Gee Brook State Forest
- Open for recreation: Year-round
- Fee: Free
- Contact Information:
- DEC Region 7 Cortland Office: (607) 753-3095 M-F 8 am- 4 pm, email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Emergency, Law Enforcement & Rangers: (518) 408-5850 or 911
- Location: Cincinnatus, Cortland County
- Wildlife Management Unit: 7M
- Map: View Gee Brook State Forest Map || View Gee Brook State Forest Map in (PDF, 762 MB) || Google Earth || State Lands Interactive Mapper || Calico Pond Camping Map || Calico Pond Camping Map (PDF, 500 KB)
Gee Brook State Forest encompasses 878 acres. It is a small but popular area that offers a variety of recreational activities including hunting, fishing, hiking, camping, bird watching, nature viewing and snowmobiling. Gee Brook is named for the beautiful sparkling creek that gently flows through the peaceful forest.
Informal foot trails are located along the stream and ponds. There are also two Public Forest Access Roads (Ace of Spades Rd. and Calico Pond Rd.) that provide entry into each of the respective north and south portions of the property. Nature observers and hunters can also enjoy the many species of plants and animals throughout this heavily forested area.
General information on primitive camping includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.
Camping is allowed at Calico Pond at designated sites, by permit only. Permits are available through the forest ranger or the Cortland DEC office, call 607-674-4017. The access bridge leading to Calico Pond over Gee Brook no longer provides vehicular access, although it is maintained as a foot bridge. An informational map of the camping area and its three camping sites is available.
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 paddling includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.
General information on fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules & regulations.
Calico Pond, provides six acres of fishing opportunities and is loaded with pickerel, largemouth bass, perch, and of course Calico bass, for which the pond is named.
Hunting & Trapping
General information on snowmobiling includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.
There is a short snowmobile trail located on the south end of the forest.
General information on animals includes links to information about birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians and insects that inhabit or migrate through the state.
Gee Brook State Forest is divided into two main sections. The northern section may be accessed by taking NY Route 41 to Piety Road. The Calico Pond Public Forest Access Road is directly across from the intersection, and parking is available, but limited to the shoulder of the road. The southern section can be accessed by taking NY Route 41 to Gee Brook Road, and then Gee Brook Road to the Ace of Spades Public Forest Access Road. Again, parking is limited, but available along the shoulder of the road
Calico Pond Parking Lot (42.52869°N, 75.934151°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 Gee Brook State Forest
Gee Brook State Forest is part of the Taylor Valley 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. If you have questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us email@example.com.
Article 9, Titles 5 and 7, of the Environmental Conservation Law authorizes 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.
Like many of the state forests, Gee Brook was originally cleared for agricultural purposes by early European settlers and Revolutionary War Veterans. When the soil proved to be unfit for farming, the land was abandoned and sold to the state for reforestation in the 1930's. The forest still provides diverse ecological, economic, and recreational services for many, and informal camping continues to be enjoyed within the forest. DEC foresters are charged with the responsibility of managing State Forests to enhance and maintain a diverse and healthy forest ecosystem for society and wildlife. It is the hope of the Department that the beauty of the forest, as well as its many services, will continue to be enjoyed for many generations.
Nearby Amenities and Attractions
Cortland County Tourism Office (Leaves DEC website)
Gas, food, dining and lodging may be found in the nearby communities of Whitney Point and Cortland.
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.