Dix can be climbed by itself, but in many cases is combined with the rest or parts of the range. The Dix Range also includes Carson Peak (South Dix), Grace Peak (formally East Dix), Hough Peak, and Macomb Mountain. If hiking all mountains in the Dix Range, see our listing for the entire Dix Range.
How to get there
There are two main access points for Dix Mountain.
Round Pond: To reach this trailhead, head south on NY 73 from Lake Placid and Keene about 1 miles past the parking area at Chapel Pond. The start is marked with a small DEC sign and there is a small parking area just north of the trailhead. Do not park on the shoulder of the road. If you park even a little off the side of the road your car could be towed while you are gone.
Elk Lake: To get there from the intersection of Route 86 and Route 73 in Lake Placid, follow Route 73 through Keene and Keene Valley. Continue on Route 73 to I-87. Merge onto the highway and continue until Exit 29 (North Hudson). Turn left on Blue Ridge Road and continue about 4 miles toward Newcomb, where you'll see a sign for the Elk Lake Lodge. Turn right here and follow this to the end of the road. Keep in mind, in winter, the lot at Elk Lake is closed and hikers will need to start at Clear Pond, 2-miles down the road, adding 4-miles RT to a hike.
By the numbers
- Elevation: 4,857 feet
- Dix Mountain is High Peak #6
- Dix's summit is home to fragile alpine vegetation — avoid trampling it by staying on the rocks at all times
- Follow Leave No Trace principles
- See descriptions below for trail milages
There are multiple approaches to this mountain. These are the most popular when climbing Dix by itself. Dix is a very tough hike with steep terrain, exposed sections and very long distances. The views from Dix are some of the best in Northeast including views of the Green Mountains in Vermont. They say on a super clear day the White Mountains of New Hampshire can be seen off in the distance. Below are brief descriptions of the two marked trails to Dix Mountain. To visit the other peaks in the range, we highly recommend you pick up a guide book for more in depth detail or hire a local guide to assist you in your visit to the Dix Range.
Round Pond: This is a 13.6 mile RT when doing Dix Mountain alone. From Route 73, you will climb steeply above the road and follow a moderate course to the shore of Round Pond. After a hike around Round Pond, you will start a modest ascent to a four-way intersection. From here it's mostly flat to the Bouquet River Lean-to at 4.2 miles. From this point the climb starts to get a bit steeper to the base of the slides on the face of Dix. The slides do not access the summit. After passing along the base of the slides you will duck back into the woods and start a very steep and demanding hike along an eroded path. The steep terrain does not end until the summit is practically reached. This makes for a challenging, but rewarding, climb.
Elk Lake: Please note, this route is closed during big game season. Hikers commonly choose to climb Dix from the south by taking the Hunter Pass Trail from Elk Lake toward Hunters Pass and then on to Dix for a 7.3 mile one way hike. Some take Hunter Pass Trail to the Beckhorn Trail for a 6.6 mile one way hike. Hunter's Pass is a longer trail but slightly less steep than the Beckhorn. After a long day on the trail, most hikers prefer to take the Beckhorn Trail, which is marked, along with Hunter's Pass.
Snowshoeing and winter
Snowshoeing Dix Mountain is a fine adventure as any, but comes with a few challenges. If starting from Elk Lake, hikers will need to use the lot at Clear Pond, adding an additional 4- miles RT to their hike. Deep snow, narrow paths, and wet snow on overhanging trees are all obstacles on this hike in winter. Please pack snowshoes, microspikes or trail crampons, and all the winter essential gear. Expect a significant drop in temperature as elevation is gained, and be prepared for strong winds on the open summit. Always bring extra layers, especially for higher elevations, and don't hesitate to turn around if the weather starts to turn.