Step-by-Step Guide Of Yosemite Half Dome Hiking 


Step-by-Step Guide Of Yosemite Half Dome Hiking 

For enthusiastic hikers, they do not mind when sunrise (even before waking up), travelling 14-16 miles halfway an epic adventure. Indeed, this is Yosemite’s most popular day trip (which is why you need to request pre-authorization). You also need high-quality hiking shoes and gloves, plenty of extra food and water, and good health. However, when you finally stand on the huge granite dome and enjoy the stunning panoramic view of the Yosemite Valley, all the expected plans and work are definitely worth it. At the end of Yosemite Half Dome, use cables to help hikers. This is a once in a lifetime experience.

Half-Dome Hike: What Is It?


Hikers take an average of 10 to 12 hours to complete, and the half-dome tour begins at Happy Isles in Yosemite Valley. You can choose: follow the mist trail (more steeply retreating after spring and Nevada Falls) or follow the longer John Muir Trail, which gently exits the valley. Whichever path you choose, it will intersect above the Nevada Falls, where you will find the last swim of the Half Dome Trail. You are now halfway through.

After going back through the woods to the base of the Half Dome, the road began to climb seriously. In the granite dome, thousands of feet of hikers have polished steep passages and underground rocks.

Photo Credit

Photo Credit

The final span of the actual top actually includes climbing a series of threaded cables. Depending on weather conditions, it is usually only possible to walk to the top of the mountain when the cable is in place, from Memorial Day (late May) to Columbus Day (early October). The cables are only 400 feet long, and the angle of inclination does not exceed 45 degrees, but you will swear that they will be almost vertical. Surprisingly, it is the strength of the arms that causes you to reach the top, not the calf muscles.

Facts About The Height Of The Half-Dome


  • Distance: 17 miles round trip
  • Height: 5,457 feet
  • Difficulty: very stressful
  • Duration: 10-14 hours.
  • License: You must have a license to download sub-bus and hemispherical cables.
  • Best time to walk: At the beginning of the season, the waterfall reaches its peak due to melting.

  • Worst walking time: on any day with almost no rain. Even in light rain, smooth granite can quickly become dangerous.
  • Drinking water: Drinking water is available, 8 miles below the boardwalk under Vernal Falls, and can also be found in Happy Isles and Curry Village (.75mi from the boardwalk).

  • Facilities: On Happy Island, there are bathrooms below the Spring Festival waterfall and above the Spring Festival waterfall.

Get Permits For Half Dome Hike First


Since the Half Dome is a popular experience, the National Park provides conditions for allowing hikers who want to climb the rope. Once the cable is in place, a one-day walking pass is required seven days a week (if you are a climber, you can only climb half of the dome).

Between March 1 and March 31, licenses can be obtained in advance through the lottery on The result was announced in mid-April. There is a license to use the cable every day, and there are lottery tickets every day for the first two days.

Between Memorial Day and Columbus Day, a total of 400 permits will be issued each day (300 days of travel and 100 appearances on the back). The cable helps the last 400 feet of hikers in the Yosemite Half Dome.


Stay Safe On The Go


When thunderstorms are expected, or the sky will be lightning or recent rains make the tracks and cables too slippery to move safely, do not try to try at this height. Start as early as possible during the day to avoid crowding the cables later. Stay inside the cable to ensure the safety and allow the fastest and strongest climbers to pass through. If you are unsure whether you can reach the top, consider bypassing the cable base. Some people accidentally fall on this road, so safety should be the most important factor in walking.

Photo Credit

Photo Credit


The most important thing to be prepared to stay safe in Half Dome is to be fully prepared. The garden guard recommends bringing at least 4 litres of water per person for this height. Although you can boil, filter or purify the water of the Merced River, there is no drinking water near the Half Dome Pass and even the small Yosemite Valley can be used. Bring enough food and snacks, so that you have enough energy to reach the peak.


Watch for signs of altitude sickness, dryness, and heatstroke while walking


Wearing shoes with good traction (ideal hiking shoes) is essential. For example, wearing leather gloves can help you grip the cable better, especially when returning from the top. If you sweat, the wires can easily pass through your hands. Do not put gloves on the bottom of a hemisphere as many hikers do. What’s wrong with bundling everything, including food, garbage, recycling and toilet paper, this is very important. Garbage may be a problem in this ordinary lane, especially food and other scented items that restore the black bear to human survival. Remember not to feed wild animals in the park.


What to take with you on the Half-Dome Hike? 


Hiking shoes: You need hiking shoes or hiking shoes at this height. No tennis shoes or running shoes. When climbing cables, you should wear good traction shoes to reduce skidding.

Water: Each person should take 4 litres of water.

Gloves. Gloves must be used to lift and lower cables to protect hands.

Your Identity(ID): Make sure to put it in your bag. You also need to bring an ID card issued by the government that matches your name.

The sunscreen is shaded along the way, but the cable and Half Dome are completely exposed and maybe here at noon.

Harness and clip. This is the best way to stay safe when raising and lowering cables. If you plan to do this, you will need to use wire harnesses, safety clasps and Y-shaped wires. We will not use wire harnesses and wire clips on the cables, but if we do it again, we will do it.

Walking pole (optional). When walking, the struts can reduce the weight of the legs by about 30%, relieve knee pain and other symptoms. I use a black diamond-shaped column z distance and like it. It can be easily folded to fit hiking suitcases and backpacks and is very lightweight. Posts come in different sizes, so make sure to choose the correct length based on your height.

Photo Credit

Alternatives to Mist and Muir Trails


There are many other options to reach the Half Dome, as well as to perform fog and Muir orbits.

  • From Glacier Point: 20 miles round trip

  • From Lake Tenaya: 23 miles round trip

You can divide this hike into two to three days camping in the small Yosemite camp at night. On the first day, walk along the mist trail to Little Yosemite Camp (4.3 miles), the next day go up and down half a dome 7 miles, and then return to Yosemite Valley through Mist and Muir Trails on the third day.

Want to hike, the Half Dome? Leave a comment below!

Saba Ghani
Saba Ghani

Since 2017, Saba Ghani has been serving as the talented and dedicated chief content writer for Pakistan Tour and Travel & EMHI Solutions. With her exceptional writing skills and in-depth knowledge of the travel industry, she has been instrumental in crafting engaging and informative content that captivates the audience. You can catch her at [email protected] or Twitter

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