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Wilderness permit

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Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 04:29PM
I'm planing 2 day half-dome hike on july 3-4. If I follow my schedule I should be in Happy Isles before noon. I can't make reservation for wilderness permit it's all booked two months ahead. Will it be possible to get wilderness permit around noon on july 3rd (tuesday)? What if I don't get one?
avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 04:57PM
Are you planning to get the permit on the say day you'll start hiking? If so, I'd say noon is too late (especially if you plan to camp in Little Yosemite Valley).

The holiday won't help either.

Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 05:15PM
>>>Are you planning to get the permit on the say day you'll start hiking?

That was the original plan (until I learned about wilderness permit).


Ok, so I will show up at Big Oak Flat Road (Highway 120) at the park entrance before 8 am. That should save me a spot. But if I still can't get a permit, is there a plan B for this kind of situation?

avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 05:29PM
Steel,
You will have to get the permit for Little Yosemite Valley at the wilderness center on the valley floor if you plan to get to Half Dome from the valley floor. If you are in line at 8AM the day before you start your hike you should be able to get a permit as one half of the alloted permits are first come first served.

You could also start your trip into Half Dome from Tanaya Lake via Clouds Rest and camp near the John Muir Trail and Half Dome junction. You might have an easier time getting a permit for the Tanaya Lake trail-head.





Old Dude
avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 06:08PM
mrcondron wrote:

> You could also start your trip into Half Dome from Tanaya Lake
> via Clouds Rest and camp near the John Muir Trail and Half Dome
> junction. You might have an easier time getting a permit for
> the Tanaya Lake trail-head.

You can also start from Glacier Point and use the Panorama Trail. But the quote for LYV may still apply.

avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 30, 2007 07:37PM
steel wrote:

> >>>Are you planning to get the permit on the say day you'll
> start hiking?
>
> That was the original plan (until I learned about wilderness
> permit).
>
>
> Ok, so I will show up at Big Oak Flat Road (Highway 120) at the
> park entrance before 8 am. That should save me a spot. But if I
> still can't get a permit, is there a plan B for this kind of
> situation?

I was at the Valley wilderness center just yesterday. I asked about how the first-come first-served permits work. I was informed that they give first "dibs" on the first-come first-served permits to the permit stations closest to the trailhead. If you want to do Happy Isles, you'll probably need to do so at the Valley wilderness center. I hear people start arriving at 5 AM or earlier, and some even sleep overnight waiting in line. I'm not sure exactly what they do, but I'd venture that a Happy Isles start would be limited to the Valley wilderness center for an hour or two after opening.

Since the first-come, first-served can be gotten the day before the start of the trip, showing up on July 3 will likely be a useless exercise. My guess is that the Happy Isles quota (for July 3) be filled within the first hour after the Valley visitor center opens on July 2. This is a holiday weekend, and the demand will be a lot higher. Your only reasonable chance is to show up at the Valley visitor center before everyone else before they open on July 2. Once a permit is obtained, you can stay at the Valley backpackers campground (behind North Pines) for $5 the night before you start your trip and the night you get back.

If you have a reservation, you should be able to pick up your permit at any permit station. I started at the Sunrise Lakes trailhead, and technically the Tuolemne permit station was the closest. I had a reservation and just picked up my permit at Big Oak Flat.

Good luck. If you can make it, it'll be a real fun trip. I'd advise you to not carry a loaded backup up or down the cables. Maybe a fanny pack or hydration pack.



Post Edited (06-30-07 21:39)
Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 06:08PM
Wow, this is a lot more complicated than I estimated.

I don't think I can start from Tanaya Lake. This will be my first hiking trip and I don't feel comfortable going that route.


Am I understanding this right? I have little chance to come in the morning get permit and go hiking the same day / come back next day. I have to come in the morning get permit for the next day, kill time for whole day, find somewhere to sleep, and go hiking next morning?
avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 06:20PM
Picking up the permit the day before is the most sure way of getting one. As popular as the trip to HD via LYV is the permits disappear the day before. The rule is that you can get your permit 24hours in advance on the first-come-first-served basis.

Coming in to Half Dame from Tanaya Lake is actually a bit easier than coming in form the valley floor plus you can knock off Clouds Rest at the same time.





Old Dude
avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 06:22PM
mrcondron wrote:

> Coming in to Half Dame from Tanaya Lake is actually a bit
> easier than coming in form the valley floor plus you can knock
> off Clouds Rest at the same time.

It has nicer camping too. LYV is a small city at times.

Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 06:38PM
Are you guys talking about camp Sunrise? No permit required?

How long would it take to leave campsite to HD and get back to Tanaya Lake?
avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 06:41PM
steel wrote:

> Are you guys talking about camp Sunrise? No permit required?

No, you'd still need a permit. I was thinking of a camp at the Cloud's Rest junction with the John Muir Trail. That probably wouldn't work well unless you are in very good shape.

avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 29, 2007 11:09PM
eeek wrote:

> steel wrote:
>
> > Are you guys talking about camp Sunrise? No permit required?
>
> No, you'd still need a permit. I was thinking of a camp at the
> Cloud's Rest junction with the John Muir Trail. That probably
> wouldn't work well unless you are in very good shape.

I just got back from my trip, and I camped in two spots in that area. There's one that's a bit south of the junction and a bit raised up from the John Muir Trail. There are a couple of fire rings, although one is in an area that's mostly granite without enough to stake a tent. It might be OK for someone sleeping in a bag alone or a mosquito net.

There are several well used camping spots that don't conform to the "100 ft" from the trail and water, but were in use anyways. That area is really good because of a decent water source a short walk away.

Oh - here's a photo of a bear that was in that area near Clouds Rest and JM Trails.



It apparently sniffed out some fellow campers' site and decided not to do anything. It also just took a look at us curious humans and walked away. It was early in the morning and I had a rather slow shutter speed with such low light.



avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 06:47PM
To give you an idea HOW busy LYV is...

<http://www.nps.gov/archive/yose/wilderness/permits.htm#reserve>;

Click on "Trailheads and dates listed indicate which days are full"
half way down. You'll see that Sunrise and ALL of LYV (Glacier,
Happy Isles) are fully booked for ALL of July.
So chances are you will have to burn a day to get a permit.

This is also why the HD cables are choked.

Anyway, best of luck.





Everything I know I learned from Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 07:03PM
> To give you an idea HOW busy LYV is...

That link was the reason I started asking questions here. BTW you guys are great thanks for all the insight.

I plan to leave campsite at 6 am. Is that early enough to avoid crowd at the cables?

And I can't find that campsite at the Cloud's Rest junction with the John Muir Trail on my map, is there a good online map with campsites marked?
avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 29, 2007 12:19AM
There isn't a marked camping area. You just get to the junction and find a good place to pitch your tent. You would be able to get to the cables in an hour or so from the junction. You can get back to Tanaya Lake the same day you do Half Dome but spending one more night and taking two days might be more comfortable.





Old Dude
avatar Re: Wilderness permit
June 29, 2007 12:54AM
mrcondron wrote:

> There isn't a marked camping area. You just get to the
> junction and find a good place to pitch your tent.

There at least used to be a very obvious spot near the junction. It even had a cable to hang food from.

Re: Wilderness permit
June 26, 2007 11:56PM
>I have to come in the morning get permit for the next day, kill time
>for whole day, find somewhere to sleep, and go hiking next morning?

Exactly, and to be honest, I wish I had that problem every day of the week. Having a day to kill in Yosemite is a wonderful thing.
Re: Wilderness permit
June 27, 2007 10:24AM
>Exactly, and to be honest, I wish I had that problem every day of the week. Having a day to kill in Yosemite is a wonderful thing.

Yep, I already have the day planned out, no worries smiling smiley
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