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1,129 votes

Half Dome

California 95389 USA

Free to Visit
  • Independent
  • Credit Cards
    not Accepted
  • Pet Friendly
  • Not Wheelchair
  • No Public
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Hazardous Conditions

Hazardous conditions reported nearby. Confirm availability and take caution.

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“Towering over Yosemite”

Half Dome is a granite dome in Yosemite National Park, located in northeastern Mariposa County, California, at the eastern end of Yosemite Valley — possibly Yosemite's most familiar rock formation. The granite crest rises more than 4,737 ft above the valley floor. One of the most stunning features is this 40-foot-long sliver of granite on Half Dome, named the Thank God Ledge. It's the only way to get beyond the Visor, a massive roof that looms over the Regular Northwest Face route. Most people crawl, there are several people who prefer to walk it, face out, since that’s “cooler.” It takes only about 30 seconds to make it across the ledge, and technically requires no climbing skills, but staring down at 1800 feet in the air isn't everyone's cup of tea. Half Dome is nearly as whole as it ever was. The impression from the valley floor that this is a round dome which has lost its northwest half is an illusion. From Washburn Point, Half Dome can be seen as a thin ridge of rock oriented northeast-southwest, with its southeast side almost as steep as its northwest side except for the very top. Although the trend of this ridge, as well as that of Tenaya Canyon, is probably controlled by master joints, 80 percent of the northwest "half" of the original dome may well still be there.  Half Dome was originally called "Tis-sa-ack," meaning Cleft Rock in the language of the local Native Americans. Tis-sa-ack is also the name of the fourth route on the formation, ascended by Royal Robbins and Don Peterson over eight days in October 1969. Tis-sa-ack is the name of a mother from a native legend. The face seen in Half Dome is supposed to be hers. Tis-sa-ack is the name of a Mono Lake Paiute Indian girl in the Yosemite Native American legend. John Muir referred to the peak as "Tissiack". In 1988, Half Dome was featured on a 25 cent United States postage stamp. An image of Half Dome, along with John Muir and the California Condor, appears on the California State quarter, released in January 2005. Starting October 2010, an image of Half Dome is included on the new revised California drivers license in the top right-hand corner. Half Dome is also an element or inspiration of various company and organization logos, including that of The North Face, Sierra Designs, & Mountain Khakis outdoor product companies, the Sierra Club environmental group and the Sierra Entertainment game studio..

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Reviewed by

  • 1 Review
  • 4 Helpful
May 04, 2014

My husband and I and two friends of ours hiked Half Dome in a day last Memorial Day weekend in 2013; it took us about 12 hrs. Most amazing experience ever! Def come prepared with lots of water and snacks to keep your energy up and of course a camera to catch that exciting moment you get to the top of the cables!

4 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • Road Warrior
  • 401 Reviews
  • 292 Helpful
September 25, 2014
Rated 5.0

Very special experience for everyone in the family!!! One of a kind and challenging!

Park your car at the bottom, take your permits from below, and just follow the trails which are very well cared and guide you correctly to the top without a problem. We went there early so we did not stack at the crowded lines that followed afterwards.

We had everything with us, such as a great amount of snacks and water , and although we got so tired after many hours of hiking we finally arrived at the end!! We felt like kings ruling the world!! Fantastic!

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • 1 Review
  • 0 Helpful
July 27, 2020 must make a reservation before entering the park.

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Reviewed by
Dave Logan

  • Tour Guide
  • 10 Reviews
  • 45 Helpful
December 17, 2014
Rated 5.0

Absolutely awesome! I've done this hike over 20 times and it continues to be one of my favorites. Doing it all in one day is great if you're a pretty strong hiker but the best way is to camp in Little Yosemite Valley for a couple of nights and do the Half Dome summit on your layover day. You'll get to the top way before the majority of the day hikers from Yosemite Valley and it's a much better experience. It can be an absolute zoo on the cables by early afternoon.

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Reviewed by

  • 13 Reviews
  • 7 Helpful
November 01, 2014
Rated 5.0

This is a bucket list kinda place. Plan on being amazed and soak it up as pictures cannot really do it justice. Absolutely AWSOME!!! My son did a lot of bouldering and we just really soaked it up. Plan on staying although we just did a one day. We will be back!!!

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Half Dome

95389 USA
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  • Parking
  • Pets Allowed
  • Restrooms
  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Outdoor Seating
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Parking, Dining

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