Yosemite, CA — Park officials project that recent storms may be to blame for a slide impacting one of Half Dome’s popular climbing routes.
A large flake of granite came off the northwest face of Half Dome some time overnight last Thursday, according to park climbing rangers, who, on Tuesday, surveyed the area where the rocks came crashing down and posted signs warning climbers.
Ranger Jodi Bailey explains, “We get a rock fall of about this size once a year here in the valley. It’s possible that the big storms toward the end of last week, the rain involved…may have been a trigger.”
The sheet of rock measured roughly 100 by 200 feet and was 800 cubic meters in volume, according to Bailey. She points out, “This does not impact the hiking route up the cables that most visitors are interested in using. It only affects a technical climbing route up the steep face of Half Dome.”
There have been no reports of injuries due to the slide. The Half Dome cables remain open to the public. Bailey adds, “From a distance you can’t tell that there’s anything different. Half Dome still looks like Half Dome. Even at the bottom, it’s a boulder field and you can’t pick out the new ones.” However, she shares, “If you’re up on the face of it… you can see it. So, from a distance most visitors are not going to notice anything.”