Frozen Ocean State Forest
- Open for recreation: Year-round (unless otherwise noted)
- Fee: Free
- Contact Information:
- Location: Niles, Cayuga County
- Wildlife Management Unit: 7J
- Map: View Frozen Ocean State Forest Map || View Same Map in PDF (141 KB) || Google Earth || State Lands Interactive Mapper
Frozen Ocean State Forest encompasses 754 acres of land. There are no trails on this state forest. Recreational activities are limited to hunting, fishing, trapping and primitive camping. Situated on one of the highest points in the county, Frozen Ocean is well known for receiving more than its fair share of freezing winds in the winter.
There are no formal trails, but hiking is allowed anywhere on the property.
General information on primitive camping includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations
At-large primitive camping is allowed. Campsites must be at least 150 feet away from the nearest road, trail, or body of water. Camping for more than three nights or in groups of ten or more requires a permit from a Forest Ranger.
General information on fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules & regulations
Hunting & Trapping
Cross-country Skiing & Snowshoeing
General information on cross-country skiing and snowshoeing includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations
There are no groomed trails but cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are allowed anywhere on the property.
General information on animals includes links to information about birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians and insects that inhabit or migrate through the state.
Frozen Ocean State Forest may be accessed by taking NY Route 38A to Twelve Corners Road and then turn left onto Grange Hall Road. Travel for about 0.3 miles and then turn left onto Corrigan Road. Travel about 0.8 miles on Corrigan Road to the beginning of the forest. There is also access to the forest by continuing on Grange Hall Road and turning left onto Quarry Road.
Quarry Road (42.7910362°N, 76.4321148°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
Rules, Regulations and Outdoor Safety
Practice Leave No Trace (leaves DEC website) principles when recreating on state land to enjoy the outdoors responsibly, minimize impact on the natural resources and avoid conflicts with other users.
How We Manage Frozen Ocean State Forest
Article 9, Titles 5 and 7, of the Environmental Conservation Law authorize the Department of Environmental Conservation to manage lands acquired outside the Adirondack and Catskill Parks. Management, as defined by these laws, includes watershed protection, the production of timber and other forest products, recreation and kindred purposes.
The majority of the land in Frozen Ocean State Forest was acquired by the state in purchases made during the 1930's, but also as recently as the 1990's. The name is said to have originated from the fact that during the winter season, extremely cold winds sweep across the land turning the woods into endless stretches of frozen forest, the way that the ocean stretches endlessly across the horizon seemingly frozen in time.
Frozen Ocean State Forest is part of the Hewitt-Cayuga Highlands Unit Management Plan. A Unit Management Plan (UMP) guides the DEC's land management activities on several geographically related forests for a ten-year period, although a number of goals and objectives in the plan focus on a much longer time period. Each UMP addresses specific objectives and actions for public use and forest management. A copy of the plan is available in the Lands and Forests Office in Cortland. If you have questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us firstname.lastname@example.org.
The forest's protective cover types, including northern hardwood, hemlock, European and Japanese larch, Norway spruce, red pine and white spruce, provide a wide range of diverse habitats that allow for many species to call this area "home." The forest's primitive nature provides excellent hunting and trapping opportunities, as well as true "roughing it" camping experiences.
Two ponds glisten in the woods creating not only a visual relief from the endless stretches of trees, but also a wonderful environment in which to cast a line. They attract much of the local wildlife, and there are usually plenty of beautiful plants and wildflowers to please any nature observer's eye.
Nearby Amenities and Attractions
Gas, food, dining and lodging may be found in the nearby community of Auburn.
Numerous guide books and maps are available with information on the lands, waters, trails and other recreational facilities in this area. These can be purchased at most outdoor equipment retailers, bookstores, and on-line booksellers.
Additional information, outdoor equipment, trip suggestions and guided or self-guided tours may be obtained from outdoor guide and outfitting businesses. Check area chambers of commerce, telephone directories or search the internet for listings.
Consider hiring an outdoor guide if you have little experience or woodland skills. See the NYS Outdoor Guides Association (leaves DEC website) for information on outdoor guides.