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Stoney Pond State Forest

paddlingprimitive campingcross country skiingsnowshoeingfishinghorse back ridinghuntingtrappingsnowmobilingicon key

Stoney Pond State Forest consists of 1,469 acres and offers visitors an opportunity to view a range of different flora and fauna. The 44-acre Stoney Pond was constructed in the late 1950's to provide wildlife habitat.

Featured Activities



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

A parking area and hand launch site is located on the pond. No gas powered motors are permitted. A day use area is located adjacent to the ramp.


primitive camping

General information on primitive camping includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.

Camping is allowed at 17 designated campsites and requires a camping permit between May 1 and September 30. Call 607-674-4017 to reserve a camping site. These sites generally fill up at least two weeks in advance, so plan accordingly. The camping sites are varied. Two sites are accessible only by foot and are for tent camping. Most of the sites are nestled among a white pine plantation at the south end of Stoney Pond. Each site contains a fire ring. A latrine services the camping area. There is no water well.

At-large primitive 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.

Cross-Country Skiing & Snowshoeing

cross county skiing
snow shoeing

General information on cross-county skiing and snowshoeing includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.

The 13-mile Stoney Pond Nordic Ski Trail is an important part of multiple use management of the forest. The trails wind through both natural forests and plantations and around Stoney Pond. Most trails are designed for skiers with a beginner or intermediate skill level. Caution must be used for safe, enjoyable skiing. Snow covered trails may contain hidden obstacles or hazards. Skiers are responsible to ski safely and under control at all times.

Skiing Etiquette and Safety

Ski touring, like any other sport, is much more enjoyable for everyone if all participants follow certain rules of etiquette.

  • Stay on the trails. Trails are laid out for skier's safety and convenience. Leaving the trail may cause skiers to encounter unknown terrain hazards and become lost.
  • Passing on the flat. Pass slower skiers on flat terrain. A faster skier should indicate his desire to pass by calling "track." The slower skier should yield by stepping out of the track to the right where possible.
  • Passing on a hill. Try not to pass on a downhill. Save it for the flat where the slower skier can maneuver easily.
  • Meeting on a hill. The skier going downhill has the right of way, since he is moving faster and may have less control. Do not descend a hill until the trail is clear.
  • Move off the trail as quickly as possible after a fall. This will prevent possible collisions and allow other skiers to pass. Fill sit marks before proceeding.
  • For safe, enjoyable skiing, please be mindful of the following recommendations:
  • Beware of hypothermia which occurs when your body loses heat faster than it is produced. In a few hours, death can result even in temperatures up to 50 degrees F. It is critical to quickly get a hypothermic person warm and dry.
  • Do not ski alone. Long tours should be made with others for safety.
  • Be prepared for the unexpected emergency. Carry warm clothing, water, quick energy food and matches.
  • Be sure someone knows your itinerary and expected length of stay. Please sign in/out on trail registers for your own safety.



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

Stoney Pond is populated largemouth bass and panfish.

Horseback Riding

horseback riding

General information on horseback riding includes hot-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.

Equestrians can use the cross-country ski trail for trail riding from May 1 to October 31.

Hunting & Trapping


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

Stoney Pond State Forest is open to hunting and trapping during appropriate seasons.



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

A secondary snowmobile corridor trail passes through the forest along Green Road and trail number 15. Snowmobiles are not permitted on any of the other ski trails.



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

Canada geese, mallard ducks and other waterfowl and blue herons are commonly seen around Stoney Pond.


From State Route 20 in the hamlet of Nelson, head south on the Eireville Road for approximately 2 miles. Turn left onto Old State Road, heading east. In approximately 2.5 miles, head south on Jones Road to the State Forest. Stoney Pond State Forest features 2 parking areas on Jones Road and 1 on Stony Pond Road.

Jones Road North Parking Area is located on Jones Road on the northern boundary of the state forest. (42.892099°N, 75.723981°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)

Jones Road South Parking Area is located on Jones Road just north of its intersection with Stony Pond Road. (42.882972°N, 75.723371°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)

Stony Pond Road Parking Area provides access to the Stoney Pond Camping Area. (42.88044°N, 75.71594°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 Stoney Pond 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 resourced.

Site-Specific Rules

In addition, this site has additional special regulations. Please familiarize yourself with the following rules which will be enforced to protect both the natural environment and the public recreationist. Enjoy your visit.

  • From May 1st through September 30th, camping is allowed at 17 designated sites by permit only. Free permits must be obtained from the DEC Lands & Forests Office in Sherburne, in person or by calling 607-674-4017 between the hours of 8 am and 4 pm Monday through Friday.
  • General state land camping regulations apply from October 1st through April 30th, and camping permits are issued directly from the State Forest Ranger during that time period.
  • Two camp sites are tent sites only and can be reached by hiking via trail #2. Two chemical latrines are available in the camping area from May 1st through September 30th.
  • Three campsites are handicapped accessible. Accessible campsites will be held open for people with disabilities until Wednesday noon each week.
  • No person under 18 years of age shall apply for, or be issued, a camping permit.
  • The maximum length of stay on any one site or combination of sites is 14 nights. No more than 8 people are allowed per campsite. A new permit will not be issued for the same address until an issued permit expires. No more than 2 vehicles per campsite.
  • Arrival time on a campsite is after 1 pm the first camping date of the permit. Departure time from the campsite is before 11 am on the last camping date of the permit.
  • Day users must leave by 10 pm. Quiet hours are 10 pm to 7 am.
  • Fires are allowed only in fire pits provided by DEC. Only dead and downed wood may be used for campfires. No burning of scrap wood from construction or demolition is allowed. No fires are allowed on the boat launch site.
  • Cutting, defacing or injuring in any manner any live trees, shrubs or plants is prohibited.
  • Littering is prohibited. Carry out all rubbish. Throwing glass, cans, aluminum foil, food wastes and other unburnable rubbish into the fire pit is prohibited.
  • Dogs and other pets must be safely restrained.
  • Swimming and/or bathing in the pond is prohibited. The overnight mooring or beaching of boats and the use of motors (either inboard or outboard,) are prohibited.
  • ATVs are prohibited. Off-road operation of any vehicle is prohibited.
  • Horses are not permitted in the camping area.
  • Violation of any provision of this notice shall be grounds to revoke the permit and remove the violator from the camping area.
  • Children are not to be left unattended.
  • Use and/or possession of alcohol by persons under the age of 21 on DEC state lands is illegal and is a routinely enforced statewide arrestable offense.

How We Manage Stoney Pond State Forest

Stoney Pond State Forest is part of the Tioughnioga 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.

Purchased with Hewitt Amendment funds in the 1930's, the State Forest is a blend of red pine, white pine, scotch pine and Norway spruce plantations with natural hardwoods consisting of red oak, American beech, sugar maple, red maple, black cherry, white ash and eastern hemlock. Various forest products, such as spruce pulpwood and hardwood sawtimber have been removed over the years.

If you have questions and/or comments about the UMP, please e-mail us at info.r7@dec.ny.gov

Nearby Amenities and Attractions

DEC Lands and Facilities

Gas, food and dining can be found in the nearby communities of Morrisville and Cazenovia.

Madison County Tourism Office (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 are little experience or woodland skills. See the NYS Outdoor Guides Association (leaves DEC website) for information on outdoor guides.