Ask Me: Expert Tips For Hiking Yosemite’s Half Dome

February 28, 2018  |  In Ask Me, Backpacking, Hiking, National Park Adventures   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   1 Comment

Hi Michael!

You gave me amazing advice a while back about hiking and backpacking with my toddler. We hiked the Mist Trail in Yosemite to the top of Vernal Fall and it was the best hike we have done so far. Now my husband and I have decided to make Half Dome our next challenge. As soon as I saw Half Dome, I knew I wanted to be on top of that rock. I want to ask you about tips for a long trip (we plan on making it a three-day backpacking trip), gear, training, and just how to do it right.

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One Response to Ask Me: Expert Tips For Hiking Yosemite’s Half Dome

  1. Tyler from   |  March 19, 2015 at 10:34 am


    Great summary of Half Dome. I also hiked in Yosemite with my mother, but she wanted no part of Half Dome! The cables spooked her, not to mention the 4800′ of elevation gain. This August I did Half Dome as a day hike. Photos and a write up are here:

    One note I wanted to add for people day-hiking is that any extra pack weight really adds up. I lugged my large DSLR to the top (and was glad I did) but I minimized the rest of my gear so that I basically wasn’t aware that I was wearing a pack.

    The best way to save pack weight is to not carry as much water. My advice is to plan to refill your water bladder/bottles in Little Yosemite Valley where there is easy access to the Merced River. You just need to treat the water in some way (filter, iodine, etc.). Instead of carrying all of the water you need from the start, you can save 5 pounds or so by refilling after you have finished the steepest section of the hike.

    That hike is amazing! Anyone doing it will have a blast.


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