THE WELCH COMPANY
440 Davis Court #1602
San Francisco, CA 94111-2496
415 781 5700
S U M M A R Y
DIARY: September 18, 2013 06:20 AM Wednesday;
Yosemite Half Dome hike 18 miles and 1 mile up.
2...Prepare Half Dome Hike Bandage Wound Assemble Provisions
3...Trailhead Half Dome Mist Trail to Vernal Falls Stop #8
4...Paved Path 1st Mile to Vernal Falls Foot Bridge from Trailhead
........Map Trail to Half Dome Hike
5...Paved Path 1st Mile to Vernal Falls Foot Bridge from Trailhead
6...Foot Bridge to Vernal Falls New Drinking Fountains
7...Mist Trail Steep Narrow Stone Steps Past Foot Bridge to Vernal Falls
8...John Muir Trail Separates from Mist Trail Flatter Route Vernal Falls
9...Neveda Falls Trail Difficult to Find at Vernal Falls
10...Little Yosemite Valley Asked Directions to Half Dome
11...De Ja Vu Woman Offers Water for Difficult Hike to Half Dome
12...Little Yosemite Valley Trail Relatively Flat .5 Miles
13...Half Dome Trail Above Little Yosemite Valley Difficult to Find
14...Cables Permits Given Another Party of 3 Hike Half Dome
15...Sub Dome Swishbacks Very Difficult Permits Required Hike Cables
16...Permits Hike Cables Given to Another Party Start Sub Dome Swishbacks
17...Half Dome Permits Given Another Party Hike Sub Dome Swishbacks
18...Switchbacks Sub Dome Difficult Starting to Tire But No Cramps
19...Gloves Cables Final Ascent Top of Half Dome Essential
20...Cables Difficult Ascend Top Half Dome Gloves Essential
21...Cables Difficult Last 400' to Top of Half Dome Takes 30 Minutes
22...Half Dome Peak Reached 5.5 Hours
23...Ross Notified Reached Top of Half Dome Cellphone Call
24...Kathy Happy Half Dome Project Phase 1 Complete, Plan Dinner 1800
25...Explore Half Dome Summit Yosemite Valley 1 Mile Below
26...Return from Top of Half Dome Using Cables
27...Steep Swishbacks Return from Top of Sub Dome Nearly Fell
28...Long Endless Switchbacks to Little Yosemite Valley
29...John Muir Trail Longer Not Much Easier than Shorter Trail
30...Falling Fatigue No Injuries Hurrying to Avoid Hiking at Night
31...Recovery Half Dome Hike
32...Assessment Future Considerations Next Half Dome Hike
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Yosemite Half-Dome Hike 11 Hours Reached Top Complete Original Hike
1803 - ..
1804 - Summary/Objective
180501 - Follow up ref SDS 31 0000, ref SDS 29 0000.
180503 - Hiked to top of Half Dome and back, 18 miles. This was 2 miles longer
180504 - than expected. ref SDS 0 ON4F Hike to Vernal Falls and on to Nevada
180505 - Falls was more difficult than I remembered. ref SDS 0 J65I De ja vu
180506 - encountering a woman coming down John Muir Trail in Little Yosemite
180507 - Valley, and offering water to complete Half Dome hike, as occurred 20
180508 - years ago. ref SDS 0 M666 At start of Sub Dome switchbacks, gave
180509 - extra 3 permits to another group from Chezk Republic. ref SDS 0 W77N
180510 - Legs never cramped, so got farther than 20 years ago. ref SDS 0 A59N
180511 - At top of Sub Dome, people struggling up the cables to reach the top
180512 - of Half Dome looked harder than expected. ref SDS 0 TH3F A woman
180513 - helped find gloves for climbing the steel cables. ref SDS 0 TS53
180514 - Using the cables was much more difficult than expected; had to rest
180515 - several time, but somehow made it to the top. ref SDS 0 YX6J Took 30
180516 - minutes to climb the last 400 feet, reaching the top 5.5 hours after
180517 - starting. ref SDS 0 C75O Called and told Ross that he was correct -
180518 - Half Dome seems much more difficult than Mount Diablo. ref SDS 0 FF5G
180519 - Called Kathy and planned dinner at 1800. ref SDS 0 YO8L Explored the
180520 - summit and Yosemite Valley below. Rested for 10 minutes, then headed
180521 - home. ref SDS 0 KS3J Getting down the cables and sub dome swishbacks
180522 - was equally or more difficult. ref SDS 0 UZ5J It was dark when I
180523 - finally reached the trailhead at Happy Isle. Fortunately, there was a
180524 - shuttle bus at stop #18; took it back to Yosemite Lodge, where Kathy
180525 - was waiting with the "drink." Too tired to eat, and body hurt too
180526 - much to sleep. Cut on left foot was not bleeding, and did not look
180527 - worse after 17 miles. ref SDS 0 XU6N Assessment - hike was more
180528 - difficult than expected, but preperation past few months was adequate.
180529 - ref SDS 0 QE4L Body held up well: no significant injuries nor pains;
180530 - difficulty sleeping due to general discomfort likely due to
180531 - dehydration, which can be assuaged next time by taking another bottle
180532 - of water. ref SDS 0 818J
180534 - ..
180535 - Youtube hiking Half Dome...
180537 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PdCylcA_c40#t=377.992753
180539 - [On 130919 0630 feeling better and visiting Yosemite Valley
180540 - museum and Information Center, day after Half Dome hike.
180541 - ref SDS 32 5G7I
180543 - ..
180544 - [On 130919 0630 continue Ross' tradition of celebration
180545 - drink on reaching Half Dome, at Awhanhee hotel, ref SDS 32
180546 - V66N, then had a steak dinner to underscore celebration.
180547 - ref SDS 32 PC5H
180549 - ..
180550 - [On 131015 0724 lab results conflict with increased
180551 - exercise, including Half Dome hike. ref SDS 35 IM9N
180553 - ..
180554 - [On 131017 1000 VA medical chart Progress Notes report Half
180555 - Dome hike was challenging, but successful, indicating the
180556 - record was reviewed by the doctor. ref SDS 37 V24N
180558 - ..
180559 - [On 131017 1000 meeting Doctor Egan at VA on increasing
180560 - exercise and evaluate new drugs to manage cholesterol.
180561 - ref SDS 36 D95H
180563 - ..
180564 - [On 131022 2248 notify Robin results climbing Half Dome.
180565 - ref SDS 38 O64W
180567 - ..
180568 - [On 131106 1103 notify Amy results climbing Half Dome.
180569 - ref SDS 42 XG33
180571 - ..
180572 - [On 131203 2115 Ross mentioned that he and Claudia will try
180573 - to join the trip to Yosemite next year on 140916. up,
180574 - ref SDS 43 LZ5N
180576 - ..
180577 - [On 131028 made reservations at Yosemite Lodge to hike Half
180578 - Dome on 140917. ref SDS 41 FV5G
180580 - ..
180581 - [On 140301 applied for permit to hike Half Dome on 140917.
180582 - ref SDS 44 HI9J
180584 - ..
180585 - [On 140414 0441 received permit to hike Half Dome on
180586 - 140917. ref SDS 50 01EA
180591 - ..
1808 - Background
180901 - On 940917 hiked to near cables on Half Dome route. ref SDS 2 HA6J
180903 - On 950918 hiked Half Dome trail about half-way, but had to return due
180904 - to blisters. ref SDS 10 NM6V
180906 - ..
180907 - On 110907 discussed another hike to Half Dome with Ross, during game
180908 - at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. ref SDS 13 YS87
180910 - ..
180911 - On 120130 Reuters reports Yosemite planning to restrict hiking Half
180912 - Dome beginning in 2013. ref SDS 16 PC5G Planning Half Dome hike
180913 - requires ordering permit well in advance. ref SDS 16 6D7K
180915 - ..
180916 - On 121024 0855 made reservations at Yosemite Lodge to hike Half-Dome
180917 - the following year on 130918, ref SDS 17 BU9I; and, received letter
180918 - from Yosemite Lodge confirming reservations. ref SDS 17 LZ5H
180920 - ..
180921 - On 121109 0910 called Ross - they will make arrangements for lodging
180922 - nearer to 130918, if they can make the trip West to hike Half Dome.
180923 - ref SDS 18 QA8L
180925 - ..
180926 - On 130301 filed lottery application 6-1453944 for hiking CABLES ON
180927 - HALF DOME, ref SDS 19 HI9J, and created an account with
180928 - Recreation.gov. ref SDS 19 7J4L Ross listed for alternate group
180929 - leader. ref SDS 19 VL5H
180931 - ..
180932 - On 130415 1636 permit 6-1453944 awarded for group of 4 to hike
180933 - Yosemite Half-Dome Cables on 130918. ref SDS 20 JZ8H
180935 - ..
180936 - On 130415 1636 at 1738 notified Ross permit 6-1453944 awarded for
180937 - group of 4 to hike Yosemite Half-Dome Cables on 130918. ref SDS 20 K24O
180939 - ..
180940 - On 130416 Ross notified that he and Claudia plan to do the Yosemite
180941 - visit. ref SDS 21 AX4O
180943 - ..
180944 - On 130419 0838 letter to Ross transmitting permits to hike Half-Dome
180945 - on 130918, and propose he and Claudia stay with us in the room at
180946 - Yosemite Lodge. ref SDS 22 6X8L
180948 - ..
180949 - On 130420 0638 Ross responded - he and Claudia staying with us in
180950 - Yosemite Lodge. ref SDS 23 AX4O
180952 - ..
180953 - On 130422 1035 called Yosemite Lodge to verify room accomodations, and
180954 - discovered Yosemite Lodge made a mistake in that the room will have
180955 - only a single king-size bed and not 2 additional beds nor a sofa with
180956 - double mattres, ref SDS 24 AX4O; the hotel did schedule to add another
180957 - single bed, and there is possibility of getting another one if
180958 - available once we arrive. ref SDS 24 K68M Notified Ross of room
180959 - accomocations and proposal for making due with what is currently
180960 - scheduled. ref SDS 24 RK5O Also discussed transportation for him and
180961 - Claudia. ref SDS 24 ST50
180963 - ..
180964 - On 130720 hiked Mt Diablo in Concord, to prepare for Half Dome hike.
180965 - ref SDS 25 318I
180967 - ..
180968 - On 130816 0734 Ross advised that Claudia cannot make the trip.
180969 - ref SDS 26 KB7H
180971 - ..
180972 - On 130816 0734 called Ross to coordinate departure for Yosemite on
180973 - 130817. ref SDS 26 3N6F
180975 - ..
180976 - On 130910 1325 reminded Ross to print permit for hiking Half-Dome, and
180977 - bring him on his flight West, which he has scheduled on 130911.
180978 - ref SDS 27 5O7L
180980 - ..
180981 - On 130911 1102 sent letter reminding Ross to print the permit for
180982 - hiking Half Dome and bring with him on flight from JFT to San
180983 - Francisco. ref SDS 28 5U4F
180985 - ..
180986 - On 130914 1340 Ross called - he and Claudia are in Paso Robles for
180987 - business meetings; he learned of a businsess emergency that requires
180988 - returning immediately to Danbury in Connecticut, so he cannot make
180989 - Half-Dome hike on Wednesday, 130918. ref SDS 29 FQ9J
180991 - ..
180992 - On 130916 0633 cut instep left foot 2" above toes, jeopardize hike to
180993 - Half Dome in 2 days. ref SDS 30 MQ5I Trip to San Francisco walking
180994 - around town foot held up okay, so hopeful Half Dome hike is good to
180995 - go. ref SDS 30 HW8K
180997 - ..
180998 - On 130917 0830 drove to Yosemite Valley for hike to Half Dome.
180999 - ref SDS 31 QX3O
181004 - ..
1813 - Progress
181401 - Prepare Half Dome Hike Bandage Wound Assemble Provisions
181403 - Up and preparing for hike. Checked cut on left foot, reported on
181404 - 130916 0633. ref SDS 30 MQ5I Didn't look great, but applied circular
181405 - bandage with a hole cut out to protect wound. Added bandaid to secure
181406 - in place during hike. That was the best that could be done.
181408 - ..
181409 - Decided to wear Adidas Response Trail shoes, purchased on 111011 1045.
181410 - ref SDS 14 J64L instead of newer Adidas Response Cushion. Response
181411 - Trail shoes have a wider sole that may hold up better climbing rocky,
181412 - uneven surfaces. Adidas Response Cushion may be better suited for
181413 - smooth roadway surfaces, like Concord hiking route, reported on 101010
181414 - 0744. ref SDS 12 OZ4P
181416 - [On 140323 2344 bought new pair Adidas Response Trail rerun
181417 - shoes, for Half Dome hike. ref SDS 45 QX7M
181419 - ..
181420 - [On 140618 1253 paid $20 to repair interior heel lining on
181421 - Adidas Response Trail Shoes, and found the repair very
181422 - effective - heel does not slip so prevents blisters, as
181423 - occurred repairing interior heel lining on Adidas Response
181424 - Cushion shoes resoled by Dean's Shoe Repair. ref SDS 51
181425 - LR5R
181427 - ..
181428 - Took Glucosamine Chondroitin for left knee, per protocol.
181430 - ..
181431 - Seems chilly outside, so decided to take a light coat. This is also
181432 - helpful to carry a bottle of water - 16 oz - rather than carry by hand
181433 - the entire hike. This bottle of water is left over from 2010, when
181434 - Millie bought bottled regularly at Costco. Also took a few bandaids
181435 - in case blisters develop. Put some Cherrios in a plastic bag and
181436 - carried them in a pocket.
181438 - [...below on 130918 0620 left knee with severe degenerative
181439 - arthritis no pain going up nor coming down - seems like a
181440 - miracle. ref SDS 0 818J
181442 - ..
181443 - Next time will take 2 bottles of water.
181445 - ..
181446 - Carried billfold in case there is a McDonald's along the way, or for
181447 - ID if I fall off a cliff. One authority reports a hotel was opened in
181448 - 1870, at the base of Nevada Falls, and now near Silver Apron Bridge on
181449 - the John Muir Trail. The hotel was originally called the "Alpine
181450 - House. Later it went by the name "La Casa Nevada." Evidently, the
181451 - business did not prosper, possibly due to difficult access. The
181452 - owners may also have closed the hotel to protect the environment.
181453 - (Actually, the Snow's who built and operated the hotel died around
181454 - 1890, the hotel was run haphazardly for 2 years, and fell into
181455 - disrepair. It burned down in 1900.
181457 - http://www.nps.gov/yose/historyculture/snow.htm
181460 - ..
181461 - Trailhead Half Dome Mist Trail to Vernal Falls Stop #8
181462 - Paved Path 1st Mile to Vernal Falls Foot Bridge from Trailhead
181464 - Took shuttle with Kathy from stop #8 at Yosemite Lodge to Happy Isle
181465 - stop #16. Like in 1995, the bus was late, ref SDS 10 NM6V Planned to
181466 - start hike at 0800, so wanted to take 0720 bus. We were up early and
181467 - ready, so went out to the stop at 0650 to get the first bus that
181468 - leaves at 0700. However, the bus did not arrive until 0715. After
181469 - boarding the driver waited another 10 minutes and left at 0730. We
181470 - were the only passengers. Finally arrived at Happy Isle stop #16
181471 - about 0800. This is like the last time, when the bus was much later
181472 - than posted schedule, reported on 950916 0700. ref SDS 10 NM6V
181474 - ..
181475 - Had to walk a short distance from Bus Stop #16, about 150 yards across
181476 - a bridge to the trailhead for what seems to be called the "Mist Trail"
181477 - to Vernal Falls. This is the same trail for starting the hike to Half
181478 - Dome. Walked another .25 miles to the paved trail that starts up to
181479 - Vernal Falls. There is a mileage marker sign at this location showing
181480 - distance to Half Domeis 8.2 miles.
181482 - ..
181483 - This makes entire round trip about 17 miles.
181486 - ..
1817 - 0758
181801 - Kathy took a picture recording surprise learning the Half Dome hike is
181802 - 2 miles longer than expected.
181806 - ..
181807 - [On 140917 0540 hiking Half Dome next year planned to start
181808 - at 0600, but was delayed and so started at 0640.
181809 - ref SDS 52 YK4G
181812 - ..
181813 - Map of the route is shown on the Internet...
181815 - ..
181816 - Map Trail to Half Dome Hike
181819 - http://www.everytrail.com/guide/half-dome-hike/map#poi-13
181821 - ..
181822 - Nobody else was on the trail that we could see either in front or
181823 - behind us. We started alone at 0800. Last time with Ross and Teavo,
181824 - we had to work our way through a big crowd of hikers, reported on
181825 - 950916 0700, ref SDS 10 NM76
181827 - ..
181828 - The change from crowded conditions 20 years ago reflects new park
181829 - policy requiring permits that limits hiking Half Dome to only 400
181830 - people each day, reported on 120130 1515. ref SDS 16 6D7K
181833 - ..
181834 - Paved Path 1st Mile to Vernal Falls Foot Bridge from Trailhead
181836 - The first mile of the Mist trail is a paved path on the North side of
181837 - the Merced river gourge. Kathy came along to hike toward Vernal
181838 - Falls. This trail is much different from Lafayette Reservoir. Kathy
181839 - hikes about 100 yards up the first difficult hill at Lafayette, then
181840 - the route is flat for a quarter mile or so. Over the next 2 miles
181841 - Lafayette has 3 or 4 moderate hills. Today, Kathy did well hiking
181842 - about .5 miles on the Mist trail before stopping to rest.
181844 - ..
181845 - I went on up. After resting, Kathy continued also, and nearly made it
181846 - to the Vernal Falls foot bridge that crosses the Merced river, about 1
181847 - mile from the trailhead.
181851 - ..
181852 - Foot Bridge to Vernal Falls New Drinking Fountains
181853 - Mist Trail Steep Narrow Stone Steps Past Foot Bridge to Vernal Falls
181854 - John Muir Trail Separates from Mist Trail Flatter Route Vernal Falls
181856 - Took about 25 minutes to reach the Vernal Falls foot bridge. There is
181857 - a water station with about 6 drinking fountains. There is also a
181858 - building for a Ranger Station and restrooms.
181860 - ..
181861 - This seems much different from the prior hikes in 1994, and 1995. I
181862 - remember there was only a single water spigot at this location, and no
181863 - building. On the first hike in 1994, there was great relief finally
181864 - reaching this water spigot after hiking down 6 miles from below the
181865 - swishbacks, having failed to reach Half Dome, reported on 940917 0742.
181866 - ref SDS 2 HB94
181868 - ..
181869 - After crossing the bridge, the South side trail changes markedly for
181870 - the remaining .7 miles up to Vernal Falls. A hundred feet or so past
181871 - the bridge the trail divides at "Register Rock P." The Mist trail hugs
181872 - the vertical cliff of the Merced river gourge. A sign identifies the
181873 - trailhead for the flatter and longer John Muir Trail also to Vernal
181874 - Falls.
181876 - ..
181877 - Took the shorter Mist trail to Vernal Falls.
181879 - ..
181880 - Much of this trail is very steep, solid granite rock steps are formed
181881 - from large, irregular stones. The route takes strength and endurance
181882 - to climb, but also concentration to step correctly ascending the trail
181883 - up to Vernal Falls. Steps vary from 6" to over 18" in height and
181884 - width. At several places the path narrows to less than 3'. A metal
181885 - railing reduces danger of bumping the verticle cliff on the right side
181886 - and falling off the cliff into the gourge on the left.
181888 - ..
181889 - Reached Vernal Falls about 53 minutes from Happy Isle starting point.
181890 - Glad this was over. Don't like hiking vertically continually; however
181891 - legs and lungs felt strong. Paused to take few pictures and admire
181892 - the famous Emerald Pool.
181896 - ..
181897 - [On 140917 0540 following year, getting to Vernal Falls
181898 - took about 63 minutes, 10 minutes longer than this year.
181899 - ref SDS 53 CI7O
181902 - ..
181903 - Neveda Falls Trail Difficult to Find at Vernal Falls
181905 - There seemed to be 2 routes up to Nevada Falls, however, nothing was
181906 - well marked. Asked some hikers and they pointed in 2 directions.
181907 - They said the John Muir Trail veering to the right is flatter and
181908 - longer.
181910 - ..
181911 - Took the left shorter, steeper trail to Nevada Falls. Hoped and
181912 - remembered the trail to Nevada Falls was less difficult than getting
181913 - to Vernal Falls. This turned out to be false hope. It seemed even
181914 - steeper and comprised of continual swishbacks. Many places the trail
181915 - was not evident, so there was risk and worry about taking a wrong
181916 - turn.
181918 - ..
181919 - About 70% of the way up to Nevada Falls was passed by a couple, man
181920 - and woman. We talked for a few moments. They had climbed Mount
181921 - Whitney a few days earlier, and were going up to climb the face of
181922 - Half Dome today.
181924 - ..
181925 - Mentioned the bartenders report last night in the Mountain Lounge
181926 - Room, where we had a drink, saying that rock climbing the face of Half
181927 - Dome is easier than the hike. 130917 0830, ref SDS 31 Z94I The guy
181928 - said he feels that is true.
181930 - ..
181931 - Reached Nevada Falls about 110 minutes from the start.
181935 - ..
181936 - At Nevada Falls, there was a handwritten notice on a conventional
181937 - marking board explaining the trail I took is very steep, and the other
181938 - way is flatter and easier, called "John Muir Trail." Wondered why
181939 - there are not more signs telling people which way to go down below at
181940 - the foot bridge?
181942 - ..
181943 - Beyond Nevada Falls the Merced river winds through Little Yosemite
181944 - Valley about 4.2 miles from the trailhead at Happy Isle, so it seems
181945 - like half-way to Half Dome. The numbers are misleading, because the
181946 - next 4 miles turn out to be much more difficult.
181950 - ..
181951 - Little Yosemite Valley Asked Directions to Half Dome
181952 - De Ja Vu Woman Offers Water for Difficult Hike to Half Dome
181954 - The trail splits again with the John Muir Trail to the right tracking
181955 - the river. A woman was coming down this trail, so I asked which way
181956 - to Half Dome?
181958 - ..
181959 - She said the shorter route is left but steeper with swishbacks.
181961 - ..
181962 - Said thanks and turned left.
181964 - ..
181965 - The woman asked if I have water? She said the trail to Half Dome is
181966 - long and very steep, and so hikers need water. This was de ja vu.
181968 - ..
181969 - About 20 years ago at nearly the same location, another woman hiker
181970 - offered water, reported on 950916 0700. ref SDS 10 FA5O
181972 - ..
181973 - Explained having come up from Happy Isle on the Mist trail. Cannot
181974 - imagine anything being longer and steeper. Pulled the pint bottle of
181975 - water in the coat pocket and held it up to show I have water, and so
181976 - far have not needed any.
181978 - ..
181979 - She smiled and said you will, and went on. Thanked her for the offer
181980 - and continued on the left trail.
181982 - ..
181983 - By now the sun was shining higher in the sky, so didn't need the coat.
181984 - Kept it on to carry the bottle of water in the pocket.
181986 - ..
181987 - Next time will consider a small pack for water, gloves, and to stow a
181988 - coat if needed to start. (see Assessment, below. ref SDS 0 BH5L)
181991 - ..
181992 - Little Yosemite Valley Trail Relatively Flat .5 Miles
181994 - The trail through the valley is mostly flat for about half-mile, but
181995 - very sandy. It is marked by small diameter logs on either side. A
181996 - path has been formed by hikers on the edge of the main trail because
181997 - firmer soil makes walking easier. This conserves energy. You have to
181998 - step over a few logs along the way that traverse the path and not the
181999 - main trail. These logs are mostly less than 2' in diameter, so this
182000 - is easier than walking in the sand.
182002 - ..
182003 - Past the valley, the trail gets steeper, but is still not difficult.
182004 - There is soil with shrubs, some grass, a lot of trees, and also open
182005 - space in Little Yosemite Valley.
182007 - ..
182008 - At about 1050, nearly 3 hours after starting the hike, took a picture
182009 - of a deer grazing about 20' away and adjacent to the trail. It seemed
182010 - comfortable with people walking by.
182016 - ..
182017 - Trail then turns into large irregular stone steps comprising long
182018 - switchbacks of 5 - 20 yards, and going continually uphill, similar to
182019 - the .7 mile Vernal Falls trail, explained above, ref SDS 0 J65I, but
182020 - for about 3 miles. This trail is mostly open and mostly wider, rather
182021 - narrow and along the edge of a gourge, like the Mist trail.
182023 - ..
182024 - At this time, began overtaking hikers, mostly in two's - man and
182025 - woman, or 2 guys. Don't remember seeing anyone hiking alone. Passed
182026 - a few groups of 3 to 5 people. Also passing people coming down from
182027 - Half Dome. They either started at Happy Isle in Yosemite Valley much
182028 - earlier than 0700, or they stayed over in Little Yosemite Valley and
182029 - so made the top of Half Dome in half the time.
182033 - ..
182034 - Half Dome Trail Above Little Yosemite Valley Difficult to Find
182036 - The trail is very rugged and often hard to discern direction. Where
182037 - there is soil, foot prints show the way. Asked for directions several
182038 - times and followed the crowd.
182040 - ..
182041 - Had to stop 3 or 4 times to rest for a few minutes. Drank a little
182042 - water ate a few bites of Cherrios from a plastic bag. This was a big
182043 - improvement from the hike in 1994. Ross was fine, but I had to stop
182044 - continually for 10 to 20 minutes, because legs were cramping, reported
182045 - on 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 HB48 Today, the legs never cramped, so only
182046 - needed a few short stops to take pictures.
182048 - ..
182049 - It was fun passing people on the trail. I got passed a few times
182050 - while resting, then passed those folks when they rested further up.
182052 - ..
182053 - In 1994, we got water at "The Little Spring," about 6 miles up at
182054 - elevation 7,200, reported on 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 HB54 The
182055 - following year, Ross reported getting water there again, and making
182056 - use of a purifying filter he purchased when we drove up the day
182057 - before, reported on 950916 0700. ref SDS 10 NN76
182059 - ..
182060 - Today, I forgot about The Little Spring, and didn't notice it nor see
182061 - anyone stopping to refill their water supply.
182063 - [On 180912 0545 durng 3rd climb to top of Half Dome,
182064 - Lindsey stopped near top of Long Switchbacks to refill
182065 - water at a small, natural spring behind a large 6' diamters
182066 - tree cut out for the trail. ref SDS 54 XC4M
182068 - ..
182069 - At this point the trail gets steeper for about a mile.
182071 - ..
182072 - Around noon, reached elevation 7,900 feet and 6.9 miles. There is a
182073 - clearing with flat, rocky terraine, but somehow big trees are growing.
182074 - This is near the base of the Sub Dome. You can look up and see Half
182075 - Dome in the distance, but not the cables. They are on the other side.
182080 - ..
182081 - Rested here for about 5 minutes and took several pictures of the huge,
182082 - majestic gourge. Far on the other side are vast monoliths of solid
182083 - granite rock. Somehow trees are growing...
182087 - ..
182088 - Headed up the trail a hundred yards and reached the base of the Sub
182089 - Dome. There were several groups of people sitting around and talking,
182090 - mostly in 2's and 3's.
182093 - ..
182094 - Cables Permits Given Another Party of 3 Hike Half Dome
182095 - Sub Dome Swishbacks Very Difficult Permits Required Hike Cables
182096 - Permits Hike Cables Given to Another Party Start Sub Dome Swishbacks
182097 - Half Dome Permits Given Another Party Hike Sub Dome Swishbacks
182099 - A Park Ranger was standing at this point looking at the screen of a
182100 - notebook computer. He requested a permit for using the cables. Had
182101 - been wondering when the permit issue would come up.
182103 - ..
182104 - Reached into my pocket and produced the printed permit, as directed by
182105 - instructions received on 130415 1636. ref SDS 20 AX4O The Ranger said
182106 - he didn't need the permit, he just asked for a name. He found the
182107 - name in his notebook computer.
182109 - ..
182110 - Ranger asked where are the other 3 people in the group?
182112 - ..
182113 - Explained change in plans, only one hiker today, per the record on
182114 - 130914 1340. ref SDS 29 FQ9J
182116 - ..
182117 - A young girl, maybe 20 or so, walked over from a group and asked if
182118 - they could have the 3 non-used permits for the cables. The ranger
182119 - said it was okay, if the customer agreed.
182121 - ..
182122 - I agreed and took off.
182125 - ..
182126 - Switchbacks Sub Dome Difficult Starting to Tire But No Cramps
182128 - The trail here begins a long nearly, vertical series of very short
182129 - switchbacks stepping up, similar to the Vernal Falls Mist trail,
182130 - described above, ref SDS 0 J65I, but without the vertical cliff so
182131 - there is exposure to fall off either side. Unlike part of the Mist
182132 - Trail, the Sub Dome trail has no steel hand rails for safety, so care
182133 - is required to avoid falling due to fatigue or loss of balance.
182135 - ..
182136 - For much of this half-mile hike or so, used my hands on the steps
182137 - above to aid stepping upward on the stone slabs. Rested several times
182138 - and had to turn sideways for hikers descending from Half Dome to pass.
182140 - ..
182141 - Youtube video shows level of effort required for this hike, which many
182142 - claim is the most difficult part of climbing Half Dome...
182144 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AiL1uvHN3hE
182146 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mveuJT6-8lw
182148 - ..
182149 - This was a much better situation than in 1994. At that time, legs
182150 - cramped so badly had to turn back, but was also worried that crowded
182151 - conditions on the Sub Dome swishbacks made hiking very risky, reported
182152 - on 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 HB75 Today, legs never cramped, and less
182153 - traffic made the hike a lot safer.
182155 - ..
182156 - About a third or half way up the swishbacks, the girl passed who took
182157 - our permits. She was with another girl and a guy, all seemingly in
182158 - their 20s. Nice to see young people exercising hard and enjoying the
182159 - verities of Yosemite. They each thanked me for the permits, as they
182160 - passed.
182162 - ..
182163 - Took nearly an hour to get up to the top of the Sub Dome, which is at
182164 - the base of Half Dome. Took a picture at 1255 of people going up the
182165 - cables. On site, it suddenly looked more difficult and risky than
182166 - expected. Pictures convey a false impression of people simply walking
182167 - up the side of a hill. This is very misleading, as explained below.
182168 - ref SDS 0 YX6J
182172 - ..
182173 - Coming up the Sub Dome swishbacks it seemed nothing could be harder.
182174 - Seeing people struggling up the cables presented significant
182175 - cost/benefit issues on tackling this final ascent.
182177 - ..
182178 - Ross never mentioned that going up the cables was difficult, until
182179 - today, see below. ref SDS 0 FF5G When he did this hike in 1994, and
182180 - the following year in 1995, on returning, Ross described exhileration
182181 - and awsome views on reaching the top. Then fixed dinner with his
182182 - usual enthusiasm and energy, without any evident effects from the
182183 - hike. After climbing the switchbacks today, and then seeing people
182184 - struggle getting up the cables, it was clear why Ross was hours later
182185 - getting back to camp in House Keeping, after I arrived returning from
182186 - only the base of the Sub Dome and without having done the switchbacks,
182187 - reported on 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 CJ4L
182189 - ..
182190 - Felt a little tired, but figured it wasn't going to get any easier
182191 - waiting around. Walked past everyone resting. Said hello to the 2
182192 - girls and the guy who got the permits. They were also sitting and
182193 - gazing up at people going up and coming down the cables. Turned out
182194 - later, they are in the picture of the cables, reported above.
182195 - ref SDS 0 TH3F
182201 - ..
1825 - 1255
182601 - Gloves Cables Final Ascent Top of Half Dome Essential
182602 - Cables Difficult Ascend Top Half Dome Gloves Essential
182604 - At the foot of the cables there is a crevice in the rock. There were
182605 - maybe 8 or so worn gloves, but it was hard to match them. Found a
182606 - left hand glove and it tested well gripping the cable. Could not find
182607 - a matching right hand glove, so tried a plain cloth glove without any
182608 - rubber grip. This slipped grasping the cable. By this time, a girl
182609 - was fishing around to find gloves in the crevice. Asked if she saw a
182610 - glove that might work better for my right hand? She found something
182611 - that seemed a better match with the left glove. Testing showed it
182612 - slipped worse than the plain cloth glove, so went with plain cloth
182613 - this trip.
182615 - ..
182616 - After the hike, research found recommendation for...
182618 - Atlas Model 330 GLOVE WORK REGRIP BLK
182619 - SKU.............................. ATS330
182621 - ..
182622 - Seatle Marine...
182624 - http://www.seattlemarine.net/productcart/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=1732&idcategory=0
182626 - [On 140403 1254 bought 1 pair gloves locally at Harbor
182627 - Freight Tools for $5. ref SDS 46 6U5I
182629 - ..
182630 - [On 140403 1254 bought 2 more pair gloves from Seattle
182631 - Marine for $6 plus shipping. ref SDS 47 RE5I
182633 - ..
182634 - [On 140409 1601 received 2-pair gloves in US mail from
182635 - Seattle Marine; they fit perfectly, and seem to have a
182636 - great grip for climbing cables at Half Dome. ref SDS 49
182637 - PV7O
182639 - ..
182640 - Another source suggests...
182642 - Atlas Model 370 Nitrille Coated Glove
182644 - http://mrhalfdome.wordpress.com/2011/08/19/gripping-the-half-dome-cables/
182648 - ..
182649 - Cables Difficult Last 400' to Top of Half Dome Takes 30 Minutes
182651 - It is difficult to explain the difficulty, at least for me, of
182652 - traversing the shear granite surface to the top of Half Dome even
182653 - using the cables. The peak of Half Dome was declared "perfectly
182654 - inaccessible" in the early 1870s, by Josiah Whitney of the California
182655 - Geological Survey. In October 1875, George G Anderson climbed to the
182656 - top of Half Dome by drilling and placing iron eyebolts into the
182657 - granite surface. (see Wikipedia as well...
182659 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Half_Dome#Ascents
182661 - ..
182662 - Cables were later constructed in 1919, for hikers to reach the top of
182663 - Half Dome. Had expected from photographs of people using the cables,
182664 - e.g., see above, ref SDS 0 TH3F, that there was sufficient footing to
182665 - walk up the rock surface with cables merely helping to maintain
182666 - balance and provide safety from toppling down 4,000 feet to an early
182667 - destiny. This proved incorrect.
182669 - ..
182670 - Somebody on the hike today noted that not everyone, who makes it up
182671 - the sub-dome switchbacks, even attempts to make the final climb using
182672 - the cables to reach the top, and some who try, turn back. There is a
182673 - fatigue factor. Watching people struggle to climb with the cables can
182674 - be discouraging.
182676 - ..
182677 - Youtube video shows how young people in good condition ascend the
182678 - cables, and illutstrates many struggle...
182680 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhZQlaqzddg
182682 - ..
182683 - [On 130919 0630 hiker reported getting up sub-dome
182684 - switchbacks to cables, but not able to do the cables to
182685 - reach the top of Half Dome. ref SDS 32 JT5H
182687 - ..
182688 - Footing is very poor owing to steepness of the ascent, and to the rock
182689 - having been polished smooth by a summer of continual daily hikers
182690 - climbing up to, and coming down from, Half Dome. As a result, getting
182691 - to the top mainly entails pulling the entire body weight with hands
182692 - gripping the cables. This is aided by 2x4 members that span between
182693 - pipe posts drilled into the rock that hold the cables about 3' apart,
182694 - 3' high and spaced every 10 feet.
182696 - ..
182697 - Some authorities describe pulling hand over hand on a single cable.
182698 - May try this next time. Today, most everyone was using hands on both
182699 - cables to pull themselves up letting go of one cable while reaching up
182700 - 6" to move from one 2x4 resting position to the next one 10' up.
182702 - ..
182703 - Since only the left hand had a good grip, it was slow going getting up
182704 - the cables. Initially, I was behind the woman, who had helped me look
182705 - for a better glove, per above, ref SDS 0 TS53, but fell further back
182706 - trying to grip with only one good glove. Considered taking the glove
182707 - off and using a bare right hand, as a hiker reported using no gloves,
182708 - yesterday, when we arrived. However, he indicated this caused severe
182709 - injury to his hands, reported on 130917 0830. ref SDS 31 EC6M So,
182710 - decided to soldier on with the bad glove. Late arrival at the top was
182711 - not a critical issue today.
182713 - ..
182714 - Several people passed, including the party of 3, who used our permits.
182715 - They all thanked me again for giving our extra permits, as they
182716 - squeezed by pulling themselves towards the top of the Dome. The young
182717 - girl who made the request chatted for a few minutes resting while her
182718 - colleagues continued up. She said they were from the Chezk Republic.
182719 - The other girl never spoke. The guy spoke with better English, but
182720 - sounded French.
182722 - ..
182723 - Throughout the entire hike most everyone seemed to be from someplace
182724 - outside the US, comprising a totally cosmopolitan trek.
182726 - ..
182727 - Actually, rested several times using a cable support steel pipe post
182728 - (stanchion) to brace off and lay back against the rock. About
182729 - half-way up began coughing. A woman behind me said the air quality is
182730 - poor, which at first seemed incongruous. She explained there is still
182731 - a lot smoke in the air from forest fires the past month.
182733 - ..
182734 - At some point felt what seemed like a tear in the muscle of the right
182735 - leg above the inside of the knee. The woman behind said it was likely
182736 - just a sore quad.
182738 - ..
182739 - Considered turning back, and saying this was a good effort, and
182740 - resolve to bring good gloves next time.
182742 - ..
182743 - Others encouraged me to go on, including our group of 3, as Ross did
182744 - during the 1994 trip, reported on 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 HB32
182746 - ..
182747 - After a few minutes rest, the body felt good, and there were no leg
182748 - cramps, so struggled on, despite the mind having formed a firm
182749 - conviction that the "top" of Half Dome is only a mythical destination
182750 - that people rave about back in the Valley.
182752 - ..
182753 - Sometimes I could do two or even three 10' sections between 2x4 rests,
182754 - but mostly only 1. Progress was slowed, because others were resting,
182755 - which blocked going forward. People coming down, also slowed the
182756 - ascent. You have to let go of one cable and grasp the other with both
182757 - hands, so people can squeeze by.
182759 - ..
182760 - Another difficulty is granite slab overlays. About 60% of the way up
182761 - an overlay require stepping up and over raised rock, which multiplies
182762 - the body weight to lift. There is another similar overlay about 40'
182763 - further up. This seemed impossible, but after 8 miles, there was no
182764 - going back.
182766 - ..
182767 - Couple of guys went up the outside rather than between the cables,
182768 - pulling themselves hand over hand using only a single cable, like
182769 - climbing a rope. Noticed they had good gloves, and seemingly better
182770 - footing. Could be the path on either side of the cables has better
182771 - footing, because it has not been polished smooth with heavy traffic.
182773 - ..
182774 - A few people had safety lines attached to the cables that slid with
182775 - them as they moved up or down. This slowed everyone, because they had
182776 - to disconnect and reconnect at each of the 60 or so cable posts.
182780 - ..
182781 - Half Dome Peak Reached 5.5 Hours
182783 - Suddenly, the end of the cable was reached and the slope dropped
182784 - dramatically, so it was possible to walk the rest of the way to the
182785 - top of Half Dome. Hard to believe I could walk.
182787 - ..
182788 - It was about 1340, 5.5 hours after leaving the Valley, and about 52
182789 - minutes to ascend the cables. Yesterday, the guy who did the cables
182790 - without gloves, per above, ref SDS 0 LQ8K, related reaching the top of
182791 - Half Dome in 3.5 hours. ref SDS 31 FG4G That would be optimistic for
182792 - me, based on today's experience.
182794 - ..
182795 - Everyone seemed to be sitting and resting at the edge of the dome
182796 - looking out over the Valley.
182798 - ..
182799 - The woman who helped select my gloves, per above, ref SDS 0 TS53, was
182800 - walking toward me from the North point toward the rounded back side of
182801 - the Dome. She was kind to take a picture recording completion of the
182802 - project...
182806 - ..
182807 - Checked for messages on the cellphone. Ross had called and requested
182808 - a progress report. We had discussed trying to call from the top of
182809 - Half Dome, when he and Claudia called last Saturday, reported on
182810 - 130914 1340. ref SDS 29 3N6F
182813 - ..
182814 - Ross Notified Reached Top of Half Dome Cellphone Call
182817 - ..
182818 - Called and told Ross I was on top of this thing, following up our
182819 - prior hike 20 years ago on 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 0001
182821 - ..
182822 - He seemed pleased, and asked what I thought of the cables? He also
182823 - asked if the legs feel rubbery?
182825 - [On 131203 2115 Ross mentioned that he and Claudia will try
182826 - to join the trip to Yosemite next year on 140916. up,
182827 - ref SDS 43 LZ5N
182829 - ..
182830 - Explained the cables were difficult for me (a gross understatement),
182831 - but the body held up. No cramps this trip, as occurred previously in
182832 - 1994, reported on 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 HB72 Hiking the past few
182833 - years, and especially the past few months doing Mount Diable and the
182834 - Rim Trail at Lafayette Reservoir were good preparation.
182836 - ..
182837 - Mentioned that taking nearly an hour to climb the Sub Dome
182838 - switchbacks, per above, ref SDS 0 TH3F, and then taking another 35
182839 - minutes climbing to the top of Half Dome using the cables, ref SDS 0
182840 - U76J, it is clear today, that I was not nearly as close to completing
182841 - the first hike in 1994, as it seemed at the time, reported on 940917
182842 - 0742. ref SDS 2 4977
182844 - ..
182845 - Ross agreed.
182847 - ..
182848 - Told Ross he was correct saying on Saturday that the 17 mile Half Dome
182849 - hike, seems much harder than doing 14 mile Mount Diablo hike, and the
182850 - 5 mile Rim Trail at Lafayette Reservoir, reported on 130914 1340.
182851 - ref SDS 29 KG8J There is nothing like the cables in my training, nor
182852 - the extended sub-dome near-vertical switchbacks, and especially
182853 - nothing like the continual steps of varied height and width, and
182854 - irregular surfaces. None-the-less doing these lessor hikes, plus
182855 - 11-mile dailies around town likely made the hike today possible.
182857 - ..
182858 - Ross asked how the foot held up, cut 2 days ago, reported on 130916
182859 - 0633? ref SDS 30 MQ5I He got the telephone message explaining Half
182860 - Dome hike might be cancelled.
182862 - ..
182863 - Advised this worked out okay with the circular bandage applied this
182864 - morning, per above. ref SDS 0 NM6V Did not lace shoes tight to
182865 - reduce pressure on the cut. Only felt it once, when the left foot
182866 - was twisted slightly to recover balance.
182868 - ..
182869 - Ross asked about food and water, and gloves, all of which he had
182870 - brought up in the call on 130914 1340. ref SDS 29 FE6I
182872 - ..
182873 - Explained using gloves from the pit at the foot of the cables, which
182874 - had poor grip on the cables, per above. ref SDS 0 TS53
182876 - ..
182877 - Further reported so far have had half a bottle of water. It has 9 Fl
182878 - Oz, so that's 4.5 Fl Oz so far. Have saved the other half for the
182879 - trip down. Ate some Cherrios with water on the way up.
182881 - ..
182882 - Chatted some about maybe doing this next year, even though at the
182883 - moment the main focus is on getting down safely.
182885 - ..
182886 - Ross commented that fortunately the rest of the trip is downhill.
182888 - ..
182889 - Joked about avoiding "express delivery."
182891 - ..
182892 - My voice was not very strong, even though did not do a lot of talking
182893 - on the way up. May reflect taking minimum water, smoke in the air,
182894 - or just being tired.
182896 - ..
182897 - Ended the call asking Ross to say high to Claudia, and looking to
182898 - throw the football around with the boys at Thanksgiving, if that works
182899 - out, as Ross discussed on 130914 1340. ref SDS 29 RE5N
182901 - [On 131024 2223 letter to Ross on driving to Yuma for
182902 - Thanksgiving with Ross and Claudia at Hutch's place.
182903 - ref SDS 39 Q067
182905 - ..
182906 - [On 131025 0738 Ross revises holiday planning; discussed
182907 - having Thanksgiving with Armstrongs in Danbury, rather than
182908 - yuma. ref SDS 40 4O5M
182911 - ..
182912 - Kathy Happy Half Dome Project Phase 1 Complete, Plan Dinner 1800
182914 - Called Kathy.
182916 - ..
182917 - She was worried having expected to hear from me hours earlier.
182918 - Explained this was tougher than expected, but somehow made it.
182920 - ..
182921 - She asked about gloves, water and food, as Ross had asked. Gave same
182922 - explanation. ref SDS 0 YO6M
182924 - ..
182925 - Kathy asked about knees?
182927 - ..
182928 - Explained Glucosamine Chondroitin held up well. Didn't feel the left
182929 - knee much on the way up. Strangely, felt the right knee a few times,
182930 - even though it has never presented problems.
182932 - ..
182933 - Kathy said she has enjoyed her day in the Valley, and to hurry back so
182934 - we can celebrate.
182936 - ..
182937 - Explained it may take 4 - 5 hours to get back, so we will miss having
182938 - dinner together at the Food Court in Yosemite Lodge. Urged her to go
182939 - ahead and eat. I won't be hungry when I get back.
182943 - ..
182944 - Explore Half Dome Summit Yosemite Valley 1 Mile Below
182946 - After the call, walked out to the edge of the peak that overlooks the
182947 - Valley. Looked down for possible rock climbers coming up the shear
182948 - face of Half Dome. Might see the couple who passed on the trail
182949 - earlier this morning near Nevada Falls, per above. ref SDS 0 U35M
182951 - ..
182952 - Would liked to have gotten a picture standing on the edge looking down
182953 - into the Valley, but nobody was handy. Thought I took a picture of
182954 - the Valley, showing a broad expanse of flat land 5,000 feet below.
182955 - Some areas had a deep green appearance like cut grass. Later, cannot
182956 - find this picture on the camera, so must have forgot.
182958 - ..
182959 - Someone was laying down to rest. This looked like a good idea.
182961 - ..
182962 - Walked to a raised rock, and tried laying down. However, this was
182963 - more difficult than just sitting up. Began thinking about level of
182964 - effort getting down the cables, down the Sub Dome swishbacks, back to
182965 - Nevada Falls and down more swishbacks at Vernal Falls, per above,
182966 - ref SDS 0 4Q3O, to the safety of the Valley, a bus ride to the Lodge
182967 - and into bed. Eating began to fade in importance.
182970 - ..
182971 - Return from Top of Half Dome Using Cables
182974 - ..
182975 - So, about 1430 headed back. Did not want to wind up going down
182976 - switchbacks at Nevada Falls and Vernal Falls in the dark.
182978 - ..
182979 - Getting down the cables proved nearly as difficult as coming up.
182981 - ..
182982 - Coming up requires pulling with biceps; going down is the reverse
182983 - lowering body weight with triceps. In both cases, there is minimal
182984 - footing so hand grip is crucial. Since the right hand was slippery,
182985 - the left hand and arm carried most of the burden.
182987 - ..
182988 - If we do this again, may add pushups and pullups to training regimin.
182990 - ..
182991 - Going down the cables was slow, with many delays from people clogged
182992 - on the way down, and from people coming up. If I was more confident
182993 - could have repelled down on the outside using just one cable. Didn't
182994 - try it today.
182997 - ..
182998 - Steep Swishbacks Return from Top of Sub Dome Nearly Fell
183000 - When the base of the Dome was finally reached, 30 minutes later or so,
183001 - had forgotten there is a significant rise to reach the switchbacks
183002 - going down the Sub Dome. At that moment, had erased any prospect of
183003 - ever going uphill, so was looking for an escalator or something. No
183004 - luck. So with focus and resolve headed up the curve of the rock to
183005 - the top of the Sub Dome, and then finally start down the switchbacks.
183007 - ..
183008 - Getting down the Sub Dome switchbacks was difficult continually
183009 - lowering the body with each leg for steps that varied from 6" to 2',
183010 - and maintaining balance on irregular stone surfaces. Rested once to
183011 - step aside for others to pass. Tried sitting on one of the steps, but
183012 - lost balance and nearly took a tumble backwards. There happened to be
183013 - a rare bush which I grabbed to avoid a fatefull fall.
183016 - ..
183017 - Long Endless Switchbacks to Little Yosemite Valley
183019 - After getting to the bottom of Sub Dome switchbacks, began ascent of
183020 - Long Switchbacks. Never really stopped after that for about 4 miles
183021 - on the way down. The threesome who used our permits passed me, but
183022 - otherwise I passed a lot of others and nobody else passed me, excpet
183023 - for a young, athletic couple, man and woman, who "ran" down the trail,
183024 - at least past me and others in view.
183026 - ..
183027 - Reaching Little Yosemite Valley provided a break from switchbacks for
183028 - .5 miles.
183030 - ..
183031 - On reaching Nevada Falls, the sun was going down. The permit
183032 - threesome had stopped to rest. They offered water, but I declined in
183033 - order to keep going. They yelled out thanks again for the permits.
183034 - Just waved over my shoulder. Refusing the water was a mistake.
183038 - ..
183039 - John Muir Trail Longer Not Much Easier than Shorter Trail
183040 - Falling Fatigue No Injuries Hurrying to Avoid Hiking at Night
183042 - Decided to take the longer, but flatter John Muir Trail from Nevada
183043 - Falls to Vernal Falls, since fatigue made doing steep stone steps
183044 - problematic. Thought the flatter trail would be less risky.
183046 - ..
183047 - Not sure, however, trading off longer distance for flatter terraine
183048 - was the best choice. There were places somewhat flat for a distance,
183049 - but there were still a lot of stone slab switchbacks on the John Muir
183050 - Trail. The longer you are out there, the darker it gets and harder to
183051 - see the trail. I was alone most of the hike from Nevada Falls all the
183052 - way to the Vernal Falls foot bridge. Had to ask directions a couple
183053 - of times from hikers coming up the trail to camp out over night in
183054 - Little Yosemite Valley.
183056 - ..
183057 - Got a picture of Nevada Falls from the South side of the gorge,
183058 - showing barely a trickle of water flowing over the falls...
183064 - ..
183065 - Finished the last of the water before reaching Vernal Falls.
183067 - ..
183068 - Slipped and lost balance several times stepping down, but only fell
183069 - once more besides on the Sub Dome switchbacks, per above. ref SDS 0
183070 - G478 As the switchback trail wound endlessly down, vowed never to
183071 - step on another stone for the rest of my life. The thought occurred
183072 - as well, that might get lost in the dark or simply not have the energy
183073 - to reach the bottom, and wind up just "returning to nature" or
183074 - something. This was set aside as induced by dehydration. Mouth was
183075 - very dry and body seemed exhaused of all energy. Getting down was the
183076 - only remedy. If there is a next time, will leave earlier in order to
183077 - avoid hiking down a difficult, dangerous trail in the dark, and will
183078 - take 2 bottles of water, or refill at the Little Spring, like Ross did
183079 - in 1995, reported on 950916 0700. ref SDS 10 NN76
183081 - ..
183082 - Overall, like in 1995, it seemed longer and more difficult going down
183083 - hill than it did this morning climbing up the mountain, reported on
183084 - 950916 0700. ref SDS 10 NN37
183086 - ..
183087 - Became totally dark going down the trail from Vernal Falls to the Wood
183088 - Foot bridge. This made it difficult to see the steps, and so, added
183089 - to fatigue that slowed the ascent due to an abundance of caution.
183090 - Tried to use the cell phone for light, but the battery was very low,
183091 - so there was a trade-off to keep enough charge for calling if help
183092 - was needed.
183094 - ..
183095 - Since I had drank all the water in the bottle an hour or so earlier,
183096 - was very pleased to get a long drink from the water fountains at the
183097 - bridge, per above, ref SDS 0 6Q97, and very much like the last hike on
183098 - 940917 0742. ref SDS 2 HB94
183100 - ..
183101 - A few people were sitting in groups to rest at the foot bridge. They
183102 - may have taken the steeper and shorter route down from Nevada Falls,
183103 - per above, ref SDS 0 JA9O, since nobody passed me going down the John
183104 - Muir Trail. Darkness and fatigue prevented recognizing anyone. After
183105 - getting water, continued down the Mist Trail a mile to the Happy Isle
183106 - trailhead. Very pleased that the trail for the final descent is
183107 - paved. Along the way, there was a rise in grade, but somehow made it
183108 - up okay focusing on the "drink."
183110 - ..
183111 - Totally dark when the street was finally reached. Planned to call
183112 - Kathy for a ride, but there was a shuttle bus at Happy Isle stop #16
183113 - across a bridge about 100 yards away. Started running, but the bus
183114 - took off. Ran into the middle of the street waving my arms for the
183115 - bus to stop. The driver stopped and let me on - a joyous moment.
183117 - ..
183118 - Seemed like it took forever to get from stop #16, to the end of the
183119 - line at stop #21, then back to stop #8 at Yosemite Lodge (see
183120 - Yosemite Valley Shuttle System map...
183122 - http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/upload/valleyshuttle.pdf
183124 - ..
183125 - Not only do people leave and board the bus at each stop, for some
183126 - reason the driver waited at several stops 5 - 10 minutes, sometimes
183127 - just talking to fellow staffers. Was glad to be sitting, except legs
183128 - began to cramp, so had to shuffel them beneath the seat in front.
183132 - ..
183133 - Recovery Half Dome Hike
183135 - When the bus finally arrived about 1940, thankfully, Kathy was waiting
183136 - at the stop with the "Drink" in the Bubba Keg, which had been a main
183137 - focus the last several miles coming down, along with deep resolve
183138 - never to step on another rock the rest of my life. ref SDS 0 KF5I
183140 - ..
183141 - Kathy asked about dinner?
183143 - ..
183144 - Did not feel like eating anything, despite having eaten only a few
183145 - bites of Cherrios the entire day.
183147 - ..
183148 - Had to walk upstairs to the room. Next time will order accomodations
183149 - on the ground floor.
183151 - ..
183152 - Layed down on the bed for about 10 minutes. Finally undressed.
183154 - ..
183155 - Miracle - cut foot was not any worse, so bandage this morning held up,
183156 - reported above. ref SDS 0 NM6V
183160 - ..
183161 - Took a long shower.
183163 - ..
183164 - In bed about 2130. Discussed the hike and drank several refills of
183165 - Bubba Keg.
183167 - ..
183168 - Couldn't sleep. Body hurt all night - felt exhausted of all
183169 - sustenance, like the descent from Vernal Falls, earlier per above.
183170 - ref SDS 0 KF5I
183172 - [On 130919 0630 next day rested, body recovered, and hungry
183173 - so started with big breakfast at Food Court. ref SDS 33
183174 - 5G7I
183176 - ..
183177 - [On 130919 0630 continue Ross' tradition of celebration
183178 - drink on reaching Half Dome, at Awhanhee hotel, ref SDS 32
183179 - V66N, then had a steak dinner to underscore celebration.
183180 - ref SDS 32 PC5H
183182 - ..
183183 - Got up about 0230, and took another shower for about 30 minutes.
183185 - ..
183186 - Slept until 0600, reported in another record the next day. 130919
183187 - 0630, ref SDS 32 5G7I
183191 - ..
183192 - Assessment Future Considerations Next Half Dome Hike
183194 - As reported, coming down from Nevada Falls to Vernal Falls, and then
183195 - further down to the wood foot bridge, felt like never doing this hike
183196 - again. ref SDS 0 KF5I On reflection, experience today indicates a few
183197 - things to plan for another hike...
183199 - 1. Preperation was adequate, per report of no cramps, ref SDS 0
183200 - A59N Legs and breathing recovered quickly from periodic
183201 - fatigue with few minutes rest, indicating hiking the past year,
183202 - and increased training the past 2 months was helpful, including
183203 - doing Mt Diablo on 130720 0700, ref SDS 25 318I. Increased
183204 - training with loss of weight - about 15 pounds was also helpful
183205 - today, reported in case study on 120101 0900. ref SDS 15 TQ6N
183206 - Might do some pushups and pullups for arm strength to handle
183207 - the cables. ref SDS 0 8O7H
183209 - ..
183210 - 2. Body held up well - routine Glucosamine Chondroitin taken this
183211 - morning, ref SDS 0 PD8F, fully protected left knee climbing
183212 - Half Dome. Seems like a miracle. There was never pain going
183213 - up nor coming down from advanced degenerative arthritis,
183214 - diagnosed at Kaiser on 000124 0830. ref SDS 11 HU5O No
183215 - shoulder, arm, nor back problems - pretty lucky. Fortunate, as
183216 - well, that cut on left foot instep did not get worse nor cause
183217 - pain during the hike. ref SDS 0 B56P Difficulty sleeping from
183218 - general body discomfort the first night, ref SDS 0 K66L, was
183219 - likely due to dehydration.
183221 - ..
183222 - 3. Leave earlier, depart from trailhead at 0600 in order to avoid
183223 - danger of hiking down the trail in the dark, per above.
183224 - ref SDS 0 KF5I This means will have to drive to the path for
183225 - the Mist trial, rather than take the shuttle bus, because the
183226 - earliest bus is at 0700, per above. ref SDS 0 ZW9K
183228 - ..
183229 - 4. Gloves with good grip, found in research, above, ref SDS 0
183230 - 2Y4H, will make doing the cables a lot easier. ref SDS 0 LQ8K
183232 - [On 140403 1254 bought 1 pair gloves locally at Harbor
183233 - Freight Tools for $5. ref SDS 46 6U5I
183235 - ..
183236 - [On 140403 1254 bought 2 more pair gloves from Seattle
183237 - Marine for $6 plus shipping. ref SDS 47 RE5I
183239 - ..
183240 - 5. Two bottles of water will work better than just 1, ref SDS 0
183241 - YI6I; Cherrios worked well for food and energy, but may try
183242 - "energy bars" and something to restore electrolytes designed
183243 - for this type of hiking. Better nutrition may make the return
183244 - hike easier on the body post hike, per above. ref SDS 0 K66Y
183246 - ..
183247 - 6. Take small backpack to store water, food, and coat after it
183248 - gets hot. ref SDS 0 WT88
183250 - [On 140403 1254 bought Fox Outdoor Compact Modular
183251 - Hydration Backpack, Black 56-351, for $42. ref SDS 48 T63G
183252 - Will have to test this with hikes around town before taking
183253 - on Half Dome hike. ref SDS 46 TQ8J
183255 - ..
183256 - 7. Didn't need bandaids, but will take them anyway.
183258 - ..
183259 - 8. Eating a lot of spagetti the night before, reported on 130917
183260 - 0830, ref SDS 31 VY5Q, was likely helpful, so will do something
183261 - like this again.