It's difficult to find flawless applications, either native or cloud-based. Despite their popularity, Google products also have their share of missing features, which everyone is asking for. Google Calendar is no exception: from the launch in 2006 it lacked a way to jump to a specific date in the past or future to revise it's events. I discovered this the hard way, after I added a couple of birthdays some 20 years in the past without making them recurring. I had to click hundreds of times to get to the right month view and edit the events! I was very puzzled by this lack in the web interface, because such options are build-in to most mobile phones, like the one I used for almost three years. Other calendaring applications like Rainlendar have buttons for jumping to the previous/next year, making the navigation much easier.
Things finally started to improve earlier this year, with the introduction of Google Calendar Labs. “Jump to date” sounded really promising, until I realized it only allowed you to go back to 2005! Fortunately this limit was relaxed and now you can go back to 1980 or forward to 2030 using this add-on. Another very useful lab experiment is “Year view”, which doesn't seem to have restrictions regarding the years you can jump to. This way you can reach the desired date with only a couple of clicks, not matter how far away in the past or future it lies. Unfortunately, enabling Calendar Labs creates a sidebar on the right that steals a lot of screen space from the main area where the events are displayed. It would seem more natural to integrate “Year view” as a standard feature next to the month/week/day views.
But there is also another, more direct solution, and I suspect it was around ever since Google Calendar launched. It was mentioned on the help forums by a top contributor, pointing back to an older Google Groups discussion. Simply go to the browser's address bar and append ‘?date=yyyymmdd’ to the usual Google Calendar URL, like this: https://www.google.com/calendar/render?date=20201010 to go to Saturday, 10 Oct 2020. If the URL already uses some parameters, replace ‘?’ with an ‘&’, like in the image below. That Google Group thread also mentions a method to display a certain date range, but I didn't manage to get that one to work. Maybe it was disabled by code changes in Calendar since then.
This URL trick doesn't have the limitations of the “Jump to date” extension and it's a little surprising it hasn't been officially integrated in the web interface. The advanced search options can also display virtually any date you need, but it forces you to enter two dates to search, and then switch to another view to see the events in the calendar style, so it's slower and more complicated to use. It would be nice if someone creates a bookmarklet or an user-script to leverage this method to quickly move around in Google Calendar.