Half Dome – Yosemite Musing
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This from Park Sources (Will all visitors be issued hard hats when checking into Curry?)
At approximately 3:40 a.m. on July 1, 2011, numerous visitors and employees in eastern Yosemite Valley heard a sharp cracking sound, followed by 20-30 seconds of rumbling – the unmistakable sound of a rockfall.
Subsequent investigation revealed the source of the rockfall to be from the upper west (upper right when viewed from Stoneman Meadow) portion of the scar left by the October 8, 2008 rockfall. The rockfall consisted of a rectangular block approximately 10 m (33 feet) tall, 2.5 m (8 feet) wide, and 1 m (3 feet) thick, for a total volume of about 25 cubic meters; this translates to a weight of about 75 tons. The block free-fell for about 200 m (660 feet) and landed on the prominent ledge above Curry Village along which the old Ledge Trail traversed. Rock debris continued down this ledge, but stopped on the talus slope behind Curry Village. There were no reports of injuries or structural damage associated with this event.
A specific triggering mechanism for this rockfall is not known, but the failed block was very likely destabilized by the October 8, 2008 rockfall. Be aware that rockfall areas can continue to be active for weeks, months, and even years after a major rockfall event.
Unrelated thought worth quoting: “Have you ever been to Electric Ladyland? The magic carpet waits for you so don’t you be late” – Jimi Hendrix
*MrHalfDome ™ – Rick Deutsch – www.HikeHalfDome.com