If Yosemite’s iconic Half Dome is on your “bucket list,” there’s still a chance to get a permit this year. Although the majority of permits were distributed via lottery in March (300 per day), approximately 50 will be available on a daily basis throughout the summer.
To apply through the daily lottery, go to www.recreation.gov or call (877) 444-6777 two nights before the day you hope to make the hike. For instance, if you hope to hike on a Friday, you would enter the lottery on Wednesday anytime between midnight and 1 p.m. Because this is a lottery — not first come, first serve — you have an equal chance with all other applicants as long as your application is submitted by the deadline. The application fee is $4.50 (Internet) or $6.50 (phone). Up to six people can apply on one application.
You will be able to find out whether your application was selected by checking the website late on the night of the day you applied or by phone the next morning. If your application is selected, you will be charged a $5/person fee for each hiker. In order to avoid some of the fraud that occurred last year, permits can only be used if the hiking group includes the trip leader or alternate trip leader specified on the application. They cannot be transferred.
Your best chance to get a permit will be on a weekday. Additional information about the application process can be found at www.nps.gov/yose or by calling (209) 372-0200. Next year’s access to the summit may be granted in the same way or it may be significantly different as the park continues to develop a long-term plan to address safety and overcrowding issues.
Via Merced Sun Star