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    Jeff Hester

    This came via email…

    Hi Jeff!

    My family and I got the permit for Half Dome for July 19th – any training tips? I would like to slowly build up so maybe start off with some easier hikes now then progressively build up to Whitney/San Antonio/San Jacinto. What do you recommend for us? We are in fairly good shape (we did the Zion Narrows last year and did great) but I want to be well prepared for Yosemite. Any suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated.


    p.s. my family is in LA and I live in OC so anything in those areas would be great!

    Jeff Hester

    There are three factors to consider when training for something like Half Dome:

    1. distance
    2. vertical gain/loss
    3. altitude

    In OC, you can train for the distance and vertical gain pretty easily. I would suggest checking out the Sitton Peak Trail, the Chiquito Falls Trail, and the Holy Jim Trail to Santiago Peak.

    In LA, this loop up Mt Wilson will get you the distance and vertical gain. If you can manage that, then you’re probably ready for Mt. San Antonio (Baldy), which will give you the altitude.

    If you’re really feeling ambitious, consider hiking my Six-Pack of Peaks.

    These are all longer hikes suitable for a weekend. I would supplement with shorter, more local hikes. Check out our trail guides for variety.

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