East Dix (43rd), South Dix (37th) & Hough (23rd)
Another Tough Day in the Dix Range, July 21st, 2004.
Dix Summit from Dix-Hough Trail
Dix Summit from the Dix-Hough Trail.

Will I never learn? Dan and I hiked up Dix from the Noonmark-Round Mountain-Route 73 trail in August of 2001. Hard rain and zero visibility greeted us at the summit, and it proved to be Chino's final High Peaks hike. In early July 2004, I chose the wrong herd path hiking up Macomb, and not only had to bushwhack my way through Hurricane Floyd blowdown to the West Slide to ascend Macomb, but I became disoriented in the col between Macomb's north and south summit on my return to Macomb's main summit, and had to bushwhack through blowdown halfway down the mountain, before following a creek which led into Slide Creek at the Elk Lake trail. Two weeks later, Roscoe and I hiked out from the Route 73 trail along the North Fork of the Bouquet River, trying to reach East Dix, South Dix and Hough, the remaining peaks in my Dix Range Horror Show.  I actually chose the correct trail, decided I was wrong, doubled back and followed a trail which seemed to head in the right direction, then petered out at a beautiful camp site along the river. To "save time", I began bushwhacking towards the Dix range, over Spotted Mountain and up the flank of Dix, where we encountered a black bear in a blueberry patch. Roscoe stood his ground, the bear and I did a mutual "yikes!" exchange of looks, after which the bear fled. We finally reached the col between Dix and Hough about 5:00 PM. I quickly hiked over Hough, South Dix and East Dix, finding myself on East Dix at 7:30 PM, many miles from any road. You guessed it: after hiking down the East Dix Slide, and finally picking up the trail I was supposed to be on much earlier in the morning, Roscoe and I had to settle in for the night under a huge glacial erratic along the South Fork of the Bouquet River, without a flashlight, matches, sleeping bag or even long trousers. Good planning! After a chilly sleepless night, we hiked out at 5:00 AM. If you decide to hike the Dixes, do yourself a favor, don't follow my example, try planning your trip thoroughly, and whatever you do, stay on the trail!

Click on Photos to Enlarge
Hough and South Dix from the Dix trail Elk Lake from Dix Hough trail
View from Spotted Mountain
Hough and South Dix from Dix trail, Elk Lake from Dix trail, and the view from Spotted Mountain.
North Fork of the Bouquet River Camp Site on the North Fork of the BouquetNorth Fork of the Bouquet River
North Fork of the Bouquet River, and the campsite where I crossed the river and began the bushwhack to Dix.
 
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