the sites like never before. Follow along below for instructions.

Don’t have a Cardboard viewer? Check out the instruction on how to print your own!

  1. Open https://sketchfab.com/CyArk in your smartphone browser. 

  1. Click on your favorite model. 

  1. Click the “View in VR” button in the bottom right of the viewer. 

  1. Place your smartphone into your Carboard viewer and fasten it securely. 

  1. Be Transported!