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Nice walk, but bring bug spray.

hiking
2 days ago

So maybe we cheated a bit on this, and instead of trekking up from Yosemite Valley floor (y'alls that do it: mad props! that's beast mode hiking right there!), we camped out at the Little Yosemite Valley, and trekked up to the rock at sunset to have a nice view with our dinner...
it is NOT an easy hike... esp. the last part (subdome and the cables). by the time we got to the rock, it was about an hour and 15 minutes to sunset, and thank god there were only three people on the cables coming down, otherwise, it was just our group of 6. i don't know if i'd be able to do the cables if there were a ton of people on them... it is sketchy as heck. do invest in good grippy shoes and super grippy gloves. you'll thank both later. our guide gave us a good advice (it goes esp. for those who have the fear of heights): don't look around, concentrate on the next plank in-front of you, and go from plank to plank in counts of five... take all the rest you need.
THE VIEWS ARE WORTH IT!!!
my personal suggestion for this hike would be to break it up... trek up to LYV, spend the night or rest up... and then continue with the trek up to Half Dome, or do it the next day. :)

hiking
2 days ago

Great hike! Did it 10/14 (first weekend that cables are down). Set off at sunrise, up the Mist trail and back down JMT. Took around 7 hours total with no traffic up to summit. I was actually expecting the hike up to be more strenuous since I’ve just started hiking, but it was absolutely fine. Most tiring bit are the stairs up to sub dome. I had perfect conditions for this and it wasn’t too hot so I survived fine on 2l of water. Saw mother bear and 2 cubs on the way back too!

hiking
2 days ago

Read a bunch of reviews and feel like most are somewhat exaggerated. Did this hike in about 9.5 hours, and you definitely want to start at about 2am. I started at 2:30am by myself, first time hiking in the dark with an REI 20$ headlamp, and what an experience. Couldn’t see but could hear the water falls roaring, and the night critters were frequent on the trail. The headlamp did its job and being up on the cables at sunrise was magical, as well as the dark night sky on the way up. Going down was no problem until vernal/nevada fall, when the trail was packed with people, without much regard for others on the trail. For this I probably would have went JMT, but I wanted to see the things I couldn’t see on the way up. Also the sub dome is not that grueling, and it really only lasts about 20 minutes to the base of the cables.

Didn’t do much training for this, did Four Mile Trail, Eagle Peak, clouds rest, and MT. Hoffman spread out in weeks time. Took 30 liters of water with me and a water filter, to cut down on weight and didn’t have to use the filter (starting in the dark keeps the heat down). Overall awesome experience, happy to do it. Saw loads of people going up as I was going down so start early before 5am if you want to miss that, as there was no waiting on the cables going up or down, which made it easier.

The view from the top is the payoff for taking this trail!

hiking
3 days ago

INCREDIBLE! Started at 9am at the trailhead, and very thankful we did, as on the way down there were a TON of people heading up. The falls are beautiful even at their low levels. Saw a momma bear and her babies at the top of Vernal Falls beside Emerald Pool, and encountered them 2 more times, once between the falls and a third time at the top of Nevada Falls about 30yds away and they startled me pretty badly! Took the John Muir trail back down which was beautiful. Rested for about 2 hours total at the falls, plus the time to wait for the bears to cross our path the second time and not disturb them, it took us 6 hours total. Strenuous, and I could see it be much harder when there’s a lot of mist, but SO worth it. Will definitely be doing it again!

Wonderful views all the way. Highly recommend taking the John Muir Trail back down to avoid the knee grinding steps of the Mist Trail. We saw some juvenile bears pigging out in one of the treetops.

on Sentinel Dome Trail

hiking
4 days ago

Oh my gosh. This hike was amazing. Went there to see the sunset with my girlfriend and it was so worth the challenge it took to get there. It's quick but if you're more sedentary, the last half mile will kick your butt a bit on the way up. That being said, we aren't super hikers but we only took about two 1-minute breaks and were able to make the climb. Just take your time and you'll make it. It's not terrifyingly difficult, just a good workout for the middle quarter of the whole trip. At just a few hundred feet shorter than Half Dome's elevation, it's literally a much better all-around view than Glacier Point, in my opinion, and only 10% as much people because of the climb. I've also done Taft Point, and while I think the view from Sentinel is more grand and awe inspiring, Taft Point will give you a similarly beautiful scene for much less effort. You won't get to see Half Dome though, so choose wisely.

hiking
4 days ago

Nice to have done it but the views aren’t the best. You can’t see Half Dome from Half Dome.

We did the Grizzly Giant (medium) loop. It was stunning and well maintained. The new parking lot was easy and the shuttles were on a steady schedule. This is an easy hike (really a walk) and we did the entire loop vs turning around. As most turn around, the return was really quiet and lovely. Remember we did this in mid October on a Friday.

hiking
7 days ago

Great view!! I think this trail and at the top of Sentinel Dome has a better view than Glacier Point. It was so cool being up in the cloud. This hike is very short and easy. I would definitely recommend this to people who like views.

Amazing!!! Such a cool bucket list hike. It’s the cables that make it so unique and such a cool experience. Took us about 10 hours round trip. Our feet were hurting at the end and we were definitely tired. Started at 6:15a and found easy parking in the parking lot closest to the trailhead. We were surprised that the parking lot was so full. Met a lot of nice and enthusiastic hikers. Had an amazing day! Can’t believe we hiked half dome!!!! We won our permits unexpectedly for the last day that the cables were up. Pretty lucky!

8 days ago

Awesome hike and definitely a bucket list item. Did it October 6th, took under 11 hours, absolutely gorgeous day and the views are killer as always. Took Mist trail up and John Muir trail back- though the JMT is longer by a mile the grade is much easier on the knees going down.
- while Mist trail is hard especially between Vernal and Nevada Falls, in my opinion Sub-Dome is the hardest part. It lasts forever or so it feels and the cables look easier in comparison.
- second time doing it, not sure I'll do it again but that's what I said 6 years ago so we'll see.

hiking
8 days ago

Okay, so I would definitely recommend training for this intensely. I only did one or two trails that were nowhere near this incline and it took me forever to do this. I am actually pretty apologetic to my friends for adding on extra time, but I didn't want to get injured, and I already fell coming down (no injuries other than a bruised ankle of the tiniest degree.) We started at the closest campground parking lot and walked to Half Dome through Vernal Falls and Nevada and the Valley.

The whole trip took us 16 hours! We started at 4 AM and took a lot of breaks, spent two hours at the top of the Dome, maybe 40 minutes climbing to Subdome, 20-30 minutes climbing the cables, and took even more breaks coming back down because it was worse and really difficult. Our 18.4 mile hike ended at about 7:35 PM! (48-60F weather)

I took 7L of water, which was excessive and probably why I slowed my friend group down a lot. I can get altitude sickness, so I was prepared to drink and pee a lot on the way, but my friends each drank 1.5L when they ran empty and they took 5L each. We hiked the last day the cables were up 10/9/18.

I saw people going down the cables two different ways. Do whatever works best for you. My friend had to go backwards down the cables, because her knees are bad and she had brace on one. She felt that it was easier to lean into the mountain and look down at her legs for the next purchase of rock while she was grabbing onto one side of the rope. However, I felt that I had more control facing outwards just like walking downstairs. Both of my hands were on both cables and I clenched and unclenched my fists to lower myself down with my legs and let gravity help as I got to each wood block at the stanchions. My backpack was still quite heavy from water, and I felt better balanced that way.


I recommend:

5-6L of water unless you have a filtration system to get water at the last water area before the Dome

BRIGHT Headlamp - I got a cheap one with the highest reviews on Amazon for $26

Hiking poles - They saved me coming down. I didn't order early enough on Amazon, but my Amazon ones were $25. I had to buy Black Diamond for like $100. They aren't for everyone, but I almost slipped on the rock stairs coming down the last few miles over 10 times and they helped. My arms, back, and chest are sore, but at least I didn't break anything.

Hiking shoes with treads - Oboz. I bought them new and didn't even have to break them in; I saw someone going up the cables in skater shoes and feared for his life. He couldn't even stand after 5 stancions and I told him he should go back down.

Gloves - You need ones for the cables. Some people use those thick garden gloves form Home Depot, cheaper than rock climbing gloves. Please don't leave them at subdome "for people to use." The rangers ask us not to. If you want to give your gloves away, just ask people you pass going backwards if they want some. My friend did and a stranger gratefully accepted.

Snacks - Clif Gels/Gu/Honey Stingers. Salt tabs, electrolyte tabs, a bottle of gatorade if you don't have that to sip on during the trip. (You nee to have equal water and electrolyte intake. Do not just bring all gatorade. You will dehydrate faster.) Make sure to bring a protein and carb filled snack for every hour. You WILL NOT make it without this.

Pickle Juice - THE BRAND not just the stuff in the pickle jar - I recommend this for cramps. It saved me and my friends. Maybe 2-3 small bottles for each person. They are really cheap and they work wonders. Drink before the hike to prevent cramps, but honestly, they can take cramps away during an onset too within a few minutes.

Layers of clothing - check the weather, but my feather down vest was a great help, along with my sun shaded hat to protect the back of my neck

Hand Warmers - trust me, this rocked for the beginning and end of my hike

Harness + gigantic caribiner - I saw several people have this and it made me wish I had this for peace of mind. Safety net going up and down, but you need to figure out if your gloves are easy enough to use with them while you hook and unhook each time you meet a stanchion pole WHILE you hold/balance your body.

Phone, Go Pro, external battery - some people get signal (I didn't), but your camera is so worth this view. Sometimes phones will die rather quickly on this hike, so have a backup battery. Pictures to remember the feeling of triumph!

Nice trail about 1 mile one way, lots of rocks to walk around at some parts and the last .2 miles is a steep hike up the side of the dome. Definitely worth it, the view from the top is incredible.

October is a great time to visit Yosemite. Very few crowds, perfect weather, just beautiful. The Mariposa Grove has been re-imagined to protect it from the millions of visitors. They have done a phenomenal job! The free shuttle from the parking area to the grove is fast and efficient. We hiked the Mariposa Trail to Wawona Point. The maps say the elevation gain is 1200 feet, but the trail is wide and gently sloping making for an easy trip. It is well with the effort as the views are amazing! Also, once we were out of the lower grove, the crowds thinned and we were nearly alone. Just imagine walking among the oldest living things on earth (2000 years old!) in the quiet of the grove. Stunning.There are many variations to the hike that you can do. We spent about 4 hours and covered most of the highlights.

on Half Dome Trail

9 days ago

Scary, long but totally amazing!!!!

Great trail with wonderful sites. We stayed mainly on the lower trail for our 3 year old and we had a great time. Went in early October, great weather without a huge crowd.

This is a fairly easy hike with 360 views at the top. Great view of the valley and falls. I know there are many quality hikes at Yosemite, but the payback for reasonable effort is outstanding.

hiking
10 days ago

Half Dome is worth doing. I work out 2/3 days a week and didn't get in as many prep hikes as I had planned. I mainly walked my dogs 2 times a week for 3 miles at a time for about a month. I wish I had prepped properly. BUT I would still do this hike even though I am not as fit as I would like to have been. I went October 5th. Weather was great and the path was not overly crowded. We started at 8am because it rained the day before and we wanted to be sure the dome would be dry when we got there. In hindsight I would have gone up at 6am as originally planned. Total time took 14 hours from happy isles. The shortest version of this hike is up and down the vernal route which is over 16 miles round trip, not sure why all trails says this hike is 14 miles. If you get stuck in the dark coming down and went up the mist trail take the mist trail, it's better to go out the way you returned. It would be too much work to take muir trail out in the dark if you aren't familiar with the route. There were people on the mist trail in the dark and they got confused on the trail down between Nevada falls down to Vernal falls. Don't just follow people on the way out they may get you off track. Pay attention to the trail and don't veer off just because others do and you should be fine. If you plan to take the mist trail down poles will help you a lot. I took 3 liters of water which was a good amount I had a water filter just in case, but didn't need it. In the summer a filter might be a good idea so you can lighten your load. Pack light!!! You will be happy you did. Must haves head lamp, painkillers, bandaids, shoes with grip, gloves that cover your fingers and have good grip, and good snacks. Have patience and take breaks you need on the way up, it is the hike of perpetual almost there. I hated going up Vernal but going down Nevada sucked as well because the steps down slope a bit which isn't the best for your balance. The steps on the subdome can be frustrating but once you finish the subdome the cables don't seem so bad. Just take your time going up the cables and yes facing half dome going down the cables is the best way to go down. Be nice to your fellow hikers we're all in this together.

This is actually my favorite hike in Yosemite. Most of the trail has a decent incline, but there is one section right before you reach the dome that is pretty steep. Once you are at the dome, climb the rocks to the top and you are rewarded with an outstanding view of Yosemite Valley, half dome and the Sierra Mountain range. It is beautiful. I prefer to do this one in the fall since the tourists are mostly gone, but even with the tourists in the summer, it is worth the hike. Make sure to bring enough water as Yosemite is very hot in the summer months. Also, I wore hiking boots and was glad when I was coming down. There are lots of loose gravel and slick granite to lose your balance on. If you are visiting, I would make this a must!

Beautiful intro to Yosemite for me! A nice variety of challenges and resting points. Some of the inclines pushed me pretty hard but the rewards to follow (getting to the top of the falls) made everything so worth it. Took us 7.5 hours, including a few well-deserved naps in pretty, sunny places. :)

Amazing and intimidating till you do it.
Beautiful scenery and terrain !!
Definitely need to train 8 weeks before..
Once a week hike and once a week stepper at the gym .
MAKE. SURE TO CARRY THREE OR MORE LITERS OF WATER.
Wouldn’t have done it without amazing group of friends.

Great trail! All up hill at first so heading back is easy. There were literally thousands of lady bugs more towards the middle to end parts of the trail. There are plenty of waterfalls to see and it is almost completely shaded. Heading back we ran the trail.

Loved this hike!! I would highly recommend going all the way to Nevada Falls and taking John Muir down! A total of 9.4 miles! Beautiful from top to bottom! We saw a huge bear along the path as well! Amazing, solid, strenuous hike worth every step!!

Cables looked intimidating but it was a fun hike. I agree sub dome is the hardest part of hike. I used the gloves that was recommended and it worked out perfect

Great day hike. I guess you can walk down or walk up. We walked up. It will challenge you but the beauty and peacefulness it nice. Go hike a mountain.

Very difficult. Steps up are no joke. Take your time but the views at the top of each fall are very good. I recommend going earlier rather than later because the trail gets dry crowded.

Incredible waterfalls. Did this in February and they were flowing like mad.

Some amazing views, even when the waterfalls were at a low level. We even got super lucky and saw a bear and her two cubs at the top of Vernal falls! There were less people as the trail went on, start early and avoid the crowds at the start.

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