Hex Mountain Snowshoe, Hex Mountain — Saturday, May. 3, 2008
A sunny day and a long slog are rewarded by 360 degree view of snow capped mountains. The snow has melted out a lot. We started on bare road with occasionally snow patches, and were still crossing numerous bare patches up until we entered the forest near to the top. As you will see from other reports the hardest part of the hike is finding the start. Just past the Newport Creek sign you will see a road sign Newport Creek Dr, also a developers notice board for Newport Creek developments. About 100 ft up the road is a yellow gate. This is the start of the trail. The snow has gone from the roadside now so it is easy to find parking. We could not see any FR116 road sign. The area around the start of the trail has been prepped for development,with multiple side roads and telephone cable boxes. However nothing has been built in the last 4 years since we last hiked here. The multiple roads, which are not on the map, make following FR 116 highly confusing. As before we got a way off route, but with map and gps we ended up heading cross country until we regained the trail. I strongly recommend a good map and gps. Based on our return trip I believe the correct trail is as follows, after 1/4 mile the main road bends to the left. Looking straight ahead there is a single pine and to the right of it going straight ahead is a seemingly smaller road. Yesterday that trail was snow covered, unlike the main road. Go straight ahead here and then follow the road to the left at the next junction about another 100 yds on. The start of the trail off FR 116 is clearly signed. From here the route finding is simple, just follow the ridge. We decided to snow shoe up after entering the forest since we had carried them this far, but they weren't necessary. Finally when you are almost at the top you head right for the final 1/4 mile to the top. Just before the top you break out of the trees and climb to the peak. The views are amazing, looking out to the Enchantments to the NE and Mt Daniels to the NW. The return trip is fast. We descended in under half the time it took us to climb.