Description 15x11 Watercolor;Half Dome is a granite dome formation at the eastern end of the Yosemite Valley in Yosemite National Park. It is the most well-known rock formation in the park, perhaps even in the entire United States. Its sheer face gives it the appearance of being a large rock thats been cut in half hence the name Half Dome. Half Dome has been the home to many famous ascents, including the first known ascent by George Anderson in 1875, who drilled holes into the smooth granite to scale the rocks face. In the time since then, Half Dome has been climbed by countless people. The Half Dome Cable Route hike runs from the valley floor to the top of the dome in 8.2 mi, with 4,800 ft of elevation gain. The length and difficulty of the trail used to keep it less crowded than other park trails, but in recent years the trail traffic has grown to as many as 1,000 hikers per day have climbed the dome on a summer weekend, and about 50,000 hikers climb it every year. Since 2011, all hikers who intend to ascend the Cable Route must now obtain permits before entering the park.