The San Francisco Chronicle ran a front page story today, Danger on the Dome about the dangerous hike up Half Dome in Yosemite.
You can read a partial account of my recent hike up Half Dome and thoughts about the matter in my blog story Snakes and Ladders. Another post, Star Vortex, includes additional links to all my recent stories about Half Dome.
There are various conflicting values at play here. It’s sad to find people putting themselves in harm’s way because they don’t understand wilderness travel and risks. But the wilderness is supposed to be a bastion of freedom, and I’m opposed to unnecessary restrictions.
All that said, I don’t see why anyone would want to subject themselves to the zoo on the cables on a weekend. It’s not what I consider a wilderness experience (and the crowding adds greatly to the danger). My hike shows that with a little creative trip planning it is perfectly possible to visit Half Dome safely, avoiding the crowds.
Here’s the moon shadow cast by Half Dome from its summit: