For many hikers, the ultimate Yosemite experience is heading out into the wilderness, miles and miles away from any human structures, crowds, constraints or routines.
To preserve this wilderness experience, Yosemite Conservancy partners with the National Park Service to administer wilderness permits. This permit system helps guarantee that each visitor has “outstanding opportunities for solitude.”
Wilderness permits are required for overnight trips only. Permits are not required for day hikes (except for Half Dome).
Bear-Proof Canister Rental
All overnight backpackers are also required to carry bear-proof canisters for storing food and other items. If you do not have your own bear-proof canister we can provide a rental.
A very important part of preserving the wilderness experience is keeping bears wild. Wild bears on natural diets stay healthy and are wary of approaching hikers. Storing your food in bear-proof canisters and never feeding bears keeps both backpackers and bears safe.
Fees Support the Park
Fees collected from permits and canisters are put to work in the park, in projects ranging from wildlife protection to educational programs.
If part of your Yosemite experience is heading into the wilderness, the Conservancy is here to help you secure your permit and bear-proof canister.
Half Dome Permits
Permits to hike to the top of Half Dome are required when the cables are up. Weather permitting, the cables are up late May to early October.
Day-use permits for Half Dome are not available in the park. Permits for the regular season are available through a lottery during the month of March each year. Approximately 50 permits will be available on a daily basis through a two-day-in-advance lottery. You can enter this two-day-in-advance lottery at the Recreation.gov link below.
For more information about Half Dome permits, visit the Yosemite National Park website.
To apply for a Half Dome permit, visit Recreation.gov.