June 1999 - 4 days w/ Nick Tomlin
July 1999 - 2.5 days w/ Luc Buchet
September 2001 - 14.5 hours w/ Jo Bertalot
September 2001 - ~14 hours w/ Ian Huang
I would recommend the following strategy:
Day 1: Approach via Death Slabs and fix 2 pitches
Day 2: climb to Big Sandy
Day 3: top out and descend via Death Slabs (much quicker).
You don't need as much water on this route because it is in the shade most of the day. I would recommend 2 liters/person/day. The sun hits the route around 2 PM in the summer.
July 1994: Brand new to hiking as a fresh-faced 24-year-old. Really liked it, and made me want to hike Mt. Whitney soon enough.
September 1999: Nice climb with four other guys.
September 16, 2006: Introduced two co-workers to Half Dome. It was good, but there are too many clueless people going up and down those cables. Anyone who is reasonably competent and in shape should be able to make it up in 10-15 minutes. If you insist on going up "between the cables", you are likely to be held up by the hordes and it will take you 45+ minutes. Do yourself a favor if you do this route. Go outside of the two cables, both on the way up and the way down, and your schedule won't be dictated by the anxiety-ridden teenage girl.
Made my first trip to the top of Half Dome in December of 02 with some school friends. Our round trip was about 12 hours and ever since I had wanted to see how fast I could do it without having to wait for the slow pokes.
Running it this time I left HI at 6am, reaching Nevada Falls at 6:45 and had my feet dangling off the beak at 8:05. Hung around on top for 5 minutes then raced back down getting to HI at 9:30. Wound up missing the breakfast buffet by 10 mins, oh well.
Wow, there's so many pple up there, its like some popular beach resort. People playing frisbee, partying...etc... Quite an experience.
Did you know that granite can actually "buzz" with charge during close proximity thunder and lightning storms? Freaky stuff, but it happened on the old Dome.
Good weather, good hiking partner, definitely felt like vacation.
Pretty fun. We took a friend of ours with us who never "climbed" before and she really enjoyed it. Wasps on the top were sooo annoying that we did not spend as much time as we wanted.
Good climb; long approach and an even longer way down.
Awesome day! First time up with the cables down and it was a blast. With so few people around I think I may only go up with the cables down from now on. There was only 1 person on top when I got up there and less than a dozen showed up while I was there. Definitely a more pleasurable experience without the hoards of people around.
Followed the JMT and camped near Sunrise Creek. Next morning summited at sunrise. Nobody around.... a moving experience.
I hiked to the top probably about 4 times. The most enjoyable was the time when we started from Tenaya Lake, went to Clouds Rest, then down on the other side, went cross-country along the quarter domes and then join the trail and went to the top of Half Dome. From there we hiked down to the Valley, picking up lost tourists without flashlights on our way down.
This was much more enjoyable and less crowded than hiking from the Valley.
Hiked from Happy Isles and branched off the Half Dome trail toward Clouds Rest and camped near Sunrise Creek about 1 mile from where we left the main trail. Up at 2:30am, on the summit for breakfast and a beautiful sunrise. Nobody else up top. An amazing experience.
With Ken. Started in morning from mist trail, dumped gear at campsite. Returned to campsite around 5pm.
Did this awesome hike with Brian Jenkins. Have been wanting to do it for quite sometime. Gorgeous weather and views. The cables were fun going up and down--dodging panicked tourists. Mark decided it was quicker to walk just outside of the cables to avoid the crowds.
Did the Snake Dike route for the first time with my friend bearbnz --- very fun. The trip was a bit of an adventure, all told. Read about it in this trip report.
After trail running up to the cables and waiting for some dude to come down and tell me how cramped up his hands were, I grabbed some gloves and pulled myself up. The cables had just been taken down a week earlier making the climb up a little more exciting. I had the summit to myself and took some time to explore the area and soak in the views. I was rather content after hearing stories about traffic jams on the cables.
My wife and I did the one day hike to the top. It was a long day. I had a real bad case of poison oak. We made it, but we didn't have much gas left in us after we finished.
Going up the cables was a blast. I felt like Batman going up a side of a building.
I guess this is the hike to do. Great views. Lots of people.
Climbed the NW Face reg route once, and Snake Dike about 5 times.
After a lovely side trip to Nevada Fall we made it to top for a very late lunch. After an hour we only shared the summit with about 10 other people. One Half Dome veteran planned to enjoy the full moon by himself at the top. D and I jogged down all the relatively flat sections to make the most of the disappearing daylight. I was glad I wasn’t wearing sandals like one of the people we encountered on the trail. I got back to the car tired, happy and pleased to be in such good company.