Half Dome – Yosemite Musing
To request, trade or give permits, Click HERE.
** Put your contact info on the request. **
Gang, Wow – April 1 was a real ZOO for those trying to get Half Dome permits. We had over 1,000 hits on the blog since then from people wanting to trade or request permits. There were even people who were giving them out. So it’s working. Now that the dust has settled, let’s talk about that day. I have mentioned some of this in my replies to COMMENTS but feel it’s worth chatting about again. Your 2 cents is appreciated.
1. Permits for most days were gone literally in seconds. I tried for July 2 and it was NOT AVAILABLE instantly. I’d guess that the entire month of July was booked in less than 4 minutes. But who had time to keep track? In any supply / demand situation there will be a lot of losers. Welcome to a world of 7 billion people. Oh well, “stuff” happens. Anyone ever try to buy Pink Floyd tickets or Burning Man tickets? Same Same. We don’t cry that those are unfair, we just live with it. Be ready for the next 3 ticket cycles:
May 1 for August trips
June 1 for September trips
August 1 for October trips
2. You may have seen the icons with the number of tickets available starting with 300 go down just before 7 am. I asked about this last month and was told that the “system” sees requests but does not allow purchase. They said it would be fixed, but rest assured no one got early access. All it takes is 75 people all requesting 4 permits each for a given day and boink – 300 are gone. How fast is YOUR internet connection? Recreation.gov is run by a contractor in New York state and they are not the sharpest pencils in the box. A few people told me they were advised that July permits were available on May 1. Bogus.
3. Some people think they can sneak up without a permit. I am not the Permit Police, so do what you want, but the Rangers at Sub Dome are from the Protection Division and are sworn Federal Law Enforcement officers. Here are the words from the NPS:
If you attempt to hike beyond the subdome or up the cables without a valid permit, a ranger will turn you away at or near the subdome. Additionally, you could face misdemeanor charges—up to a $5,000 fine and/or six months in jail.
4. The park prohibits selling the permits. Again their words:
This hiking permit is transferable, but cannot be resold or auctioned. Resale of this permit is a violation of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, section 1.6. You are allowed to give this permit to anyone else, but each permit can only be used once.
5. The NPS has done a lot in 2011 to communicate safety information about the hike. It is extremely strenuous and people have died falling off the cables. Don’t do it if you are unprepared, have fear of heights, suffer anxiety attacks or if bad weather is approaching. Do your part and have everyone in your party read this link <HERE>. We don’t need any more accidents.
6. If you have suggestions, while it’s a cathartic feeling to voice them here, you should communicate with the park if you really want anyone who matters listen. I suggest you sit down, write a letter and invest 47 cents for a stamp and send to: Don Neubacher, Superintendent Yosemite National Park, Attn: Half Dome Trail Permits, P.O. Box 577, Yosemite, CA 95389
7. If you wonder why the park is doing all this permit stuff… read the Half Dome Cables Modeling and Visitor Use Estimation Final Report <HERE> . Then read the Half Dome Stewardship Plan <HERE> and get involved. Don’t be a “poser” – if you want the cables to remain up and available do it. Or not.
Unrelated thought worth quoting: “Energy and persistence conquer all things.” -Benjamin Franklin
*MrHalfDome – Rick Deutsch – www.HikeHalfDome.com