Oak Ridge State Forest
- Open for recreation: Year-round
- Fee: Free
- Contact Information:
- DEC Region 7 Sherburne Office: (607)-674-4017 M-F 8 am- 4 pm, email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Emergency, Law Enforcement & Rangers: (518) 408-5850 or 911
- Location: Bainbridge, Chenango County
- Wildlife Management Unit: 7P
- Map: View Oak Ridge State Forest Map || View Same Map in PDF (244 KB) || Google Earth || State Lands Interactive Mapper
Oak Ridge State Forest is a 576 acre State Forest. Stumptown Road bisects and provides access to the area. There are no trails in the forest; recreation is limited to hunting, fishing, trapping, primitive camping and nature photography/observation
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.
General information on fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules & regulations.
Hunting & Trapping
General information on animals includes links to information about birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians and insects that inhabit or migrate through the state.
It is easy to find oaks and their associated species in the forest, as well as the wildlife that are sustained with the acorn food source: turkey, squirrels, deer, and small mammals.
Take State Highway 206 west from Bainbridge. While still within the village limits, take Mt. Pleasant Road south to Stumptown Road. Follow Stumptown Road to the forest. (42.2675393°N, 75.5202333°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.
How We Manage Oak Ridge State Forest
Oak Ridge State Forest is part of the Chenango Trail Unit Management Plan. A Unit Management Plan (UMP) guides 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. If you have questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us email@example.com.
Oak Ridge State Forest is located northeast of the village of Afton. It is a hilltop forest, except on the eastern side, where there is a 300± foot deep ravine that mother nature carved with a small stream flowing off the hilltop. The most common visitors to the forests are hunter and woodland hikers. Purchased with Hewitt Amendment funds in the 1930's, the State Forest is a blend of planted forests of red pine, larch and Norway spruce, and natural forest stands consisting mostly of red maple, red oak, chestnut oak, white oak, American beech, white ash, hickories, white pine and eastern hemlock. The plantations were mostly planted by Civil Conservation Corps in the 1930's.
This oak forest was well stocked with American Chestnut before the chestnut blight passed through the area in the early part of the 1900's. Sprouts from the root systems of those long gone chestnut trees are still common; however, few, if any, reach nut bearing stage before the blight again takes its toll.
Nearby Amenities and Attractions
Chenango County Tourism Webpage (leaves DEC website)
Gas, food, dining and lodging may be found in the nearby communities of Sidney.
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.