Well, Clingman's dome did not conquer us, we conquered it after many stops along the way for little legs, and mom's legs. It was quite an ascent. And a wonderful view all the way around! The kids said it was worth the hike. They loved the views of Smokies. It brought back many memories for me of the different times we went as a family, and different ages I was. Bob and I came, I think twice, and did a lot of hiking then. Hah, I would have to get in better shape. At the Ranger's station, they have a gift shop, and the kids found stuffed black bears. We bought each one a bear, and they immediately named them. Then they were treating them like they were babies. Yes, babies. They even went up clingman's dome with the kids. Although Katy toward the end of the hike started saying, I wish I had not brought the bear. Too late for that. But the bears did make it back down the moutain and took naps in the car along with the kids.
I really had a sense of peace being in the mountains today. Can't explain it but I did. Thanks for all your comments, and keeping up with our trip.