Great day at the top. The sky was sunny though a bit fuzzy, but this accented the distant ridges nicely. Loads of people. Looks like some of the dead forest are trying to regenerate.
Easy walk along the standard tourist path.
GREAT HIKE VERY NICE DAY
Heading back out west from Asheville. Road biked up 441 from Cherokee to summit parking lot. Next day drove up early and hiked to summit in moist foggy conditions.
Two great backpacking trips. If you can stand the rain, the Smokies are incredible.
Always love to bag a high peak and hike a section of the AT at the same time. Had Bob Schultz for company.
It was fun to pass all the people huffing up the trail. Views weren't good, too many clouds.
Starting at the top (parking lot) we hiked down the Forney Creek Trail until we reached backcountry camp site 70(where we stayed the night). In the moring, we hiked back up....all the way....up the stairs....and to the summit of Clingman's Dome. This is a long hike with lots of streams to fall in (I fell twice) and get water from. Great hike.
Pavement. What else can I say! How fun can it be?
Views are good, but there are a ton of people, and the smog is depressing.
A super easy "climb" from the parking lot (or the AT for that matter), but well worth it for the views. Stunning views when the smog/haze isn't too bad (rare anymore apparently).
An easy hike. Nice view of the smokies from there.
The summit was shrouded in clouds and mist both times I went. A short, but enjoyable, hike. I took a detour in 2001 and explored a bit of the Appalachian Trail on the way to the top.
Stopped by after a backpacking trip in GSMNP.
Time permitting I drove to the parking lot near Clingman's Dome. I had just climbed LeConte via the Alum Cave trail. April 1st was the first day the road to Clingman's Dome was open in 2003. The views were spectacular from the lookout tower. This was my 20th state highpoint. I have now done 21 state highpoints.
One of the best memories I have of two years in Missouri in the army at Ft. Leonard Wood was the trip my wife and I made to Tennessee and the Great Smokies. As I remember, the most difficult thing was finding a parking space. Great views in all directions and I came to an understanding of how the "Great Smokies" got their name. I'd love to do this one again. Several bears that were panhandling created a traffic jam on the road up. : )
In the early 70's I saw the summit forest intact. Beautiful elfin forest of Red Spruce and Fraser Fir(Balsam). Since then it has become a sad reminder of bug importation- Euro aphid and Acid Rain. Walked up in summer 86 from Cades Cove over Thunder Head etc. took two nights out. and hitch hiked out with a one-eyed driver, a Vietnam Vet who had a handy beer cooler in the back. "Help yourselves boys and pass me some. One has to negotiate a long canyon
from Sugarlands back to Cades Cove but our Odin like driver with Meade by Miller was more than up to the task.
I've never climbed Clingman's Dome. I always drive up and stroll to the tower. Of my four trips, three of them found the summit in its usual overcast mantle of clouds. The last time, though, in 1999, the air was clear and the view amazing. As with the rest of the high country along the spine of the Southern Appalachians, it's horrifying to see the effects of acid rain on the healthy evergreen climax forests I hiked through as a youth. I'm glad I saw them at their peak, but the destruction of those forests by pollution still horrifies and enrages me.
Brutal cold in April - but no tourists. Nice views of the Smokies from the tower. The tower reminded me of a marble race toy we had when we were kids.
I got to the parking lot at about 7:00 on what would later be a crowded summer Sunday. Early in the morning, however, I had the whole place to myself, except for a nice couple from Georgia. The views were nice, except for the dead trees. I'm sure the place was truly stunning before the trees died. It's too bad the Park Service can't (or won't, what ever the case may be) do anything to save them. I encountered a verly large (and brave) doe on the way down. Get there early to avoid the crowds!