A large section of the Regular Northwest Face route on Yosemite, CA’s über-famous Half Dome has fallen off. The piece that fell left the Regular Northwest Face route, one of the world’s most historic routes, unclimbable.
“The large ledge at the end of Pitch 11, the traverse at the start of Pitch 12, and the bottom of the chimney pitches in the middle of Pitch 12 have disappeared.” – Climbing Magazine
It is currently unknown when the rockfall occurred.
A climbing party was attempting the Regular Northwest Face route on July 5th when they got to Pitch 11 and noticed the missing huge chunk of rock. Right now, there is no way to climb this section of the route without extremely challenging unprotected free or aid climbing. Climbers will most likely enjoy finding a new way through this part of the climb.
The first ascent of the Regular Northwest Face of Half Dome was a huge pioneering big wall climb back in 1957.
I see that as a possible progressing failure up an exfoliation slab. Often, when you see rockfalls coming from underneath a roof at the base of an exfoliation slab, more will follow. I hope nobody goes up there for quite a while.” – Roger Putnam, climber and geologist who climbed the Regular Northwest Face on June 22nd, 2015