Snake Dike on Half Dome Yosemite National Park 2001

Morning preparationsAfter a night behind the rockpiles, we rise early and pack the climbing gear.

Nevada FallsAfter hiking up the Mist Trail and past Vernal Falls we look back at Nevada Falls.

Snowfield crossingHiking cross country now we cross a snow field in the shadow of a smaller granite dome.  My legs got a few scratches as we do not travel along any trails.

Water in Lost Lake, swamp reallyWe see a landmark called Lost Lake.  Lots of green in this marshy lake.

Route start visibleOur hiking ends when we get to the start of the rock climbing route.  No one is in front of us, a nice situation for such a popular route.

Slope visibleThe steepness is apparent in this shot of Rick.

On the dikeCan you see the rock feature that gives the route it's name.  It is a seam of rock that has much different properties and quality than the more uniform, smooth and mostly featureless monolith.

The dike is wonderful for climbingClimbing the dike is like climbing a ladder.   But the fixed anchors are very far apart.  This creates a situation called runout.  Lots of runout means the leader may have a long way to fall before the rope starts to arrest his fall.  Kind of spooky, but not really deadly.

Self PortraitLots of time for hokey pics.  That me and Greg.

ClimberGreg on lead.  Rick and Greg alternate leading and I just sort of stay in the middle, really easy for me.

Me and RickHere is Rick.

Two lead climbersThis is Greg and Rick.

Me on friction sectionA shot of me off the dike and onto a smooth section of granite.  I asked for this shot to be taken as I casually wave, I am actually pretty wound up inside at that point.

Summit of Half DomeAfter walking up a long way after the climbing we pose for a shot.  Lots of people on top, look behind us in this photo.  Then it's a long fast hike down, with a pause at the Emerald Pool.   A very memorable day and lots of fun.