A total of 30 primitive tent sites have
been identified along with three lean-tos. Camping
at large is permitted 150' of any road, trail, spring, stream, pond
or body of water. Please, all campsites shall be restored to
its natural state and all evidence removed. "Pack it out"
Please subscribe to the "Leave-No-Trace TM"
Camping above 3,000' is
prohibited including no campfires at ANY time above 4,000'.
This area is fragile and to be respected. Portable gas stoves
are preferred for the environment. Those broken limbs may make
a nice fire; but they also house insects for the local aviary
population. Other common sense rules: * no
glass containers (except necessary for prescribed medicines).
* no motorized equipment, * no use of soap or detergent in any
body of water. * no the use of audio devices which is audible
outside the immediate area of the campsite. * dispose of food
scraps. * respect the signage for others.
IAATAP maintains a full directory of
Camping, to explore nearby camping areas,
DEC regulation requires that groups of ten or more
persons camping on state land obtain a permit from a
forest ranger. DEC policy prohibits issuing group
camping permits to groups wanting to camp on forest
preserve lands in the Adirondacks that are
classified as wilderness, primitive or canoe area.
This policy was developed to protect natural
resources, the primeval character of the area and
exceptional wilderness experiences for all
recreationists, and follows Leave No Trace
practices. Except for the eastern High Peaks
Wilderness, Pharaoh Lake Wilderness and the William
C. Whitney Wilderness, where the group size is 8,
camping groups in wilderness, primitive and canoe
area lands are limited to 9 people or less.
Adirondacks is rich in bird life. Visit our
Directory when you have time. By the NY State's
Unit Management Plan, the following species are under study, we have
summarized their findings. Pictures and links provided by
According to the NY
Breeding Bird Atlas, 123 species are believed to breed within the
Dix Mountain Wilderness. Summits above 2,800' are
protected by the NY State Bird Conservation Area Program and the
Adirondack Subalpine Forest Bird Conservation Area. The most
concerned aviary species for this region is the Bicknell's Thrush. The
endangered birds in the Dix Mountain Wilderness are:
In 1974 New York initiated a program to reintroduce
Peregrine Falcon in the state. Peregrines were successfully
hacked in the Adirondack Park with the release of the first birds in
1981. It is possible that Peregrines are utilizing the mountain
cliffs for nesting. Three basic requirements nesting
Peregrine Falcons include open country for hunting, sufficient food
resources of avian species, and steep, rocky cliff faces for
nesting. The falcons typically nest 50 to 200 feet off the ground
near bodies of water. Nesting sites for Peregrines usually include a
partially-vegetated ledge large enough for it young to move about.
The nest is a well-rounded shape that is sometimes lined with grass,
usually sheltered by an overhang. Sometimes Peregrines may nest in
old Common Raven nests. Human disturbance of a
breeding pair may result in nest abandonment! "DO NOT DISTURB"
please! Climbers, not it is illegal to climb during their
breeding season, and breeders will attack. To report a
falcon signings please contact NYSDEC Region 5, Bureau of Wildlife,
P.O. Box 296, Ray Brook, New York 12977, 518-897-1291.
Thrush utilizes fir waves and natural disturbances as
well as edges of ski slopes. They breed in the Adirondacks at
elevations greater than 2800 ft. The species is most
common on the highest ridges of the Adirondacks, preferring young or
stunted dense stands of balsam fir up to 9 ft. in height.
Common Loon is a species of special concern and are located through
out the Adirondacks They use small and large freshwater lakes in
open and densely forested areas for breeding and nest on lakes
(mostly less habited lakes). The Loons will use little shallow coves
for nesting which are constructed on the ground at the water’s edge
on sand or rock, wherever to avoided predators. Small islands are
their favorite or small peninsular.
Sand Pond has been designated as important habitat for the Loon.
Please do not disturb.
Nighthawks will either use bare flat rocks or bare ground in open fields
and pastures, and if in populated areas they may use flat, gravel
rooftops. Here in the Adirondacks, the nighthawks will use the
mountainous areas, provided woods are interspersed with clearings or
openings. They are nocturnal and have a particular call (click
Eastern Blue Bird
Other aviary species spotted in
the Dix Mountain Wilderness region
eagle, osprey, peregrine falcon, northern raven, ring-necked duck,
common goldeneye, common merganser, northern three-toed woodpecker,
gray jay, boreal chickadee, ruby-crowned kinglet, Philadelphia
vireo, olive-sided flycatcher, yellow-bellied flycatcher, Tennessee
warbler, northern Parula warbler, Cape May warbler, bay-breasted
warbler, blackpoll warbler, Bicknell’s thrush, Swainson’s thrush,
Lincoln’s sparrow, rusty blackbird, evening grosbeak.
Wild Species of
Spotted Salamander (Ambystoma
Spotted Salamander have two rows of yelloish orange spots that
run along the back side. They make their home in hardwood
forest area and spend most of its time below the surface, under
leaves or burrows; and use nearby ponds for breeding in the
Spring. They have poison glands around their back and
neck, to release as protection against their predators.
This toxin is harmless to humans. They are nocturnal
The wood turtle is found in well oxygenated
good quality streams with sandy-pebbly substrates that are deep
enough so that they do not freeze during hibernation Ideal
habitat includes dense alder swamp and forested wetland habitat
bordering the streams where the turtles can bask and have
protection from predators. Wood turtles forge for fungi
and vegetation. Wood turtles select both slopes and level
sandy open areas for nest sites. They are listed as species of
interest because of the long maturity rate (15 years) and high
Chapel Pond is the largest
pond in the Dix Mountain Wilderness being 19 acres.
Dix Mountain Wilderness has 11 ponded bodies of water and 179
designated wetlands (or 997.3 acres along the West Mill and Walker
Brooks drains, and the head of Upper Ausable Lake and near Elk
Lake). The wetlands are important deer wintering areas.
The most frequented fishing spots include Chapel and Round Pond.
Dix Mountain Wilderness ponds are: Cranberry Pond, Lilypad,
Rhododendron Pond, Round Pond, Chapel Pond. Visit our
Directory for more information.
New York Codes Rules and
Regulations (“NYCRR”) §190.8(n) authorizes the use of state
owned lands by horses and equestrians. However, the use of
horses on designated foot trails is prohibited unless the trail
is also specifically designated as a horse trail. Horse trails
in a Wilderness area to: “those that can be developed by
conversion of appropriate abandoned roads, snowmobile trails, or
state truck trails.” While Six Mountain is too steep for
equestrian travel, many of our regions are. Consult your DEC trail map. Visit our
Directory for other areas.
& paddling into the
region for weeks of hunting. The game species found in
the Dix Mountain Wilderness include white-tailed
deer, moose, black bear, coyote, bobcat, raccoon, red fox,
gray fox, fisher, marten, mink, muskrat, striped skunk,
river otter, beaver, porcupine, and varying hare. The
deer population has decreased due to the severe winters.
backcountry acreage is enormous and the Adirondacks has the largest
trail system in the nation with more than 2,000 miles. Enjoy
the glory of hiking the Adirondacks, nature's solitude, unbroken
forest, lakes and mountains and take the path less taken.
Focus on your senses. Click
for the DEC "Lost in the Woods" brochure.
Adirondack Hiking Guide.
The DEC trail classification system is outlined in
the Forest Preserve Policy Manual. This classification system
recognizes four trail classifications as outlined below:
Distinguishable: Minimal biological or physical impacts,
slight loss of vegetation and/or minimal disturbance of
Impacts: Tail obvious, slight loss of vegetation cover
and/or organic litter pulverized in primary use areas,
muddy spots or tree roots, or water action evident.
Impacts: Vegetation cover and/or organic littler
pulverized within the center of the tread, exposed rocks
and trees or small mud holes, but little evidence of
widening beyond the maintained width of the trail.
Impacts: Near complete or total loss of vegetation cover
and organic litter, rocks or tree roots exposed and
roots damaged, or ruts more than 20cm (7.8 inches) deep,
or widening caused by muddy areas or water action
Extensive Impacts: Trail to bedrock or other substrate,
or tree roots badly damaged, or some ruts more than 50
cm (19.5 inches) deep or large areas (over 50%) of bank
erosion, or mud holes so extensive that the trail is
outside of its maintained width.
Most trails are
marked with color coded disks affixed to trees
as shown (see left). Trail guides and maps
correspond to these markers. Trail register
boxes are generally located near major access
points and parking areas. Although most
state-maintained trails are marked, hikers are
encouraged to consult topographical maps or
other guides when planning to venture into the
for the DEC "Lost in the Woods" brochure.
There are only
five developed trails in the his region.
Climbing the trail-less peaks are popular and
easily accessible by Route 73 (6.1 mile) and
three access points along the Northway at
Lindsay Brook, Wet Mill Brook and Walker Brook.
One of the most trail-less trips is the Dix
Mountain as a day trip or overnight.
Trailhead registers are Elk Lake, Round Pond,
Weston Trail, Stimson Trail and AMR Lake Road.
Favorite Scenic hiker summits:
Dix Range, Nippletop, Noonmark, Bearn Den and points along the
Boquet River. Artists continue to be stimulated by this area
for their works. Names like Elliot Porter, Albert Gates,
Nathan Farb, Carl Heilman II and many others. Yester-year painters included: Charles Cromwell Ingham, Thomas
Cole, Asher B.Durand, Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait, Samuel Colman,
Alexander Helwig Wyant, and Winslow Homer.
Your pet dog also enjoy a nice day
hike, but do remember to pick up after them, and an encountered with
a dog off lease can result in a lawsuit and fines. Dogs may
not be left unattended, and must have proof of a valid rabies
inoculation. Hunting dogs (with license number) are except
from the lease rules during hunting season.
Follow those have gone before:
Motorized Equipment in Wilderness, Primitive and Canoe Areas:
DEC has adopted a regulation prohibiting the use of motorized
equipment in lands classified as wilderness, primitive or canoe.
Public use of small personal electronic or mechanical devices such
as cameras, radios or GPS receivers are not affected by this new
Rock & Ice Climbing
Dix Wilderness rock climbing is very popular with about nine
distinct climbing areas such as: the west side of
Route 73 in the vicinity of Chapel Pond. The attractions include the
cliffs adjacent to Chapel Pond, “Beer Walls” (Chapel Pond
Pass) and the “King Philip Wall." The “Beer Walls” are the most
highly–used climbing area in the Adirondack Forest Preserve due to
the ease of access from the highway. “The Empress” rising from the
Chapel Pond slab is arguably the most popular friction climbing
route in the Adirondack Park. The King Philip area provides several
easy instructional routes that are popular with youth camps.
Placements of bolts or
fixed anchors which involved drilling for defacing the rock is a
violation. Use the established fixed anchors on
Forest Preserve lands.
Due to the limited number of climbing routes
suitable for group instructional purposes one large group routinely
can monopolize all the suitable “top-rope” routes in an area. Often
single individuals from these climbing groups will hike in to a
climbing area in advance of the remainder of the group to “claim” use
of favored top-rope climbs by establishing belay systems, effective
excluding any other individuals or groups from using those routes.
All rock climbing groups are
limited to the maximum size of 10 persons and limited to utilizing a
maximum of three roped climbing routes at any given time.
Route 73 Highway pull off's.
The present parking areas
indicates a parking capacity for trailheads is 194 cars,
distributed among 13 parking areas. This includes parking
at the Zander Scott Trailhead, which serves both the Zander
Scott trail to Giant Mt, in the GMWA and rock climbers using the
cliffs at the eastern side of Chapel Pond. Parking at the
Ausable Club serves users of both the DMWA and HPWA, as well as
users who will not be venturing off the easement trails at the
Ausable Mountain Reserve.
Adirondack Mountain Club
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Regulation/Backcountry Law Enforcement
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