Kasoag 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: Williamstown, Oswego County
- Wildlife Management Unit:6K
- Map: View Kasoag State Forest Map || View Same Map in PDF (164 KB) || Google Earth || State Lands Interactive Mapper
Kasoag State Forest encompasses 909 acres. While it is remote and somewhat primitive, it is a great place for activities that can be enjoyed in a remote forest setting such as hiking, hunting, trapping and fishing. Fish Creek and Indian Camp Brook join within the property to form a diverse swamp habitat that attracts many different rare and common species of plants and wildlife.
General information on hiking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.
There is also one short hiking trail on the forest. Hiking is also allowed anywhere on the property unless posted otherwise.
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.
The West Branch of Fish Creek and Indian Camp Brook traverse through Kasoag State Forest. Brook trout and rainbow trout are quite common here, and many anglers come to the forest to enjoy a relaxing day with their poles.
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.
Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are permitted on all hiking trails and anywhere on the property unless posted otherwise.
General information on animals includes links to information about birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians and insects that inhabit or migrate through the state.
General information on accessible recreation includes links to other locations with accessible recreation opportunities and information on permits for motorized access.
There is a short section of trail that allows motorized access for people with mobility impairments. A permit is required through the Motorized Access Program for People with Disabilities. The trail is about 1/4 mile in length heading southwesterly from CC Road toward Fish Creek.
Kasoag State Forest is accessed by taking NY I-81 to exit #34. Continue toward NY Route 104 east. At the intersection with NY Route 13 bear right, then take an immediate left onto NY Route 30a. Continue for approximately 1.0 mile and turn left onto NY Route 30. Follow Route 30 for another 1.0 mile and then turn onto CC Road. In approximately 1.0 mile you will enter the forest, parking is available but limited to the shoulder of the road.
CC Road (43.4638747°N, 75.9064171°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 Kasoag State Forest
In the near future Kasoag State Forest, along with Orton Hollow State Forest, Stone Hill State Forest, and Klondike State Forest, will be part of the Fish Creek 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.
Kasoag State Forest is comprised of mature natural hardwood and northern hardwood-hemlock cover types. The predominant species include red maple, black cherry, white ash, sugar maple and hemlock. There are also conifer plantations throughout the forest consisting of mainly white pine, red pine, and larch and spruce plantations that were mostly planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930's. It is a locally held belief that the CCC built a camp adjacent to Indian Camp Brook, and evidence of a small man-made pond exists there that seemingly testifies to this truth.
Of particular significance, glacial features known as eskers can be found within the property. These are narrow, sinuous, steep-sided ridges that are only found in areas that were once glaciated. Those in Kasoag State Forest can often be found through and alongside wooded areas. 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. As such, forest management is strategically employed to develop a balanced mix of young, middle-aged, and old (late successional) forest types.
The land that is now Kasoag State Forest was originally formed millions of years ago as massive glaciers that had once covered the region began to recede. The last glacier, the Wisconsin Glacier receded twelve thousand years leaving behind, shale and sandstone rocks, giving the area its defining moderately rocky and highly acidic characteristics. The forest is located in the Tug Hill Plateau region of New York State.
Unfortunately for many farmers in the area, soil and weather conditions are not fit for intensive agriculture. Excessive erosion and prolonged freezing and wet periods made farming very difficult. As rail and waterways expanded, access to better crop land was more easily obtained, causing many farmers to abandon their properties in New York in search of greener, warmer land in the Midwest.
The State Reforestation Law of 1929 and the Hewitt Amendment of 1931 set forth new legislation that authorized the Conservation Department to acquire land, by gift or purchase, for reforestation areas. These State Forests, consisting of no less than 500 acres of contiguous land were to be "forever devoted to reforestation and the establishment and maintenance thereon of forests for watershed protection, the production of timber and other forest products, recreation and kindred purposes" (Article 9, Title 5, Environmental Conservation Law).
The majority of Kasoag State Forest was purchased by the state under this program in parcels during the 1930's. During this period, lands that had once been cleared of timber for farm land was restored to forests. The planting of trees created new job opportunities for hundreds of young men, and Kasoag State Forest today provides diverse ecological, recreational, and economic benefits for both society and wildlife.
Nearby Amenities and Attractions
Oswego County Tourism Office (Leaves DEC website)
Gas, food, dining and lodging may be found in the nearby communities of Pulaski.
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.