Decided to take my first crack at Half Dome in winter. Overall good trail conditions with only short sections that were icy but manageable in trail runners. Trail eventually turned into snow a couple miles from the top but was firm enough to walk on without postholing much. The sub-dome was challenging as the foot tracks to follow went directly up the side without much switchbacking. Microspikes would have made it easier, but again it was manageable in trail runners.
Started the climb up Half Dome cables around 2:30pm using prusiks. Granite was dry and grippy, and easy to traverse around most ice patches. Unfortunately there came a point, maybe 2/3 of the way up, that both cables were buried under a thick sheet of ice and snow. I tried my best to lift and break the cables free, but did not have the leverage or energy to do so. I was not willing to unhook myself to climb over it so I called it a day and headed back down. Ran into 3 guys with climbing gear coming up the sub-dome and told them the conditions. They continued up so maybe their combined efforts knocked that ice loose—I didn't stay to find out. If so, then as far as I could tell that was the only buried patch and it was clear to the top from the other side.
Overall a really fun attempt, and I'm looking forward to doing it again when the ice melts!
Went up the easy way, next time it's Snake Dike!
Wonderful!!! Some slight congestion at the cables on the way down (someone was scared and didn't want to keep going) but otherwise a very smooth trip.
Very few people, at one point ended up being just my wife and me.
Climbed this magnificent peak with 2 of my daughters on a beautiful Yosemite summer day
Day 3 of a 3 day trek. After about 25 miles we woke and headed up Half Dome Trail (without our packs!) Found a very small crowd atop subdome and was surprised to be as nervous as I was. Eventually found the courage and made my way up the cables. Finally summited a peak I had been dreaming of since my 8th grade class had the hike cancelled. After permit worries for a couple years I was lucky enough to secure two permits for this September, made my way up with a buddy and then my fiancé on a later trip. Disappointedly we didn't have our permit checked either time, the ranger wasn't there on this Labor Day at least through noon, and on the later trip we only ran into him below subdome still making his way up around 11:45. To be honest, was a little miffed to see this hard to get permit not even checked. This is not a suggestion to climb without a permit, I am an advocate of following the rules. Just wanted to share my two cents and see if anyone has any thoughts on this.
All said, the view from Clouds Rest blows this out of the water, but the experience was exceptional.
The face next time
Went up on a weekday a few years before the permits came down. Most exhausting, and rewarding, hike I've ever done. Perfect weather. Will never forget the moonscape of the summit, nor looking down from the top of the cables for the first time, and the click, clack, clock of water bottles falling from climbers' packs down the granite below...
First time up. Hot day, went up the normal trail. Great view on top
Snake Dike in November was maybe the most memorable. Up the cables on so many glorious occasions. Never gets old.
First real hike post back surgery. Beautiful hike from start to finish. Looking forward to getting back to the old me.
Got an early start from our campground in the valley. Really enjoyed the cables. Views were smoky. Hot day, drank 3L of water and had to filter on the way down. My shoes were a little too big and my feet were ready to be done!
Perfect conditions. Weather in the 70s, clear skies, raging waterfalls from high snowmelt and relatively few crowds. Half Dome did not disappoint. Went up the John Muir Trail then down the Mist Trail. We got soaked below Vernal Falls. Also saw a bear 25 feet away from the trail below the Sub Dome.
Was in Yosemite for a couple of days with my girlfriend and had one day to myself, so started early. I was going pretty fast, reached the top in 4hrs and ran down in 2hrs. 6 hrs end to end. Was pretty happy with myself.
finally took the time to just go do it. Well worth the trip.
Climbed twice, once in spring and also in September 2008. It was most amazing in spring when the waterfalls are filled with water and mist.
Really not too hard to do with a good pair of "grabby" gloves and mostly worn out hiking boots. Didn't really need prusics although some used them.
It's truly a wonderful climb, the falls are amazing, but I can completely understand why Norman Clyde stayed out of Yosemite Valley. On the other hand, I can also understand why the crowds show up here.
Only about 10 people on top this day.
Waited 3 1/2 hrs. for the trail crew to remove the cables, midday. They were supposedly going to do this yesterday, Oct.11.
With R. Renteria. First at the base, thankfully since many parties followed. Great climb.
Stunning beauty along the Mist Trail up and down. We started early and there were only a few other people on the cables. Full report here.