After three previous (failed) winter attempts on Half Dome via the Cable Route, John suggested we try via Snake Dike. Good choice. Very little snow that weekend, more like late spring with gorgeous weather, and we had the route and the entire mountain to ourselves. Going down the cables was the highlight - we walked down the cables until they were too buried in ice to dig out, then rappelled 100ft wearing crampons, and walked down the final 100ft to the shoulder. A summer climb / winter descent. Awesome... Trip Report
I climbed this with my good friends, Ed and Mike, on day 4 of a 5 day Tuolumne Meadows to Yosemite Valley backpacking trip. It was a great way to blow off steam before I started studying for Bar Exam. Fun climb, but I’m surprised more people haven’t been killed on the cables.
The morning portion of a Half Dome/Clouds Rest dayhike, and my first time hiking up Half Dome. Reached the summit in a bit under three hours from Happy Isles.
This place seemed like a zoo even at ten in the morning; I can't imagine what it must be like later in the day.
Easy Hike, Camped in Little Yosemite Valley. Recommend it to anyone who enjoys backpacking. Later that summer, I climbed the Face. That was pretty easy too. Great Big Wall Climb with spectacular views. Definitely recommend it as long as it isn't too windy, like when I climbed. The ropes were hard to manage.
My first time up Half Dome. ~10 hours round trip due to a bum knee. Perfect day, 65 degrees and sunny :)
3 day backpacking trip from the Valley with a 1 day day hike up from Little Yosemite Valley. Despite leaving at 8am from LIttle Yosemite Valley we were not the first ones to the top. Great views till about noon, then the smoke from the fires came in. This was the last weekend before the cables came down for the season.
Miguel Carmona and I climbed the Snake Dike in 8 hours and 15 minutes RT from our tent at the Upper Pines Camp Ground in 1987. This was a challenge presented to us by our friend and climbing buddy Rich Henke,who previous day climbed in in 8 hours and 40 minutes. We had to beat his time. I remember totally freaking out the turists coming up the cables, when we strolled down in our rock shoes outside the cables. There were people clutching the cables for a dear life, screaming that we will get ourselfs killed; it was such fun.
Drove up that morning and got started at 10 AM. It was raining on and off for the first half of the hike and we heard reports from people coming down saying that it was snowing on top and to add to it, we could hear thunder once in a while. All these people who got there early were turned back by the ranger. We arrived at the cables at 5PM and the only clouds were below us. No snow and very few people by that time. The top was great and sitting over the edge was exciting. Made the last 4 miles of the descent in the dark and were done by 8PM.
Climbing Half Dome was the culmination of our 3 day backpacking trip from Tuluomne Meadows to Yosemite Valley through Cathedral Lake and Sunrise. We spent previous night in the beautiful campground on the intersection of John Muir Trail and Clouds Rest, 2.5 miles away from Half Dome (those of you who chose to stay in a well-developed Little Yosemite Valley - you missed out big time!). Woke up at 5:30am and was underway at 7am. Day turned out to be absolutely gorgeous. We left our backpacks in the bushes next to the John Muir Trail, and hiked with daybacks to the top. Ascend was easy and enjoyable. We've made it to the top at 9am. Ran into two guys who were drinking large cans of Fosters and playing frisbee on the summit plato - ohh they've made us jealous with their beer. We got to our backpacks by 11am and witnessed major traffic on the John Muir trail on the way to the top. If you want to enjoy the ascend - make it early (before 9-10am).
This was my 34th or 35th time on top of Half Dome, mostly by the cables route, but I have climbed Snake Dike 6 times, it is a fun route. On this particular trip, the cables were down, and there were few tourists enroute. ScottyS and I had the place to ourselves. Round trip time of approximately 5.5 hours, a little slow due to snow and ice encountered on the trail. The Regular Route on the Northwest Face is high on my list, but I haven't found anyone who wants to go yet. I will tick this route sometime soon.
I left early in the morning and hiked in from Lower Pines campground. Six or so miles and a little bushwhacking later, we were at the starting point. There was only one uneasy portion under the flake on the first pitch, where we had a little rope trouble. Other than that, the climb was very straight forward...climbing the "dinosaurs back". The dike is interesting, with a spine-like appearance. After reaching the top, we hiked out of there (8.5 miles) via the JMT. I slept so good that night!
Hiked trail with my wife Paula, very sweet day...
My first klettersteig. Things look a lot easier nowadays (hence more crowded) with the single cable replaced by a staircase.
Many people on the cable route. Went outside the cables because I felt safer there, and because there was no traffic outside the cables. Spent an hour at the summit together with my friends Chuck and Sue.
We tried the North Face but run out of food and water while waiting for other parties climbing the North face route. So we aborted the attempt . Instead of this we hiked up the cable route to the summit and enjoyed this realy grat place.
Four of us originally set out to climb Snake's Dike, but for too many reasons to list here, we didn't even leave Camp 4 until 11:30am. Given that it was winter, and the sun was due to set at 5ish, I elected to break off from the group and trot up the back side/Cable Route.
I hit the trail at 12:20pm and enjoyed the views during the walk up. I got to the cables at 4:00pm and as expected, they were down. I grabbed onto one of the cables and climbed up bat-man style topping out around 4:30pm.
I enjoyed the view at the top, but I liked the view looking over the edge even more. I had a surprisingly fast descent (less than 3 minutes back to the valley floor) and a big fat smile from an absolutely spledid day. ;-)
First dayhike of the year, saw zero tourists on the summit. Stuck my head out over the edge --- I'll leave the diving board to others...
A fantastic dayhike...too bad it is so popular.
Fun climb with Josh on a very crowded summer weekend. This is probably my third favorite technical climb to date after Olive Oil and Johnny Vegas. This is, however, an easy climb and I agree with Ryle in thinking that the hardest move is the class 4 mantle on the approach. We even did a 10m simul-climb ... by accident. If we only used quickdraws on bolts, does this mean this qualifies as a multi-pitch sport climb? The views on top are astounding and for the first time I thought Yosemite could rival Zion in terms of sheer beauty. Read more about our crowded climb in my SP Trip Report.
John and I climbed Snake Dike with 20 other people on the route. Don't do this climb on a summer weekend! There were 100+ people on top of Half Dome and more than 200 in a traffic jam on the cables. No, these numbers are not exaggerations. I counted them.