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East-Central Adirondacks


Dix Mountain
Wilderness

 

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The 45,208 acre Dix Mountain Wilderness is located in the east-central Adirondacks in Essex County.  The Wilderness is bounded by NY 73 to the north, I-87 to the east, County Route 2 to the south, Elk Lake Preserve and Adirondack Mountain Reserve lands to the west.  The main attraction is the 4857 foot Dix Mountain, although there are seven other peaks in this wilderness over 4000 feet.  Dix Mountain is the sixth highest peak in New York State.

General access to the wilderness is from NY 73, US 9 and Elk Lake Road.  The wilderness has nearly 50 miles of marked hiking trails as well as several miles of unmarked paths.  Marked trails lead to the highest point in the wilderness, Dix Mountain.  The trailheads along NY 73 are very popular and the trailhead at Elk Lake is limited.  There are no marked trails that enter the wilderness from US 9 trailheads.

There are three lean tos in Dix Mountain Wilderness.  They are the Boquet River Lean To along the Dix Mountain Trail from NY 73 and Slide Brook Lean To as well as Lillian Brook Lean To along the Dix Mountain Trail from Elk Lake.  There was an old road that once entered the wilderness from County Route 2 along the Niagara Brook and traveled to Clear Pond. 

There are 33 designated primitive camping spots located throughout the Dix Mountain Wilderness. These are all free to campers with FREE permits needed for anyone camping for more than three consecutive nights. Here is the list:

  • Chapel Pond - there are seven primitive campsites located on the northern end of the pond. They are accessible via a seasonal road that is just north of the Chapel Pond Parking Area.

  • Round Pond - there are four primitive campsites around the pond that are accessible from the Round Pond Parking Area.

  • North Fork Bouquet River - there are five primitive campsites located along a herd path that travels next to the river and goes 1.5 miles to Lilypad Pond. These are accessible from parking areas along NY 73 near the North Fork Bouquet River bridge.

  • South Fork Bouquet River - there is one primitive campsite located at the end of a 1.8 mile unmarked path. It is accessible from a parking area on NY 73 at the bridge over the river.

  • Colvin Range Trail - there are seven primitive sites on the trail or side trails located near the main trail.

  • South Dix Mountain Trail - there are eight primitive sites between the Elk Lake Parking Area and Dix Pond along the trail.

  • North Dix Mountain Trail - there is one primitive campsite located 4.2 miles along the trail from the Round Pond Parking Area, near the Bouquet River Lean To.

There are nine of the "46 High Peaks" located in Dix Mountain Wilderness. There are numerous popular bushwhacks in this wilderness. There are a few waterfalls you'll find in the wilderness via bushwhacks. Always be prepared when attempting a bushwhack or any hike to the high peaks.  Be prepared for any hike your planning.  It may just save your life! Look below for a list of destinations as well as a few of maps of the Dix Mountain Wilderness, including one from the NY DEC. You can find more info on this area from the NY DEC Website

Destinations in Dix Mountain Wilderness

Mount Colvin Dial Mountain Nippletop
Dix Mountain Blake Peak Hough Peak
East Dix South Dix Macomb Mountain
Round & Noonmark Mountains Walker Brook Camels Hump
Nippletop Mountain Niagara Mountain West Mill Brook
West Mill & Niagara Waterfalls Old Far Mountain Bear Mountain
Buck Mountain Lindsay Brook Round Pound
Lilypad Pond South Fork Bouquet River North Fork Bouquet River

   

Above map courtesy of AndyArthur.org

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