Half Dome, Yosemite National Park

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Yosemite National Park

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  • Half Dome
    by Africancrab
  • Half Dome
    by Africancrab
  • Half Dome
    by Africancrab
  • Conspirator's Profile Photo

    Climb the Half-Life-Dome

    by Conspirator Updated Aug 28, 2006

    17 mile round trip. 4500 feet ascent. You may think you can't do it - God knows, that's what I thought.

    You can.

    Despite the Conspirator's seemingly rugged physique and extensive martial arts training, the sad fact is that investment banking has left him badly out of shape.

    The Conspirator's tips for climbing the Half-Life-Dome and only half-dying:

    1. Bring lots of water. 4 liters / quarts should be enough. There only one source of water once you hit the hard bit of the hike - whatever is in your backpack.

    2. Bring enough food - you will be at it all day. Sandwiches worked a treat and would have been even better if Jan hadn't forgotten the knife. Regularly snack on jelly beans, trail mix etc. to keep your sugar level up and replace salt.

    3. Wear a hat and sunscreen. It gets hot on that bare rock in summer.

    4. Start very early. If you twist your ankle at the top, you don't want to be coming down in the dark. And bring a flashlight just in case.

    5. Hiking poles. If you don't have one, get one. They make a huge difference. Mine has a retractable blade built into the base, which came in mighty handy when we were ambushed by a group of Shan-Tsao ninjas near the top. But that's another story.

    6. Walk slowly. Taking the first sections at a leisurely pace will conserve your energy for the real work.

    7. Bring rocket propelled explosives (plus launcher, obviously). The last few hundred yards of ascent involve hauling yourself hand-over-hand up a 45% incline on a steel cable that is affixed to the rock. It's basically a single file experience, unless you are a mountain goat (and I assure you, by the time you have climbed 4400 feet, all traces of mountain-goatness will have left your legs). When we got there a large school group had tried to climb the cable and had stalled for over an hour when someone in the middle freaked out, because they were all tied together. A couple of well placed RPGs would have been just the thing to clear the path ... but we had left the equipment in the van. Planning, people, planning!

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  • Conspirator's Profile Photo

    Half-Life-Dome: Where to start the hike?

    by Conspirator Written Aug 28, 2006

    We seriously considered hiking from Glacier Point rather that the village. The merit of this is that it avoids a fair bit of uphill and gives you some great views (supposedly). However, it is a 30 minute one-way drive to the village, and, as you will end the hike at the village (unless you want to climb an extra couple of thousand feet back up to Glacier Point at the end of a long day), you need to manage some pretty serious two-car logistics to do it this way.

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  • aukahkay's Profile Photo

    Half Dome

    by aukahkay Written Feb 22, 2006

    Half Dome is one of Yosemite's most famous sights. The mountain is 8,842 feet high and its steep granite ridge is a popular and, challenging 17-mile hike. Also called the Half Moon Rock, the Half Dome resembles its namesake. On a full moon evening, the Half Dome exudes a radiant glow in harmony with the moonlight.

    Half Dome
    Related to:
    • Mountain Climbing

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  • atufft's Profile Photo

    Half Dome April 2013

    by atufft Written Apr 7, 2013

    I climbed to the top of Half Dome more than 20 years ago, but recently all my images have been from below. Fortunately, the restoration of the meadows has helped. This year there wasn't much snow, so spring broke early.

    For those not familiar, Half Dome never was a full dome. It was however, cut by glacier action so that it appears this way. Climbing the back of Half Dome, like I did, is something any healthy and strong person can accomplish. Climbing the face of Half Dome is a once in a lifetime world-class act within the rock climbing world.

    Half Dome April 2013 Half Dome in April 2013 Half Dome April 2013
    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Photography

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  • Africancrab's Profile Photo

    Advanced Hiking

    by Africancrab Written May 15, 2013

    The half dome is one of the most popular hikes in Yosemite. At over 400 feet incline, it is a difficult hike. The trail runs 12 miles; 6 miles each way. It is a seven hour hike in all. Since I was with my family and my son is only 15 months, we decided not to subject him to the torture of such a long hike.

    We enjoyed the views from a distance and planned to return when the children are not with us.

    Half Dome from Glacier point
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    • National/State Park

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  • mcpangie's Profile Photo

    Climb Half Dome

    by mcpangie Written Mar 26, 2005

    There are different levels of walking/hiking opportunities within Yosemite. Half Dome is suggested for the fit, and more experienced hiker. From the valley floor, the trail is over 16 miles and will take all day.

    Half Dome from Olmstead Point
    Related to:
    • Hiking and Walking
    • National/State Park
    • Mountain Climbing

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  • tahoesasha's Profile Photo

    Well, yes, it is a climb...

    by tahoesasha Written Nov 23, 2004

    ...but then you can say you SLEPT on Half Dome! I climbed it when I was 10, so you don't have to be Conrad Anker to pull it off. Just read up on what you need - sleeping bag, pad and food - prepare as much as you can for weather(wind, lightning), and LEAVE NO TRACE. Bring a frisbee!

    Related to:
    • Hiking and Walking

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  • mht_in_la's Profile Photo

    Half Dome

    by mht_in_la Written Nov 1, 2003

    The distinct shape of Half Dome makes it an icon and the most photographed subject in Yosemite. Any time of the day you'll see photographers, professional or amateur, trying to find the best angle, sunlight, and cloud/mist to take their best shot. And Half Dome's color changes depending on all the above. One evening when leaving the Valley I noticed the last ray of sunlight happened to shine on its tip, so I quickly snapped this photo.

    Half Dome at sunset
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    • National/State Park
    • Photography

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  • Saks_b's Profile Photo

    Half Dome

    by Saks_b Written Jan 8, 2004

    Half Dome is perhaps the most recognized symbol of Yosemite. Rising over 4,000 feet above the Valley floor, it is one of the most sought-after landmarks in Yosemite. Some people even hike or rock climb to the top! Half Dome can be seen throughout eastern Yosemite Valley and Glacier Point.

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  • spgood301's Profile Photo

    Half Dome

    by spgood301 Written Feb 14, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is Half Dome, one of Yosemite's signature mountains. It looks like Mother Nature took a little off the top!

    Half Dome-Yosemite
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    • Family Travel
    • National/State Park

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  • Robachu1's Profile Photo

    A Well-Deserved Rest

    by Robachu1 Written Aug 14, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    After the 8 mile uphill hike from Happy Isles and the final 900 foot climb up the granite side of Half Dome climbers deserve to take a rest in one of the most beautiful places on earth.

    On Top of the World

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  • Robachu1's Profile Photo

    A Well-Deserved Rest

    by Robachu1 Written Aug 14, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    After the 8 mile uphill hike from Happy Isles and the final 900 foot climb up the granite side of Half Dome climbers deserve to take a rest in one of the most beautiful places on earth.

    On Top of the World
    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Mountain Climbing
    • Hiking and Walking

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  • pmarshuk's Profile Photo

    Half Dome

    by pmarshuk Updated May 16, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This outcrop of granite in the shape of half a dome has become the logo of Yosemite. The missing half was sheared off by glacial erosion.

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  • mrclay2000's Profile Photo

    Another View of Half Dome

    by mrclay2000 Updated May 5, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Half Dome's unique position and shape make it among the most easily identifiable landmarks in the Valley. The view from Glacier Point is as good as they come.

    Half Dome from Glacier Point
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    • National/State Park
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Family Travel

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  • sunnywong's Profile Photo

    'Half Dome' the huge domed granite mountain

    by sunnywong Written Feb 25, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is a huge domed granite mountain, 8,800 feet high that was cut in two by glacial activity, leaving a 2,200 foot cliff with the steepest vertical grade in the USA

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

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