Snake Dike 5.7 R
Trip ReportSnake Dike - May 13, 2013 - updated Aug 18, 2013
: I dedicate this trip report and incredible experience to my son Matthew who
: inspired me to start climbing 5 years ago at the age of 54. He passed
: away on Tuesday, Aug. 13 at the age of 26 tragically in a light plane crash
: working for PG&E.
: Matthew worked at Touchstone Diablo in Concord for a while a few years
: ago and loved working with kids. Every time I set a personal best in
: the climbing gym, I would text Matt and tell him as I progressed from
: 5.10a to 5.11d. He was very excited for me. He will be deeply missed.//
After my first multi-pitch climb late last year on Cathedral Peak, decided to do the classic Snake Dike route early in the season with a buddy (Ian Fyfe) and help of Yosemite Guide, Josh Helling (had Josh lead as we're fairly new to outdoor multi-pitch climbs). We picked Monday May 13 as we'd likely have the entire route to ourselves (we were rewarded). Also decided to camp the night before in Little Yosemite Valley so as to avoid the long hike up from the valley in the early morning.
We hiked down to Little Yosemite Valley from Glacier Point (after snagging a back-country permit). The view of Half Dome Snake Dike route from Glacier Pt. is intimidating (from this angle)
Leaving Glacier Point at about 3:45pm on Sunday May 12. This is a 6.8 mi hike and has a total ascent of 918 ft (maximum elevation of 7,345.8 ft). We reached camp about sunset (7:45).
Met Josh at 7:30am the next morning where the approach branches off the main trail. After a about 1.5 hours of class 3 scrambling we reached the Snake Dike climb start.
Here's an un-edited (sorry) GoPro video of the first 2 pitches. Beautiful day and had the entire route to ourselves. Made good time with Josh leading.
and here's Go-Pro of Pitches 3 and 4.
We reached the top of the 8th pitch in about 2 hours 45 min. Here's Josh (pic below) with his foot resting on the large block at the top of pitch 8. Josh advised us that this block has been slowly moving down the slope about 2 - 3 feet over the course of 10+ years he has been doing this route. Look for a big rock-slide in a few years when it lets go.
We took the obligatory summit pics and rapped down the cables (still resting on the granite) as it was before memorial Weekend when they are re-mounted on the posts.
Descending the cables...
Once down the cables, hiked the 8+miles to the valley floor via the mist trail. Waterfalls (Nevada and Vernal) at peak flow.
Great day - awesome weather - great route. Highly recommended.
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