The Gmaps “Pedometer” has a relatively new (2006-01-28) feature, server-side permalinks for routes. I saved my “extended” commute route to see how this worked, and it looks pretty good. The server-side permalink takes care of a limitation on TinyURL length, which hasn’t been a problem for me yet.
But the feature which really got my attention today was the elevation display–very cool! For example, check out this route near Markleeville, California. (The elevation profile should show up as a blue graph below the map. If it’s not visible, find the “Elevation:” setting in the control box and select the “large” link.) You can see that this route starts at about 5065′ then climbs steadily to about 5765′ with a relatively steep descent over the last mile. This is great info for planning a route, especially in an area you are unfamiliar with.
NB: other Google map posts on this blog are tagged google+map.