The only way I could make sense of this was that one goes through the gate onto the fire road. The trail to the right of the gate puts you on a different route up the mountain, and I believe it does not head straight up the saddle. Everything else after that made sense, though.
Yes, these directions are horrible. They need to be updated.
If you take the trail to the right of the gate, you go SE for 3 miles to Armstrong's Pass, at which point you are no closer to Freel than when you started.
Instead, walk along the road past the gate. Keep left at the Y. The trail will narrow and eventually become insanely sandy and steep -- the sand makes the ascent twice as difficult as it would be otherwise.
BTW, 5.5 miles round-trip is also baloney. :-)