East Otto State Forest
- Open for Recreation: Year-round
- Fee: Free
- Contact Information:
- DEC Region 9 Allegany Office: 716-372-0645 (M-F, 8:00AM - 4:00PM); email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Emergency, Law Enforcement & Rangers: 1-877-457-5680 or 911
- Location: Towns of East Otto and Otto, Cattaraugus County
- Wildlife Management Unit: 9M
- Map: View East Otto State Forest Map || View Same Map in PDF (208 KB) || Google Earth || State Lands Interactive Mapper
East Otto State Forest covers 1,354 acres. The most common recreational use of this area is hunting and camping. It contains a mix of sizes and species of trees and also has manmade ponds and wetlands. The area has been managed to provide young forest habitat. No formal trails exist on the property but old skid trails and farm roads provide some opportunities for hiking.
Stickney Pond on Kriedeman Forest Road
in East Otto State Forest
Hunting and Trapping
Hunting and trapping are permitted on the property in accordance with all game regulations, unless otherwise posted. Traps may not be set on public road right of ways. Body gripping traps set on land must be at least 100 feet from public trails.
General information on primitive camping includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
Camping is allowed at 14 designated tent sites along Kriedeman Forest Road that are available on a first come first serve basis and which are marked with a yellow camp disk (see picture at right). These sites are numbered and have a primitive fire ring. There are no out house facilities. The Kriedeman Forest Road area receives heavy camping activity during the summer months, so camping is allowed only at designated sites to reduce environmental impact to the area. Parking is allowed at the entrance to each site but not beyond that.
On other parts of the property, individuals may set up camp at any location which is at least 150 feet from water bodies, streams, roads or trails. Camping for more than three nights or in a group 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 and regulations.
Stickney Pond on Kriedeman Forest Road and Utley Brook in the northeastern part of the forest are used for fishing.
Cross-country Skiing and Snowshoeing
General information on cross-country skiing and snowshoeing includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
All roads and old skid trails may be used for skiing and snowshoeing.
General information on biking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
This is not a major activity on this property, but forest roads may be used.
General information on horseback riding includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
This is not a major activity on this property, but forest roads may be used.
General information on accessible recreation includes links to other locations with accessible recreation opportunities and information on permits for motorized access.
Individuals with disabilities can apply for a Motorized Access Permit for People With Disabilities (MAPPWD) to use a motor vehicle on designated roads within the state forest.
From East Otto, take County Route 12 west and turn right onto Utley Road, then left onto Traffic Street. The culvert on Traffic Street is out of service, so access is best from the east end of Traffic Street.
All coordinates provided are in decimal degrees using NAD83/WGS84 datum.
- Traffic Street Parking Area (42.425199°N, 78.778198°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
- Kriedeman Forest Road First Spur Parking Area (42.439276°N, 78.780969°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
- Kriedeman Forest Road Second Spur Parking Area #1 (42.436919°N, 78.784718°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
- Kriedeman Forest Road Second Spur Parking Area #2 (42.437588°N, 78.784351°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
- Stickney Pond Parking Area (42.437994°N, 78.790715°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
- Kriedeman Forest Road Third Spur Parking Area (42.438339°N, 78.793071°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
- Kriedeman Forest Road End Parking Area (42.440478°N, 78.793885°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
Rules, Regulations & 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 East Otto State Forest
DEC is developing a management plan which will describe the management activities for these lands. In addition to management objectives, the UMP will contain detailed information on natural features, recreational infrastructure, geology, natural and human history, habitats, wildlife, fisheries and much more.
State Forests are managed for multiple uses. Forest management provides raw materials for New York's forest products industry, a source of employment and income for many New Yorkers. They are managed for wildlife by creating and maintaining various habitats for species such as deer, rabbit, grouse and turkey. They are also managed for recreational opportunities and watershed protection.
Conifer - The stands of pine were planted in old farm fields as they need open areas with direct sunlight to thrive. These will be converted to hardwoods by removing the conifer overstory and allowing the hardwood seedlings that usually exist in these stands to grow into a new hardwood forest.
Hardwood - Hardwood trees are not usually planted as they spread vast amounts of seed and naturally regenerate. Thinning of the forest through the sale of forest products gives the residual trees more growing space. This helps to keep the forest healthy and provides openings for new seedlings, a revolving supply of food and cover for wildlife, and future crop trees. Some stands will contain large trees that appear to be old growth. This is almost always not the case. These stands were harvested prior to state ownership or managed during state ownership to favor large trees. Many other stands are mature and ready to regenerate. Thinning stands and removing the overstory promotes regeneration of new seedlings. Forest stands that are dominated by species that require direct sunlight for reproduction are managed in this way. Some small experimental clear cuts were done on this property. The regeneration of the experimental clear cut area was successful. It has been proven that this regeneration method will work on this state forest. Forest stands that contain oak species may require the use of fire or other types of disturbance to maintain this forest type.
In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) carried out forestry projects on this property. The CCC, established by the administration of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, provided employment for young men during the Great Depression. Projects included the planting of thousands of pine, larch and spruce trees in the open areas on the property.
This property was mostly farm land at one time. A cheese factory, which was common place before the invention of refrigeration, was located on this property as well. The transportation of milk over great distances was not routine as it is today. In order to bring milk to market, it was made into cheese, which was easier to transport and store.
Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information
State Lands and Facilities
Gas, lodging, food and other supplies and dining opportunities can be found in the nearby communities of Gowanda and Springville.
Cattaraugus County Tourism (leaves DEC website) can provide information about other recreation, attractions and amenities in this area.
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.