Half Dome – Yosemite Musing
Columbus Day means the last day for hiking up Half Dome. If you didn’t do it this year, keep alert for the process for 2011. Odds are that permits will be required every day, but we shall see. On the good side, permits days were actually very light. Only about 200 of the available slots were used. Look for a rise in the “fee’ from $1.50 this year to something more of a deterrent to no-shows next year. People who have to spend $20 or so will be less likely to buy an overage and then toss them. And don’t think the NPS will keep the cables up a few more days since the current weather is good. They need to schedule crews to get up and remove the poles and boards, then store them away. You can still do the hike but you wil not be able to safely get to the top. Although the cables are physically still there and are NOT taken down, they are used by trained climbers coming down after their big wall summit. Two women hikers died in 2006/7 by slipping while rappelling using just the cable.
In other news, last week CHP officers examined 30 commercial buses that travel into the park. Those behemoths carry international tourist s from gateway towns into the park then clog spots like Tunnel View and Bridleveil Fall. Out of the 30 inspections conducted, 18 buses were found to be safe, with no violations, and were released without citation. A total of 12 minor “fix-it” tickets were written. Of those 12, three were for logbook failures. Another two buses were taken temporarily out of service for logbook violations. No buses were taken out of service for mechanical deficiencies.
Unrelated thought worth quoting: “An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.” – Henry David Thoreau
*MrHalfDome – Rick Deutsch – www.HikeHalfDome.com