Dial & Nippletop, Backpack
Trailhead Elev: 1339'
Dial- 4020' #7
Nippletop- 4620' #8
Avg Elev Gain/mi.- 280'
Max Elev Gain/mi.-1,000'
Weather: Partly sunny to cloudy. Warm and humid. Light winds on summits, very light drizzle at times. Light intermittent drizzle 1st night. Lows in the mid 50s.
Day 1- 9 mi.
4 hrs to the top of Dial, 6 hrs to the summit of Nippletop
- Moderate ascents interspersed with a few steeper sections. The ascents into and out of the saddles made for a tough first day. Trail pretty dry up to Bear Den/Dial saddle. Water available along the E branch of the Ausable along Lake Rd.
- Beautiful forest scenery, great views of Dix and the Great Range from Bear Den & Dial. Nippletop summit view of the Great Range was spectacular.
- Lat mile of trail up to Nippletop was very muddy. Descent to campsite in Elk Pass was heinous. Steep and wet.
- Two viable campsites in Elk Pass. Ground was saturated. Mud galore. Elk Pond water quality was pretty good. Camp at site nearest trail.
Day 2- 5 mi.
- Easy descent back down to Lake Rd. from Elk Pass. Partly sunny to cloudy. Gorgeous scenery through foggy, fairy tale forests of Spruce and Fir. Gil brook was a BEAUTY! Some of the best, post card perfect pools at the base of several cascades. Too bad the AMR prohibits swimming :( All of these can be found along the trail within half a mile of Artist's Falls.
Wildlife: White Tailed Deer, Brook Trout, Black Capped Chickadee.