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Whitacker Swamp State Forest

hikingprimitive campingmountain bikingfishinghuntingtrappingsnowshoeingcross country skiinghorse back ridingmotorized access for people with dissabilitiesicon key

Whittaker Swamp State Forest locator map

Whitacker Swamp State Forest covers 812 acres. A 2.2-mile multiple use trail runs through the forest and connects the two main access points; there is a place to pull off the road at both ends of the trail. The multiple use trail is open for hiking, skiing, snowmobiling, horseback riding and mountain biking.

Featured Activities

Hiking

hiking

General information on hiking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.

A 2.2-mile multiple use trail runs through the forest and connects the two main access points; there is a place to pull off the road at both ends of the trail.

Camping

primitive camping

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.

Rhodedendrum in Whittacker Swamp State Forest

Biking

mountain biking

General information on biking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations

A 2.2-mile multiple use trail runs through the forest and connects the two main access points; there is a place to pull off the road at both ends of the trail.

Fishing

fishing

General information on fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules & regulations

Fishing access information for the area is available. Fishing Easement information for the area is available.

Hunting & Trapping

hunting
trapping

General Information on hunting and general information on trapping includes how-to and safety tips with links to seasons, rules & regulations

Hunting and trapping are allowed during appropriate seasons.

Cross-country Skiing & Snowshoeing

snowshoeing
cross country skiing

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.

Horseback Riding

horseback riding

General information on horseback riding includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations

A 2.2-mile multiple use trail runs through the forest and connects the two main access points; there is a place to pull off the road at both ends of the trail.

Wildlife

wildlife

General information on animals includes links to information about birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians and insects that inhabit or migrate through the state.

The multiple use trail passes by Whitacker Swamp and two smaller ponds. These water bodies are good places to see beaver, geese, ducks, herons and other wetland wildlife species

Accessible Features

General information on accessible recreation includes links to other locations with accessible recreation opportunities and information on permits for motorized access.

The 2.2-mile multiple use trail is also designated for ATV use by people with mobility impairment disabilities, by permit only, under the Motorized Access Program for People with Disabilities.

Directions

Access to the forest is gained by traveling south from the village of Deposit on Oquaga Lake Road. The Public Forest Access Road entrance begins on the left side of the road about a half mile from Deposit. A second access point is off of the next left turn, Gillette Road. Both entrances to the forest have parking areas.


Oquaga Lake Road access (42.044463°N, 75.441962°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)

Gillette Road (42.022888°N, 75.434933°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.

All users of Whitacker 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 Whitacker State Forest

Whitacker Swamp State Forest is part of the Broome State Forests 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. The plan schedules forest product sales for some stands, while protecting other areas which have special scenic, riparian or wildlife values.

Whitacker Swamp was acquired in two separate sections from two different owners in 1964 and 1979.. The forest is named after the 14-acre wetland located in the southwestern corner of the forest. The forest contains a wide array of different cover types. The types include Northern Hardwood, Northern Hardwood-Hemlock, Northern Hardwood-White Pine, oak, Red pine, Norway spruce and Japanese larch. The elevation of the forest ranges from 1350 to 1750 feet above sea level . A large, 154-acre stand of red oak dominates the upland, north of the swamp. This stand was the site of prescribed fire experiments in the early 1980's to learn more about fire's effect on oak regeneration.

If you have questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us info.r7@dec.ny.gov

Nearby Amenities and Attractions

Cat Hollow State Forest

Broome County Tourism Webpage (Leaves DEC website)

Gas, food, dining and lodging may be found in the nearby community of Deposit.

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.