Pine Hill State Forest
Alert: Log Slide Trail is currently closed due to an active timber sale. It will be re-opened upon further notice.
- Open for Recreation: Year-round
- Fee: Free
- Contact Information:
- DEC Region 9 Allegany Office: 716-372-0645 (M-F, 8:30AM - 4:00PM); firstname.lastname@example.org
- Emergency, Law Enforcement & Rangers: 1-877-457-5680 or 911
- Location: Towns of Randolph and South Valley, Cattaraugus County
- Wildlife Management Unit: 9R
- Map: View Pine Hill State Forest Map || View Same Map in PDF (392 KB) || View Horse Trail Map || View Horse Trail Map in PDF (1.65 MB) || Google Earth || State Lands Interactive Mapper
Pine Hill State Forest totals 1,139 acres. The most common recreational uses of this area are hunting, hiking, horseback riding, and snowmobiling.
In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps, or CCC, carried out various projects at Pine Hill State Forest. The CCC, established by the administration of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, provided employment opportunities for young men during the Great Depression. Projects included road construction and the planting of thousands of pine, larch and spruce trees in the open areas on the property.
Pine Hill State Forest has a number of old fields that were planted with conifer trees. When trees were planted in old fields, grass fires were always a threat to the new plantation. Rock-lined water holes were created to provide a water supply for fire fighting, and in some instances tree watering. One of these water holes still exists on the property.
For more history on this unit, visit the Painted Hills Genealogy Society (leaves DEC website) includes cemetery records and local history.
General information on hiking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
There are no specifically designated hiking trails on the property but all horse trails can be used for hiking during dry times of the year.
General information on horseback riding includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
Log Slide Trail is CLOSED due to logging activity. "Trail closed" signs are posted and a re-route is marked in red and white striped flagging. Information about the re-route can be found at the Pineapple Junction trailhead.
Horseback riding is a popular activity on this
state forest unit.
The New York State Horse Council (leaves DEC website) maintains a trail system on this unit that connects with neighboring South Valley State Forest. A large parking lot has been constructed at what locals call "Pineapple Junction" off Carr Corners Road. Space is available for a number of large horse trailers. This area can also be used for camping with self-contained units.
The horse trails can be used for hiking during dry times of the year. The long-term goal is to develop a multiple-use trail that is good for hiking as well as horseback riding. These trails are a work in progress and take many hours of volunteer labor. The New York State Horse Council has been working to expand the trail system to cover more of this State Forest. Trails are planned to minimize impacts to the forest environment and to not conflict with other management objectives while providing a pleasant and interesting ride.
Keep in mind that some parts of the trail system may be closed due to wet and muddy weather or active tree harvest operations. If this happens, the trail will be posted at the entrance with a "trail closed" sign and an alternate route will be posted if available.
Proof of current negative Coggins certificate is required for all horses and out-of-state horse owners are required to produce a 30-day health certificate.
Coordinators of organized trail events must obtain a Temporary Revocable Permit prior to the event. These can be obtained at DEC's Allegany office and by calling 716-372-0645.
General information on snowmobiling includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
Part of the Cattaraugus County snowmobile trail system runs through this forest on Pierce Run Road, which dead ends at the Horseshoe Inn in Onoville. This trail is maintained by the Elibomwons Snowmobile Club (leaves DEC website). For more information, Cattaruagus County Tourism (leaves DEC website) has trail maps and other information.
Hunting is allowed on Pine Hill State Forest. Terrain can be rugged in some areas so walking up and down hills will be part of the hunting experience.
Trapping is 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 fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules and regulations.
Fishing is allowed at two small ponds in the eastern part of the forest. They are located south of Carr Corners Road near the intersection with Sarver Road.
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.
The horse trails on the north part of this unit near Pineapple Junction are suitable for cross-country skiing. Trails to the south end of the property have steeper slopes.
General information on biking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
There are no specifically designated bike trails on this property but forest roads can be used.
General information on primitive camping includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.
Campsites are available on a first come, first serve basis at Pineapple Junction. If there is a large horse trail riding event, these sites are in high demand and one may not be available. Other campsites exist on the property near roads and are designated by yellow "Camp Here" signs (see picture at right). These are available off of Hotchkiss Ridge Forest Road, Sarver Road, Carr Corners Road and Oldro Hill Road.
At-large backcountry camping is also 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.
From Route 86, take Exit 16 and drive east on Main Street, then turn right on Larkin Street. Drive to the end of Larkin Street and turn right onto Archer Hill Road. When you reach Pine Hill Road turn left and follow this to Pierce Run Road which continues to the left. The State Forest begins at this intersection. To get to Pineapple Junction, turn left onto Carr Corners Road. Pineapple Junction and Hotchkiss Ridge Forest Road are at the top of the hill.
To reach the Pineapple Junction parking area when towing a horse trailer, use either Pierce Run Road or Sarver Road; do not use Oldro Hill Road (which turns into Carr Corners Road at the intersection with Sarver Road) due to poor road conditions for horse trailers. Sarver Road is a climb in places but it is paved to the Carr Corners Road intersection, making for a smooth transport. Pierce Run Road is gravel and is suitable for horse trailers but can be muddy during certain times of the year.
All coordinates provided are in decimal degrees using NAD83/WGS84 datum.
Rules, Regulations and Outdoor Safety
Practice Leave No Trace Principles (leaves DEC website) when recreating on state land to enjoy the outdoors responsibly, minimize impact on the natural resources and avoid conflicts with other users.
All users of Pine Hill State Forest must follow all State Land Use Regulations and should follow all Outdoor Safety Practices for the safety of the user and protection of the resource.
How We Manage Pine Hill State Forest
DEC has developed a Draft Cattaraugus Unit Management Plan which describes the proposed management activities for these lands. In addition to management objectives, the UMP contains detailed information on natural features, recreational infrastructure, geology, natural and human history, habitats, wildlife, fisheries and much more.
Pine Hill State Forest is managed for multiple uses such as public recreation, timber production, wildlife habitat and watershed protection.
The forests in this unit are under a sustainable management program designed to produce timber crops, maintain diverse wildlife habitat and provide recreational opportunities while protecting water quality and aesthetics. As an added bonus, many access roads and trails are created on this unit while implementing various timber management practices. These access improvements are widely used by recreationalists to access this remote property.
The stands of pine, spruce and larches were originally planted in old abandoned farm fields, as a conservation measure in the 1930s to control soil and water runoff. These conifers are usually managed by a series of partial thinnings followed at the end of the growing cycle by an overstory removal. The previous thinnings allow the necessary sunlight into the forest stand to encourage the growth of native hardwood seedlings. The removal of the overstory in the final harvest allows the hardwood seedlings to grow toward maturity. The conifer wood is used for construction lumber, poles and pulp.
The vast majority of this forest is made up of native hardwoods trees which regenerate naturally on site. Periodic thinnings are prescribed for these hardwood forests through the sale of forest products to improve growing space for the remaining trees. This helps to keep the forest healthy while providing openings for new seedling growth, a constant supply of food for wildlife and a source of future forests.
Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information
State Lands and Facilities
Gas can be found in the nearby communities of Falconer, Frewsburg, Jamestown, Randolph and Steamburg.
Food and other supplies can be found in the nearby communities of Falconer, Frewsburg, Jamestown and Randolph.
Dining opportunities can be found in the nearby communities of Falconer, Frewsburg, Jamestown, Randolph and Steamburg.
Lodging can be found in the nearby communities of Falconer, Jamestown and Randolph.
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.