Half Dome Trail Stewardship Plan - EA
The National Park Service released the Half Dome Trail Stewardship Plan Environmental Assessment (EA) for public review in January 2012. The Half Dome Trail is the route to the summit of Half Dome, one of the most popular and well known hikes in Yosemite National Park. The plan will:
1. Protect the wilderness character of the project area
2. Improve the visitor experience on the Half Dome Trail by reducing crowding
3. Protect the area's natural and cultural resources
4. Improve the ability of its visitors to manage their own risk
This EA fulfills the requirements under 102(2) (C) of the National Environmental Policy Act and section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.
Initial public scoping began on May 26, 2010 and ended July 9, 2010. All comments generated during scoping were considered as a range of alternatives was developed.
A No Action Alternative (no restrictions) and four action alternatives are evaluated in this EA. The alternatives are:
Alternative A - No restrictions
Alternative B - 400 people per day
Alternative C - 300 people per day
Alternative D - 140 people per day
Alternative E - Remove the cables
Alternative C (300 people per day) was identified as the Preferred Alternative as it provides the optimum visitor experience while protecting wilderness character along the Trail. This EA presents an analysis of the potential environmental impacts of each alternative. Public, tribal, and agency consultation continues to play an important role in developing this plan.
Comment Period: 01/24/2012 - 03/15/2012