How to get up the cables

CIMG8868CIMG8870Half Dome – Yosemite Musing

Most people you see going up Half Dome’s cables use both hands on the left and right cables. I’d bet 97% do. I don’t think this is the best way. Why? Well, think about what primary muscles you are using. The pectorals. Not the largest ones in the body. As much as you should use your legs, the steep slope makes it tough. Try my method. As shown in the shots above, I get on the right side of the cables, crouch down like Groucho Marx and put my feet flat on the rock at about a 45-degree angle. This gives me maximum boot-to-rock contact. Then with my bicycle gloves, I kinda of “rappel” up the rock. Reaching with my uphill arm, then following with a pull up with my downhill arm. Over and over. The advantage is that you are now using your bigger muscles– the back, lats, shoulder and arms. If you get there early enough, you can scoot right up. Even if it is crowded, you can still use this method. Tomorrow we talk about going down.

Unrelated thought worth quoting: “Pretty woman, won’t you pardon me. Pretty woman, I couldn’t help see – Pretty woman, That you look lovely as can be; Are you lonely just like me?” – Roy Orbison*

Mr. Half Dome -Rick Deutsch –


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