As I mentioned in my previous post, our original plan was to turn north toward home this Thursday morning, but Terry thought we’d enjoy one more trip up to a high peak. None of us objected! We saw some clouds winding through the mountains when we left the hotel; however, we had no idea Clingman’s Dome would be entirely smothered. We’re clearly not accustomed to mountain-terrain weather patterns.
When we visited Clingman’s Dome on Monday, we had already hiked several mountainous miles, and were too exhausted to climb the incredibly-steep half-mile trail to the peak. Although we couldn’t see the amazing views we had anticipated, we still hiked up and up.
The air was thick with moisture.
We stopped frequently on our trek upward so that I could
catch my breath capture some more poignant photographs:)
We purchased these fancy hiking sticks from the park store. One was a gift for Papa in thanks for minding the pets while we were gone, but we figured he wouldn’t mind us “trying it out.”
This is the observation tower, where 360* views are acclaimed.
Up again, into thicker and thicker clouds.
Clingman’s Dome Trail stats
Trail Features: Great views
Roundtrip Miles: 1 mile
Total Elevation Gain: 350 feet
Highest Elevation: 6643 feet
Trail Caution: Steep
Road to dome is closed in winter.
We made it to the top!
Apparently these are the mountain peaks we would have seen, had clouds not surrounded us.
Sorta anticlimactic and dreary.
Now, back down.
Becca was sure to use Papa’s hiking stick as she walked a bit down the Appalachian Trail from this junction, so she could proclaim to Papa the significant places his hiking stick had hiked.
On downward. At least this direction was easier to walk!
What it could have looked like:)
Nevertheless, we are glad that we conquered the Clingman’s Dome peak. One day, I pray we can return in clear skies!