Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Half Dome Permits: Good!
So far the new, temporary system requiring day use permits for Half Dome day hikes on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and holiday Mondays is a great success. Yes, there are some people who are unaware of the new permit system and are denied a chance to show up and go on these three days of the week, but for most people, there are real plusses. Some folks pooled their friends and got dozens of permits - then didn't use them all, making the weekend days more safe and pleasant than ever. Mondays and Thursdays have gotten a little busier than they were. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are still fairly mellow. Visitor complaints have been few while commendations have been many - a real improvement in the Half Dome experience has been achieved quickly. There's a broad realization that going to a seven-day day hike permit system would be a further positive step. NPS is compiling data and hiker input for a more quantitative assessment. Public comment on the future of Half Dome's cables is being sought now; speak up!
The river and falls continue to decline in volume. Mosquitos are still annoying in the Valley and in places in the high country.
Datura, spicebush, Clarkia, elderberry, and mockorange are in bloom in the Merced canyon below the Valley.