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Hartwick State Forest

Hartwick State Forest locator map

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The 1,242-acre Hartwick State Forest is conveniently located just 10 miles from Cooperstown and about 40 miles from Utica. It is one of five state forests in the Leatherstocking Management Unit, named for James Fenimore Cooper's "Leatherstocking Tales". Hartwick State Forest is a popular destination for snowmobilers, hunters, and other recreation users.

Featured Activities


primitive camping

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

There are no designated campsites; however, 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 and regulations.

Public fishing access can be found on the nearby Otego Creek and its tributary, Clark Brook. For Public Fishing Rights (PFR) on these creeks, visit DECinfo Locator- Interactive Trout Stream Fishing Map (DECinfo Locator is best viewed on a desktop computer. Users are encouraged to visit the Trout Stream Fishing Map User Guide first for "how to" instructions on using the fishing map).

East-Central NY Fishing provides information on fishing in the area and links to top fishing waters, stocking lists, public fishing access and waters open to ice fishing listed by county.

Hunting & Trapping


Wildlife Management Unit: 4F

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

Hunting and trapping are allowed during appropriate seasons. The main game species and furbearers found on the property include deer, turkey, ruffed grouse, rabbits, squirrels and coyotes.



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

Hartwick State Forest features one snowmobile trail which runs across the northern portion of the property from Zachow Road on the west side to Dana Clark Road on the east side, crossing Clark Brook.


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

Otsego County lies on the eastern end of the Central Appalachian ecozone which hosts a plethora of wildlife. In addition to the notable game species and furbearers, a variety of songbirds as well as birds of prey can be found within the property.


NY-205 runs through Hartwick State Forest and has access to parking sites. To get to NY-205:

From the North: NY-28 S, right onto NY-80 W (1.9 mi), turn left onto NY-205.
Form the South: I-88 E. Take exit 13 to NY-205.
From the East: US-20 W then left on NY-28 S, right onto NY-80 W, and left onto NY-205.
From the West: US-20 E, right onto NY-51 S (14 mi), make a left turn onto NY-80 E (5.8 mi), turn right NY-205.

  • Zachow Road (42.712375°N, 75.084397°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)

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

Rules, Regulations and 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 Hartwick 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 resource.

Specific Rules

Hiking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, mountain biking and horseback riding are allowed within the property but there are no designated trails or maintained areas for these activities.

Planning and Management

DEC manages these lands in accordance with the management activities described in the Leatherstocking Unit Management Plan (PDF). In addition to management objectives, the UMP contains detailed information on natural features, recreational infrastructure, geology, natural and human history, habitats, wildlife, fisheries and much more

If you have questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us at

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information

State Lands and Facilities

Where to Find Nearby Amenities

  • Lodging and dining opportunities as well as gas, food and other supplies may be found in the nearby community of Cooperstown.

Cooperstown and Otsego County Tourism (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.