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Climbing Half Dome
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By Rocksalots
Jul 30, 2012

I don't want to fight the crowds the whole way up and down. Can I rap the cables?


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By Marc H
From Lafayette, CO
Jul 30, 2012
The Cathedral Spires in RMNP, left to right: Stiletto, Sharkstooth, Forbidden Tower, Petit Grepon, The Saber, The Foil, The Moon & The Jackknife.

It's possible to get outside the cables and keep one hand on them while you walk down. It's much faster than rapping. Plus you get to scare to hell out of a few unsuspecting hikers as you zip past them.

P.S. I think your thread title should be "Descending Half Dome" ;-)


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By Unassigned User
Jul 30, 2012

Have you been to HalfDome before? I have never been there, never hiked up it even, but I do know that one trick to avoid crowds on the way down the cables involves stepping outside and clipping a sling to your harness and then to the cables. This way you are protected and don't have to push and shove your way down.

As for avoiding the crowds up, not sure what you mean by that...


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By FrankPS
From Atascadero, CA
Jul 30, 2012

Yes, attach your rap line to the cables to rappel the Northwest Face. Not many people do this, so you are sure to avoid the crowds. Tie knots in the end of your ropes, as this is a long rappel.


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By Rocksalots
Jul 30, 2012

Ok So I won't be using my rappel device (figure eight) but just clipping in to the cables?

HOw do you avoid the tourists while climbing? From what I have read it is runout, I don't want some tourist scaring me while I am way out...


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By FrankPS
From Atascadero, CA
Jul 30, 2012

Rocksalots wrote:
Ok So I won't be using my rappel device (figure eight) but just clipping in to the cables? HOw do you avoid the tourists while climbing? From what I have read it is runout, I don't want some tourist scaring me while I am way out...


The key is for you to scare the tourists more than they scare you. "Scare early, scare often." Wearing a Halloween mask while climbing should do the trick.

Seriously though, are you ready for this? I don't even know what route you are doing, but you will be hundreds of feet from the tourists.


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By Finn the Human
From The Land of Ooo
Jul 30, 2012
Mathematical!

FrankPS wrote:
Seriously though, are you ready for this? I don't even know what route you are doing, but you will be hundreds of feet from the tourists.


I'm with Frank. You sound kinda sketch ball.


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By David Lee
Jul 30, 2012
Cave belay station anchor. Pretty sweet.

SirRocksALot is a sketchball climber for sure.


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By Rocksalots
Jul 30, 2012

Sorry for the confusion, I did not know there was more than one route on Half Dome. I was wanting to climb the Cables route, I had a friend who told me it was really easy as long as I was in shape.

Sorry for being unfamiliar with the route.


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By bag
Jul 30, 2012

There are numerous guidebooks with route info on Half Dome, not to mention the route database on this website. Perhaps you should do some research and then check back with more specific questions.

The 2 super-classic and popular routes on Half Dome are not in view of the tourists who came up the cables (they can look down on you from the summit if you're on the RR of the NW face, but you'll be too busy to notice).


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By FrankPS
From Atascadero, CA
Jul 30, 2012

Rocksalots wrote:
Sorry for the confusion, I did not know there was more than one route on Half Dome. I was wanting to climb the Cables route, I had a friend who told me it was really easy as long as I was in shape. Sorry for being unfamiliar with the route.


Rocksalot,

Therein lies the confusion - your use of the word, "climbing." When you are actually "hiking." There are numerous technical climbing routes on Half Dome, but only one hiking route with cables.

Even though I've never done Half Dome, I'm quite sure you don't want to haul a rope with you on the hike just so you can rap the cable route. If you are really worried, wear a harness and have a couple of runners and lockers for attaching yourself to the cables. Have fun.


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By kennoyce
From Layton, UT
Jul 30, 2012
Climbing at the Gallery in Red Rocks

Rocksalots wrote:
Sorry for the confusion, I did not know there was more than one route on Half Dome. I was wanting to climb the Cables route, I had a friend who told me it was really easy as long as I was in shape. Sorry for being unfamiliar with the route.


Just FYI, you don't climb the cables route, you hike it. If you really are talking about climbing half dome, you'll do it via one of the many other routes and will be well away from the tourests who are hiking the cables route.


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By Princess Mia
From Vail
Jul 30, 2012
Chillin' at City of Rocks

Make a real adventure out of it and climb the cables route and rap the visor.....yeah that would be the best way to do it. Absolutely no crowd on the rap.....


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By Unassigned User
Jul 30, 2012

Rocksalots wrote:
Sorry for the confusion, I did not know there was more than one route on Half Dome. I was wanting to climb the Cables route, I had a friend who told me it was really easy as long as I was in shape. Sorry for being unfamiliar with the route.


I am going to say you were wrong this time Jake and JLP. Looks like a total confused, uneducated n00b. Poor little fellow.


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By David Lee
Jul 30, 2012
Cave belay station anchor. Pretty sweet.

Snake Dike != Cables Route. Cables route is like hardly class III-. Steep climbing for sure and people have probably died or whatever, but you can sail up and away no problem.


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By Unassigned User
Jul 30, 2012

David Lee wrote:
Snake Dike != Cables Route. Cables route is like hardly class III-. Steep climbing for sure and people have probably died or whatever, but you can sail up and away no problem.


Cmon Dave I know you are a sport climber but I think you should still know the difference between Snake Hike and the Cables. Cables is way harder, you have to push through people while going up a steep slog. Pure misery.


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By csproul
From Rancho Cordova, CA
Jul 31, 2012
Summit of Wolf's Head with Pingora in the background

Go in the off season when the posts are removed and the cables are down. There were no crowds when I did it in October a few years back.


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