Sunday, May 23, 2010
Chimney Tops Trail…4 Miles
Road Prong Trail…4.8 Miles
Total Miles….8.8 Miles
Lora and I went over to the ponderosa for the night. We got up the next morning and headed out with Dad for a hike to the Chimney Tops.
The Chimney Tops trail is considered a strenuous trail due to the elevation change. You gain 1300 feet over two miles. At the top you do some rock climbing for a spectacular view. There is some competition as this is one of the most popular trails in the park. Get there early. There were five cars there when we started and a line of them when we got done.
We hiked up to the Chimney Tops, but did not climb the rocks all the way to the top because they were wet and slippery. From there we hiked back down to the Road Prong Trail and hiked it to the Appalachian Trail and Clingmans Dome Road.
The Road Prong Trail used to be an old toll road in the 1920’s. It runs from the Chimney Top Trail to Clingmans Dome Road, A gain of 1500 feet over 2.4 miles. There are a couple of areas that you can still see the road bed, but for the most part it is a single path trail along Road Prong. There are some areas that you actually hike in Road Prong so you would not want to hike this in high water.
We did see some bear sign; A fresh pile of scat that would make any bear proud and some trees and stumps tore up.
Both of these trails are beautiful hiking trails and full of wildflowers in the spring.