NEED TO KNOW
LOCATION Half Dome is in Yosemite National Park in California
HEIGHT 4,730 ft (1,440 m)
Around 5 miles (8 km)
Jan: 35°F (2°C); Apr: 50°F (10°C); Jul: 69°F (21°C); Oct: 53°F (12°C)
Half Dome, the exquisite granite sentinel at the eastern end of Yosemite Valley, has become something of an icon in California, its image having found its way onto postcards, coins, and several company logos. Even in Yosemite, which is home to more granite domes than anywhere else on earth, Half Dome cuts a commanding profile.
Millions of years ago, glaciers undercut a much larger dome that stood here, weakening and eroding it to expose the sheer rock face we see today. Once declared “perfectly inaccessible,” the rock’s summit can today be reached by handrails and wooden planks placed in the stone. The ascent is one of the most popular hikes in the park.
Getting There Yosemite is a 4-hour drive to the east of San Francisco in California. Half Dome is located at the head of Yosemite Valley.
When to Go Half Dome can be viewed from Yosemite Valley all year round.
Climbing on the cable track is only available from mid-May to mid-October.