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Ascent of Dix Mountain on 2012-07-01

Climber: Dan Quinlan

Others in Party:Kaerstin
Date:Sunday, July 1, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Dix Mountain
    Location:USA-New York
    Elevation:4823 ft / 1470 m

Ascent Trip Report

June 29-July 1, 2012
Macomb, South Dix, East Dix, Hough and Dix
Kaerstin and I decided to do the Dix Range as a three day camping trip. Day 1 and 3 were easy in and out leaving us the whole middle day to enjoy each and everyone one of these gorgeous peaks.
Day One
We left the lower parking lot on Upper Works at 1:20 pm. It is incredibly hot, the car thermometer showed 88 deg F. Luckily we didn’t have to go very far with full packs. We reached the start of the Macomb herd path at 2:20 pm. We went on to the Slide Brook lean-to, but decided we would set up our tent at the site just off the Macomb herd path.

Day Two
We were up and on the trail at 8:10 on a pretty clear morning. Temperatures are going to be hot, but there is a pretty strong wind that we will certainly appreciate to keep us cool later in the day. Kaekae was not feeling very well and after just 30 minutes or so, she was feeling so sick to her stomach that she wanted to head back to the campsite. We decided to take a rather long break and try again. We slowly mad our way again and she slowly started to feel better. The herd path is in excellent shape and was very good hiking. Then we got our first glimpse of the slide on Macomb, wow, this is gonna be good. This slide is a bit different than many of the slides we have been on here in the ADKs. This one is very loose, both rocks and dirt. There were cairns almost everywhere, and everyone seemed to have their own idea of what the best attack is. We stayed pretty far to the left at the beginning, but then found that if we could find solid ledge, that was the most stable and easy way up the slide. We took several breaks, just to enjoy the wonderful views as we made our way up higher and higher. Once we reached the top of the slide Kaerstin announced that she is 70% and ready to continue our hike.
We got to the summit of Macomb at 10:15 am. The views were gorgeous, partly cloudy with a pretty stiff breeze which kept us cool in the very hot sun. We were headed to South Dix at 10:35. There is a nice open scramble up to S. Dix. The wind in the col between Macomb and S. Dix was very strong today, needed to watch your balance. We reached the summit of S. Dix at 11:20am. Although the summit is treed, there is a very nice open ledge that provided more great views of where we came from. We didn’t stay too long, deciding we would head to East Dix and on our way back we would have lunch here on S. Dix. The herd paths on this hike continue to be in very good shape and we were on the summit of East Dix at 12:10. East Dix provided great views into the Champlain Valley. There seems to increase in the clouds but there is still blue coming through.
We were back on South Dix at 1:20 and made a cup-a-noodles and relaxed as we enjoyed the wonderful views. Once again we are happy that the wind is pretty strong as the sun certainly is very hot out in the open. The trail between south and east Dix were in great shape especially since they are “herd paths”.
We were back on the trail headed to Hough at 1:40pm. The day continues to be partly cloudy and breezy. Had some wonderful views of Hough, Dix and the Great Range. We reached Hough at 2:35 where we did some visiting with fellow hikers and enjoyed the views from the open peak. I must admit, that this far into the hike, the last pitch up Dix look a bit daunting! But after some snacks and drinks, which we are beginning to run low on, we continue our trek toward our last peak of the day.
There are a few pretty steep and tricky spots on the way up to Dix, but they are also fun. We reach the summit at 4:00 pm. The views to the east over the Champlain Valley are a bit hazy now, but still very nice. Found the original Survey Disc at the summit that Verplanck Colvin set back in 1873, pretty cool!
We left Dix and head down for the long trek to our campsite at 4:35. We chose to use the Beckhorn trail as it is a bit shorter than Hunters Pass and at this point, the day has been long enough.
The start off Dix down the Beckhorn starts out very steep. By now we are rationing our water, hoping w can get down to one of brooks before we run out. We got to the junction of the Beckhorn and Dix trail at 6:10pm. So now it is a pretty level hike back to the Slide Brook.
We reached slide brook at 7:15 where we went directly to the brook to pump some water and quench our thirst.
This is a great loop hike. The views from all the peaks were great and the trails are easy to navigate. A great day all around.

Day Three
After a nice quiet breakfast and packing up the campsite, we are back on the trail at 8:45 am. An hour later we are at the car to finish a great 3 day hike!

Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:1550 ft / 472 m
    Elevation Loss:3850 ft / 1173 m
    Distance:7.5 mi / 12 km
    Quality:9 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Scramble
    Weather:Hot, Breezy, Overcast
Hot, breeze keeps us cool
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:1000 ft / 305 m
    Distance:1.1 mi / 1.9 km
    Route:Herd Path
    Trailhead:Hough  3823 ft / 1165 m
    Time Up:1 Hours 25 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Elevation Loss:3850 ft / 1173 m
    Extra Gain:550 ft / 167 m
    Distance:6.3 mi / 10.1 km
    Route:Herd Path, Beckhorn, Dix
    Trailhead:Elk Lake   1523 ft / 464 m
    Time Down:4 Hours 15 Minutes
Ascent Part of Trip: Dix Range

Complete Trip Sequence:
OrderPeak/PointDate
1Macomb Mountain2012-07-01 a
2South Dix2012-07-01 b
3East Dix Mountain2012-07-01 c
4Hough Peak2012-07-01 d
5Dix Mountain2012-07-01 e



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