Yosemite National Park – May 1, 2015 – The Cables Are Going up Early on Half Dome. Ok so this is a result of a really bad winter snow pack, but making lemonade out of lemons, Yosemite National Park is inviting the adventurous to get to Yosemite early this season, see the waterfalls and take on the Half Dome challenge. Permits are required still for these early season hikes but if you have had Half Dome on your bucket list this is a great time to try to secure and early season permit.
Press Release from Yosemite National Park:
Early Season Permits Available at Recreation.gov
The cables to the summit of Half Dome in Yosemite National Park will be in place this Saturday, May 2 and available for hikers. This opening date is three weeks earlier than previously scheduled due to the low snowpack. Day hikers wishing to ascend the cables between May 2 and May 22 must apply for a two-day-in-advance permit though an online lottery at: www.recreation.gov. The lottery will be open for applications from 12:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. (PDT) with lottery results available at 6:00 a.m. the following day. Day use permits for Half Dome are not available in the park. The cables will be inaccessible on Friday, May 1, due to maintenance.
Wilderness permits for overnight users who wish to ascend Half Dome are required as a part of any overnight wilderness trip. For more information regarding backpacking permits in Yosemite, please visit http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/wildpermits.htm.
The regularly scheduled Half Dome season will commence Saturday, May 23. Permits for the regular season were available through a lottery during the month of March. Approximately 50 permits per day will be available on a daily basis through a two-day in advance lottery beginning Thursday, May 21. Visitors wishing to obtain a permit can make reservations at www.recreation.gov or call 877-444-6777.
For more information regarding the lottery and the Half Dome cables, please visit www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/halfdome.htm.
The trail to Half Dome from Yosemite Valley is an extremely strenuous hike covering over 17 miles. Hikers gain 4,800 feet of elevation along the trail that passes highlights such as Vernal Fall and Nevada Fall, before reaching the cables on Half Dome’s steep granite shoulder. Metal cables and wooden planks are placed along the steep shoulder of the dome to assist hikers to the summit.
Visitors are advised to take appropriate precautions when planning a hike of this length and difficulty, and to be prepared for changing weather and trail conditions. Thunder and lightning are common occurrences in the High Sierra during the summer and fall seasons. Hikers should not attempt to summit Half Dome when rain or thunderstorms are forecasted and are advised to use extreme caution when the rocks are wet.
If you are looking for a guided tour of this hike you might consider an outfit like YExplore who takes hundreds of trips annually in Yosemite with groups.
Sierra REC Magazine is dedicated to sharing the events, news and adventure opportunities that exist in The Sierra Mountains. From Lassen Volcanic National Park to the North down through the Central Sierra and the Lake Tahoe Basin through the rugged eastern slopes of the Mono county and Yosemite National park to the southern tips near Sequoia National Park and the PCT trail. We invite you to share stories, trips and photos from your adventures in the Sierra. Please join us on Facebook, Twitter Google + and You-Tube or email us your events and photos at firstname.lastname@example.org #goexplore