Pigeon Hill State Forest
Pigeon Hill State Forest, also known as Chenango Reforestation Area # 36, consists of 736 acres and is located in the northwest corner of the town of Plymouth in Chenango County. This forest consists of conifer plantations intermixed with native hardwoods and conifers spread across a hilltop on an area roughly 1.25 miles wide by 1.25 miles long. The plantation conifer species include red pine, Norway spruce and larch. Common native hardwoods or conifers found on the forest include: sugar and red maple, white ash, black cherry, beech and hemlock. This forest is managed for a diversity of forest conditions which provide habitat for a wide array of wildlife species. Some of the wildlife species that use the forest for habitat include: deer, turkey, grouse, red squirrels, coyotes, and a wide variety of forest song birds such as thrushes and warblers.
The East Branch of the Canasawacta Creek flows through the northeastern portion of the forest for nearly a mile in length. This portion of the creek is lined with alders that provide cover for native brook trout holding in the pools and riffles. Parking for access to the northeast portion of the forest is available along County route 16. An additional smaller, unnamed brook that also holds native brook trout flows for over a half mile though the southwest portion of the forest.
Pigeon Hill State Forest receives most of its recreational use from occasional hunters during the autumn deer season and in the spring and fall turkey seasons. In all seasons of the year, the forest provides a peaceful area for those seeking solitude and adventure in the discovery of the sights and sounds of nature.
Pigeon Hill State Forest is part of the Pharsalia Woods 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.
Anyone enjoying the use of this State Forest must observe the following rules which protect them and the forest environment:
- Do not litter. Carry out what you carry in. Burying of refuse is prohibited.
- If you build a fire, do so with care and use wood from dead and downed trees only. Never leave a fire unattended.
- All motorized vehicles are restricted to access roads posted as motor vehicle trails. Off road use of motorized vehicles, such as ATVs, trail bikes and four-wheel drives is not allowed, except where specifically permitted by signs, posted notice or by DEC permit.
- Camping for more than three nights or in a group of ten or more requires a permit from a Forest Ranger. Camping is prohibited within 150 feet of water, roads or trail.
- No permanent structures should be established, including tree stands or blinds.
Access to this area is off of Chenango County Route 16 which borders the northeast side of the forest. Cookhouse Road traverses through the middle of the forest and provides seasonal access only. Visitors should be aware that portions of Cookhouse Road are in very rough condition. Cars having low ground clearance are not recommended for travel on this road.
State Forest Office (M-F 8am-4pm): 607-674-4017
Forest Ranger (Evenings, Weekends and Holidays): 607-316-3291
DEC Forest Ranger Dispatch: 518-408-5850