Lyon Brook 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: Oxford and Guilford, Chenango County
- Wildlife Management Unit: 7P
- Map: View Lyon Brook State Forest Map || View Same Map PDF (176 kb) || Google Earth || State Lands Interactive Mapper
The forest is named after the nearby Lyon Brook, which is a tributary of the Chenango River. Lyon Brook State Forest covers a total of 528 acres. The Public Forest Access Road which runs through the center of the forest serves as a multiple use trail for cross country skiing, hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking and snowmobiling.
At the intersection of Route 32 and Lyon Brook Road is an historic marker describing a railroad bridge that previously crossed over Lyon Brook. Some remnants of the bridge supports are still visible as you pass through the "notch" on Lyon Brook Road.
General information on hiking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.
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 biking includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.
General information on fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules & regulations.
General information on snowmobiling includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations.
Cross-country Skiing & Snowshoeing
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.
General information on horseback riding includes how-to and safety tips and links to rules & regulations. Proof of current negative Coggins certificate is required for all horses and out-of-state horse owners are required to produce a 30-day health certificate.
General information on animals includes links to information about birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians and insects that inhabit or migrate through the state.
The mammals that are common residents of the Lyon Brook State Forest include deer, raccoons, squirrels, porcupines, chipmunks, and opossum. Coyotes and foxes are also present, but less common. There is also a large variety of birds, including songbirds and hawks. Herons and other waterfowl are not usually present on the forest. One unique attribute of this forest seems to be its relatively large population of woodpeckers. It is quite common to walk along the Public Forest Access Road and hear numerous woodpeckers sounding on trees, especially during the springtime. The pileated woodpecker is often seen on this forest
Lyon Brook State Forest is bordered by privately owned forest lands and agricultural lands. To gain access to the Forest, take County Road 32 (Black River Road) South from Norwich or North from Oxford. Turn on Lyon Brook Road, and follow Lyon Brook Road East to the entrance of the Forest.
The public forest access road is a good quality, shaled-surface road, which may be traveled with any passenger car. The 1.1 mile road is gated and there is no outlet. The gate is kept open from spring until early winter (approximately April 15 to December 15), and as long as the weather is not too severe during the deer hunting season to allow access. This road is not plowed in the winter, and is often traveled by cross country skiers and Snowmobilers, so the gate is closed to prevent motor vehicle access. There are several areas where there is enough room to pull-off and park a car, and the end of the road has a turn-around area, with room to park several cars. One section of this road is relatively steep with some sharp turns, and drivers should be alert for deer, as they are commonly encountered along the road during the summer months
Eastern parking lot (42.45432°N, 75.518775°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
Rules, Regulations and Outdoor Safety
Practice Leave No Trace 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 Lyon Brook State Forest
Lyon Brook State Forest is part of the Between Rivers 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. If you have questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us email@example.com.
The highest elevation on the forest is approximately 1600 feet and is located in the far West section of the forest. The lowest elevation is about 1200 feet and is found in the Northeast corner of the forest, at the point where the tributary of Lyon brook flows past the North boundary of the forest. The forest has a mixture of well-drained and poorly-drained ground. If you are walking through this forest, you should be prepared to encounter areas of wet ground. One of the unique geological features of this forest is the outcropping of large rocks near the higher elevations along the Northern boundary.
The forest cover types on Lyon Brook State Forest include pure Northern hardwoods (beech, birch, maple, oak, cherry, ash, and basswood), and mixtures of Northern hardwoods with several species of conifers. The conifers include red pine, white pine, Norway spruce, hemlock, and Scotch pine. On this forest, all of the red pine, Scotch pine, and Norway spruce trees where planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC's) in the late 1930's. For example, the Norway spruce that is located in the Northeast section of the forest was planted by the CCC's in 1937. Approximately 50% of the acreage of this forest has a forest cover type of pure Northern hardwoods while the other 50% is a mixture of hardwoods and conifers.
Nearby Amenities and Attractions
Chenango County Tourism Webpage (Leaves DEC website)
Gas, food, dining and lodging may be found in the nearby communities of Oxford and Norwich.
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.