Turkey Point State Forest
Turkey Point is a 139+ acre State Forest in the Town of Saugerties in Ulster County, fronting on the Hudson River. Immediately to the South of Turkey Point is the County's Ulster Landing Park.
Turkey Point State Forest provides a wide variety of recreational opportunities on this relatively undeveloped property. Hiking is permitted anywhere on Turkey Point State Forest. An old woods road leads from the parking lot on Flatbush Camp road to the former U.S. Coast Guard dock and access to a small beach on the Hudson River.
Although there are two marked trails connecting to Sojouner Truth/Ulster Landing Park and the Hudson River to the south of the property, there are also a number of old farm roads and inactive logging trails which can be used for mountain biking, equestrian activities, snowshoeing and cross country skiing.
There are no formal camp sites on this property, however 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 at 845-240-6756.
Recreational access is best accommodated from the Ulster Landing Rd. parking lot, on county land. The Ulster Landing County Park borders the State Forest to the south. There is also a small parking lot on Flatbush Camp Rd. which is at the head of a gated 0.6 mile access road. This access road enables administrative access and is open to biking, equestrian use and cross country skiing in winter.
Hunting and Trapping
The Hudson River at Turkey Point
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. Target shooting is not permitted at Turkey Point State Forest.
Fishing access to the Hudson River is available both from the former Coast Guard dock for persons with disabilities (0.6 miles beyond the gate on Flatbush Camp Road, on a gravel-woods road) and via two small beaches - one near the dock and one to the south near Ulster Landing Park. Due to the deep water immediately adjacent to the former dock, opportunities are available to fish for striped bass and other sport fish that normally are not caught easily from shore.
Geo-caching is allowed although caches must be marked with the owner's contact information and may not be placed in dangerous or ecologically sensitive locations.
The gated road also provides for motorized access by people with disabilities who would otherwise have difficulty accessing the site. Individuals who have obtained the Department's Motorized Access Program for People with Disabilities (MAPPWD) Permit may call DEC's New Paltz office to open the gate by combination lock.
At the end of the road is a small parking lot with access paths leading to recreational features: a 200-foot wharf, formerly owned by the U.S. Coast Guard, that has been converted to an accessible fishing pier and an accessible hand launch on the Hudson River. The site is notable for its seclusion and shoreline access to the river's deep channel which is excellent for fishing many species, including Striped Bass (Morone Saxatilis).
Full Listing of DEC's Accessible Recreation Destinations
State Forest Regulations:
Anyone enjoying this state forest must observe these rules which protect both them and the forest environment. In addition, target shooting is prohibited on this property.
The Turkey Point area is fairly rich in history. There are references in several local history texts referring to an Indian trail leading to the river at Kalkoene Hoeck, or Turkey Point. A reference notes "its historical significance as an anchorage for Henry Hudson…" The earliest land deed to this area was apparently made on February 13, 1688 when Governor Dongan granted 200 acres reaching along the river bank south to Turkey Point to Claus and Abel Westphalen.
During the period when ice as harvested from the Hudson River (1900-1936) for refrigeration, the Knickerbocker Ice Company maintained an ice house at Turkey Point which included a boarding house for the men and boys who worked there, as well as a large horse stable. The remains of the ice house can be found along the river bank.
In 1938 the U.S Coast Guard built a large deep water concrete dock. In September 2003 the dock and 8.2 acres were transferred to the DEC from the National park Service through the Federal Lands to Parks Program. The property also contained remains of a summer camp for children from New York City in the 1940's and 50's, which were removed when the land was acquired in 1989 and 1990.
This area is part of the oak-northern hardwood natural vegetation zone. The characteristic topography of the property is a complex of hills and terraces underlain with sedimentary rock. A small forested swamp, an open swamp, a few brushy fields, and a small conifer plantation offer diversity to the property. The Fishing pier/small gravel beach is 0.6-miles on foot beyond the gate.
DEC appreciates public assistance. Volunteer projects will be considered if consistent with management policy and legal constraints. Volunteer projects are always subject to DEC supervision.
Follow State Route 32 to Ulster Landing Rd. (intersection is 4.5 miles south of the Esopus Creek in Saugerties and 2.8 miles north of the Kingston-Rhinecliff bridge). Follow Ulster Landing Rd. for a half mile. Turn left on Flatbush Camp Rd. and proceed half a mile to state land. A small parking lot is just before the gated woods road at the intersection of Flatbush Camp Road and Turkey Point Road.
Lands & Forests Office: (8:30 AM-4:45 PM M-F): 845-256-3076
Forest Ranger: 845-240-6756 or 845-256-3026
Emergencies: 518-408-5850, 877-457-5680 or 911