DIX RANGE
ADIRONDACK PARK,
NEW YORK


For this trip we chose a more remote section of the Adirondacks referred to as the Dix Mountain Wilderness. It consists of a range of five summits greater than 4000 feet elevation. The five summits are connected by ridges. Once you've gained one of the summits you can do all the others with limited elevation drop or gain. One particularity of the range is that the trails are "unofficial" herd trails that have been formed simply by other hikers following the same route. Deadfall is not cleared, there are no markers and at times the trails split and reform. A map and compass are essential items. My last three (and Dom's last two) trips to the Adirondacks have been to this range and all three have been variations. The first trip was the longest (13 hours) because we traversed the entire range. It was done in a total white out so I didn't take many pictures.



That hair's gonna get pretty scraggly!


As you can see we didn't use much sunscreen. We are on a "slide" which means all the vegetation was once ripped away by an avalanche along the flank of the mountain. Slide climbing can be a lot of fun because of the views. More on that later...

We continued along our route getting wetter and wetter, not because of rain but because the vegetation was soaked with the previous day's rain. The herd trails are rather narrow.










Notice Dominic's typical summit pose. The last (unclickable) pic was shot by Dominic through his now very scraggly hair.




A couple of weeks later François and I returned to the Dix Range to do the East Dix Slide.  Meet François.
 

francois
Our main objective was the Slide.  According to our internet source there would be 850 feet of vertical with a maximum inclination of 45 degrees near the top.  Here's a view of the slide taken on a later trip.

The slide looks pretty steep when viewed face on. As you'll see later it wasn't that bad.
We somehow ended up on the narrower left hand slide.  This slide runs out and becomes very dense bush (arctic zone spruce) We had a helluva time penetrating this stuff while going up a 45 deg. incline.





It was a lot of fun (and work) going up the slide. The open view was great. The foreshortening of the above photo makes it look like it's straight up. At the height we were at the angle is only about 30 deg.








Here's a few shots of our descent- easy does it!








Finally, Dominic and I went back for another kick at the can.


The weather was as good as it could get, sunny and not too warm with beautiful, clear skies.


To get to our main objective we followed the ridge over three summits. The views along the ridge were superb. The mountain behind Dominic is Mt. Dix and was our final summit for the day.



I conviced Dominic to take a picture! I told him it was for his Grandmother. We hiked up and down along the ridge and the peak we were heading for very gradually got closer and closer but seemed to get higher and higher. In these last two photos it is still an hour and a half and about 800 feet elevation gain away. Dosn't look like it in these shots does it?

We made it the summit at 6:00pm. The sun's low angle brought out the detail in the mountains. We had the summit to ourselves (this one has an official trail to the top which we followed back to the highway) and hung around for an hour taking pictures. We spread the map out and had an interesting time identifying the various peaks.

From the summit to the highway we still had a dozen or so kms. and 3200 feet elevation loss before us so off we went into the setting sun. We exited at a different trailhead but the car was there waiting for us. I learned a hiking trick from Pam and Dennis. Earlier in the day we met up with a couple who were exiting to the trailhead we entered. I gave them my keys and they moved the veichle. They were the only people we met all day. Good thing they weren't eaten by bears!!

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