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Clingmans Dome Trail

Intermediate
 4.0 (53)

A steep ascent that is rewarded with amazing views.


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Map Key

0.8

Miles

1.3

KM

Point to Point

6,647' 2,026 m

High

6,190' 1,887 m

Low

457' 139 m

Up

1' 0 m

Down

11%

Avg Grade (6°)

21%

Max Grade (12°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Views

Family Friendly While the ascent is surely steep, you can't afford to miss this with your children. The trail is short enough to be doable, and the views will make it more than worth it.

The observation tower is open year round. However, the road leading up to it is closed from December 1 through March 31, and whenever weather conditions require.

Need to Know

This is a steep climb be prepared! Wear the appropriate shoes and bring water. If you need to stop along the way there are benches. Keep a lookout for the trail markers which will let you know how far you have left. Keep pushing it's worth it!

It cooler (and sometimes wet) on the observation deck and at the higher elevation so bring a jacket just in case.

Description

The wonderful mountain views start the minute you park your car. There is ample parking space at the base of the trail. The visitor's center is located at the base. There are many viewpoints and lookouts for those who are not capable of climbing the trail.

The paved trail is a straight shot up. Don't be intimidated by the trail's climb. I've seen all ages and fitness levels reach the deck. Take your time and move at a pace that is comfortable to you. There is no tree cover so you are exposed to the elements. It tends to drizzle a bit so be prepared for the weather. You can ask a park ranger or staff in the visitor's center regarding the forecast.

You pass over the Appalachian Trail (AT) closer to the top which is a real treat.

Although this trail is short and paved, it can be challenging. Come prepared and ready to conquer!

Contacts

Shared By:

Stephanie Morrison

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 53 votes

#38

Overall
  4.0 from 53 votes
5 Star
40%
4 Star
23%
3 Star
34%
2 Star
2%
1 Star
2%
Trail Rankings

#38

Overall
88 Views Last Month
3,192 Since Sep 4, 2015
Intermediate

13%
2%
66%
0%
19%
0%

Photos

Plenty of mountains to view from Clingman's Dome.
Mar 31, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Good morning, Great Smokies!
Aug 4, 2016 near Bryson…, NC
Great views from up here.
Jun 9, 2016 near Bryson…, NC
Below the observation deck.  There is a landing there which would make a great spot for lunch.
Nov 13, 2015 near Gatlinburg, TN
Heading to Clingmans Dome Observation Tower.
Aug 4, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
View from the very beginning of Andrews Bald!
Jun 28, 2018 near Bryson…, NC

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Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
Minor Issues 15 days ago See History
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

May 28, 2020
Emily White
very cloudy and sprinkling, nothing visible 0.8mi
May 23, 2020
William Newsom
Super foggy 1.2mi — 0h 30m
May 23, 2020
Nick Smith
0.8mi — 0h 30m
Nov 29, 2019
Rachel Affleck
Nov 28, 2019
Shien Z
Nov 5, 2019
Meggie Tran
1mi roundtrip
Oct 14, 2019
Tammy E
Awesome 360 view. Bumper to bumper up the mt to trailhead.
Sep 23, 2019
Casey Koeser
0h 20m