Mount Collins and Clingmans Dome Professional Guide
Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook
"This overnight hike will take you over the highest point on the A.T., Clingmans Dome (elevation 6,643'). On clear days, there are outstanding views of the peaks of the Great Smokies from the observation tower. Formerly Smoky Dome, the peak is named after Thomas L. Clingman, a Civil War general and U.S. Senator. Clingman was known for his heated debate with Elisha Mitchell. The two argued over which peak in the state was the highest: Grandfather Mountain or Balsam Mountain.
The debate took place through editorials in rival Asheville, North Carolina, newspapers. Mitchell died in a fall while trying to prove his claim that Balsam Mountain was the tallest. History proved Mitchell right, however, and the highest peak east of the Mississippi bears his name."