Half Dome is about 3.3 mi. e. of Yosemite Village, reached via Yosemite Valley hiking trails. The granite dome, a familiar landmark, rises more than 4,000 feet above the valley floor; it can be seen throughout eastern Yosemite Valley and Glacier Point.
A very strenuous 8.5-mile hike to the top typically takes 5-6 hours one way, with metal cables assisting hikers up the last 900 feet. Permits are required above the subdome and can be reserved in a preseason lottery held in March. A limited number of permits also are available in a daily lottery; the winning applicants on a particular day can hike the dome on the second day following the drawing.
Note: Hikers are advised not to ascend Half Dome when cables are not erected or if thunderclouds are visible.