Monday, October 1, 2012

Clingmans Dome a Must-See in the Smokies

At 6,643 feet, Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The observation tower on the summit of Clingmans Dome offers spectacular 360° views of the Smokies and beyond for visitors willing to climb the steep half-mile walk to the tower at the top.

Temperatures here can be 10 -20 degrees cooler than in the surrounding lowlands, and clouds and precipitation are to be expected. Dress in layers and be sure to bring a jacket, even in summer.
Clingmans Dome is a popular area for photographers and mountain view enthusiasts. When the weather is relatively clear, you will find photographers lined up for the perfect shot at sunset.

Directions: From Cherokee, NC, proceed on Newfound Gap Road and turn off onto Clingmans Dome Road near Newfound Gap. follow Clingmans Dome Road to the large parking area at the end. It’s seven miles to the end of Clingmans Dome Road and there are scenic pullouts with endless views of ridges and valleys along the way. Total mileage to Clingmans Dome from Cherokee is 25.

Although Clingmans Dome is open year-round, the road leading to it is closed from December 1 through March 31, and whenever weather conditions require.

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