Midtown's ACHIEVE Fitness, located on Center Street just south of the Discovery Museum, has obtained permits for hiking to the summit of Half Dome in Yosemite National Park the week of July 22, 2012. Assignment of permits is by lottery and only 400 people are allowed to climb to the summit each day.

To get conditioned for the climb to the top of Half Dome or tackling some of the country’s other most challenging hiking trails, ACHIEVE Fitness is offering its Fifth Annual Train to Hike to Half Dome Summit program.

Participants of all fitness and hiking experience levels are welcome to attend but must be in general good health. Members of past training groups have ranged in age from their twenties to their seventies.

“While anyone can attempt to climb to the top of Half Dome, people have a much better and more successful experience if they train before they climb,” said Karen Carabio, hike leader, certified personal trainer and owner of ACHIEVE Fitness.

According to Carabio, the training program consists of four parts:

Part 1: Two-hour classroom orientation 

Participants will receive information on the hike training program, discuss recommended equipment and supplies, and plan for the first training hike (see schedule below).This session takes place on

Sunday, April 7, 2012 from 3 to 5 p.m. at ACHIEVE Fitness, 600 South Center Street in Reno.

Part 2: Twelve-week customized cardio and strength training plan 

Each participant will receive an initial fitness assessment and individualized cardio and strength training plan to prepare for hiking. Plans will be adjusted as needed throughout the program.

Part 3: Twelve weekly guided training hikes 

The 12 weekly guided training hikes take place in the Truckee Meadows and Tahoe regions. Specific hike locations will be determined depending on weather and participants’ needs and fitness levels.

Each progressively challenging trail will build in duration, elevation and terrain difficulty, and pack weight also will increase. Hike dates are:

  • Sunday, April 22
  • Saturday, April 28
  • Sunday, May 6
  • Saturday, May 12
  • Sunday, May 20
  • Saturday, May 26
  • Sunday, June 3
  • Saturday, June 9
  • Saturday, June 16
  • Saturday, June 23
  • Sunday, July 1
  • Saturday, July 14 (can opt to return the same day or spend the night and return Sunday, July 15)

Prior to each hike, participants will meet at a central local spot and have the option to car pool to the hike location. Meeting times usually are at 8 a.m., depending on the hike location.

Part 4: ACHIEVE Fitness Fifth Annual Half Dome Summit Guided Hike (optional) 

Hikes to the summit of Half Dome will take place the week of July 22 (more specific information will be provided during classroom orientation).

Those joining the ACHIEVE Fitness Fifth Annual Half Dome Summit Hike need to participate in the classroom orientation, cardio and strength training plan and weekly guided training hikes in order to maximize safety and enjoyment for all those involved in this hike. 


The cost for all four components of the program, including the optional guided Half Dome summit hike and related permits, is $250.00 per person and must be paid in full by Monday, April 16, 2012. The cost does not include transportation, food, equipment or Yosemite Valley lodging. There is no cost for attending classroom orientation if a participant decides not to continue with the rest of the program.

About the hike leader 

Karen Carabio is a fitness enthusiast and coach with 35 years of wilderness hiking experience. In addition to leading numerous local and Yosemite Valley backcountry hikes, she has climbed to the top of Half Dome eight times and has led other hikes to the summits of Mt. Rose and Mt.Tallac. She also has climbed

Mt. Shasta and Mt. Rainier and trekked to Mt. Everest base camp in 2011.