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Toothaker Creek State Forest

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Toothaker Creek State Forest locator map

Toothaker Creek State Forest covers 709 acres. The topography is very hilly with thin soils and rocky exposed ridge tops. Better quality upland sites support a mixture of northern hardwood, hemlock, and white pine forests. Lower quality upland sites are dominated by red oak, eastern hophornbeam, hickories, and other species adapted to droughty and nutrient poor soils. Pine and spruce plantations were established on what were formerly farm fields and pastures. Flatter ground supports open wetlands and shrub swamps, which gradually transition to swamp hardwoods in seasonal flooded areas.

Featured Activities



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

Hiking on all trails is allowed year-round on this forest.


Primitive Camping

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

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.

Hunting & Trapping


Wildlife Mangement Unit: 6C

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

Hunting and trapping are allowed in accordance with state laws and regulations. Follow hunting and trapping safety guidelines. Be prepared before going into the woods.



General information on fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules and regulations and lists DEC boat launches by region.



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

All trails are open for bikes on the forest. No trails are maintained specifically for bikes.

Cross-country Skiing & Snowshoeing

cross-country ski

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

All trails are open for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. No trails are specifically groomed for cross-country skiing.


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

The wildlife that may be present in the Toothaker Creek State Forest includes deer, turkey, ruffed grouse, mink, raccoon, black bear, fox, and migratory songbirds. Smooth green snake, eastern garter snake, wood turtle and painted turtle may also be present.


a while and red painted trillium on the forest floor
A Painted Trillium in Toothaker Creek

This forest can be accessed from the Fullerville and Garrison Roads, and the Garrison Access Trail in the town of Pitcairn.

  • North End Road: (44.112942°N, 75.303287°W) Google Maps (leaves the DEC website)
  • Garrison Access Trail: (44.200935°N, 75.312405°W) Google Maps (leaves the DEC website)
  • Fullerville Access Trail: (44.192796°N, 75.280883°W) Google Maps (leaves the DEC website)

All coordinates provided are in decimal degrees using NAD83/WGS84 datum.

Rules, Regulations & Outdoor Safety

Practice Leave No Trace Principles (leaves DEC website) 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 Toothaker Creek State Forest must follow all State Forest Use Regulations and should follow all Outdoor Safety Practices for the safety of the user and protection of the resource.

Don't Move Firewood: insects it carries could kill the forests you love.

Planning and Management

DEC developed the draft St. Lawrence Rock Ridge Unit Management Plan that describes proposed management activities for this and several other state forests in the area. DEC accepted public comments on the draft until April 30, 2022. Questions about this draft UMP may be sent to


Several state forests in southwestern St. Lawrence County were severely damaged by an intense windstorm that occurred on July 15, 1995. This storm came to be known locally as the 1995 Microburst. The storm affected a wide area stretching from Lake Ontario across northern New York State to the central portion of the Adirondack Park. Winds gusted as high as 100 miles per hour. Damage ranged from broken tree limbs and tops to areas of 10 or more acres that were entirely blown down. For more information, visit the National Oceanic and Atmoshperic Administration website (leaves DEC website).

Four state forests in the town of Pitcairn suffered heavy wind damage: California Road, Cold Spring Brook, Greenwood Creek, and Toothaker Creek State Forests. Over the next 3 years, a total of 1,100 acres of storm damaged timber were harvested, yielding 1.4 million board feet of sawlogs and more than $280,000 in revenue. Many of the harvested areas have become dense stands of hardwood seedlings and saplings. These areas now provide early successional habitat preferred by several species of birds such as ruffed grouse, woodcock, and warblers.

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information

State Lands and Facilites

Where to Find Nearby Amenities

  • Gas can be found in the nearby communities of Harrisville, Edwards, Philadelphia and Star Lake.
  • Food and other supplies can be found in the nearby communities of Harrisville, Gouverneur and Edwards.
  • Dining opportunities can be found in the nearby communities of Harrisville, Natural Bridge and Oswegatchie.
  • Lodging can be found in the nearby communities of Natural Bridge, Carthage and Gouverneur.

St. Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce (leaves DEC website) can provide information about other recreation, attractions and amenities in this area.

Numerous guidebooks 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.

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