Heading to the Smoky Mountains? The Road to the Highest Point, Clingmans Dome Will Soon Open for the 2023 Season
If you ever take a trip to the Smoky Mountains, a must-see is Clingmans Dome, and soon it will open for the season!
The Smoky Mountains
It seems that one of the most popular vacation destinations for Tri-Staters is the Smoky Mountain region. It's the perfect driving distance because you can head to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, or Pigeon Forge, and it's close enough that you can make a long weekend out of it, but there's enough to do that you can make an entire week-long vacation there too!
My husband and I are big fans of the area because we love enjoying the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. One of our favorite sights to see is Clingmans Dome. It doesn't matter how many times we've been there, the views are always breathtaking.
Clingmans Dome -The Highest Point in the Smoky Mountains
It's always interesting going into the Great Smoky Mountains National Park because even though we enter the park in Tennessee when we go to see Clingmans Dome, we cross into North Carolina. Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Smoky Mountains, and at that elevation, the weather can be drastically different than when you enter the park.
A few years ago my husband and I went to Clingmans Dome in June, when we entered the Great Smoky Mountains National Park through Gatlinburg the weather was warm, sunny, and 80 degrees. By the time we drove up to Clingmans Dome, the temperature had dropped to 50 degrees (note our jackets)!
One reason we always enjoy visiting Clingmans Dome is that it isn't a long trek to get to a stunning view. Although the short trek is straight up the side of a mountain, so you do have to walk up a steep hill, but the view is absolutely worth it!
The Road to Clingmans Dome Opens Soon!
Since Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Smoky Mountains, the area isn't a stranger to frigid, snowy winters, so during the winter they close off the road so you can't drive up to Clingmans Dome. However, if you're an avid hiker, and the cold weather doesn't bother you, you can take the hike up. I'm not that skilled, so I'll just wait for warmer temps!
The road to Clingmans Dome will officially open on April 1st and remain open until November 30th.
Here is what Explore Bryson City has to say about Clingmans Dome:
Known as the highest point of the Great Smoky Mountains with an elevation of 6,634 feet, Clingmans Dome is home to many hiking trails and an observation tower, which overlooks miles of the national forest. A park visitor center and restrooms are available. Several other hiking trails can be accessed from this point as well, including the Forney Ridge Trail that leads to beautiful Andrews Bald. Start your trek to our highest peak. The road to Clingmans Dome is open from April 1 - November 30.