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Jackson Hill State Forest

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Jackson Hill State Forest locator map

The majority of the 1,409-acre Jackson Hill State Forest was purchased by New York State during the 1940s. More recent acquisitions were made in the 1960s and the early 2000s. Clark Brook runs along the western edge of the property and provides absolutely stunning views from the top of the gorge cut by the river. The state forest was created for the purpose of reforestation, wildlife management, timber production, recreation and watershed protection.

Featured Activities



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

The northwest portion of this state forest trail has trails that are part of the Black River Environmental Improvement Association (BREIA) (leaves DEC website) trail system. There are 1.83 miles of trails and unpaved forest roads that may be used to access the property.


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 leas 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.

Clark Brook runs along the western edge of Jackson Hill State Forest. This stream is a protected trout stream capable of supporting trout populations. Access from the property can be difficult because of the extremely steep terrain.

North 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 and Trapping


Wildlife Management Unit: 6K

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

Cross-country Skiing and Snowshoeing

cross country skiing

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

The northwest portion of this state forest has trails that are a part of the Black River Environmental Improvement Association (BREIA) (leaves DEC website) trail system. About 1.15 miles of this trail system is on the property. During the winter visitors enjoy snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Trail maintenance is taken care of by the BREIA organization and the trails are often (though not always) groomed for cross-country skiing during the winter.


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

Accessible Features


General information on accessible recreation includes links to other locations with accessible recreation opportunities and information on permits for motorized access.

The 0.27-mile BREIA West Ski Trail is located in the northwestern corner of the forest. It allows motorized access for people with mobility impairments. A permit is required through the Motorized Access Program for People with Disabilities.


From Boonville on Main Street turn southwest onto Academy Street. Continue on Academy Street until State Route 46 and take a left. Take the next right on Jackson Hill Road and proceed 2.8 miles to the state forest. The public forest access road is an additional 0.5 mile down the road.

  • Fire Lake forest access road pull-off area (43.429178°N, 75.357328°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 one state land to enjoy the outdoors responsibly, minimize impact on the natural resources and avoid conflicts with other users.

All users of Jackson Hill 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

Mountain biking and horseback riding are all permitted on the property; however, there are no currently maintained trails for these activities.

Planning and Management

DEC manages these lands in accordance with the management activities described in the Oneida Hills Unit Management Plan (UMP). 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 any questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us

Jackson Hill State Forest is comprised of northern hardwoods, northern hardwood-hemlock, plantations and brushy fields. The dominant tree species are sugar maple, black cherry, red maple, white ash, beech and hemlock. The plantations were generally established in the 1940s. The plantings consisted of white pine, red pine, white spruce, Norway spruce and larch.

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities and Other Information

State Lands and Facilities

Where to Find Nearby Amenities

  • Gas, dining opportunities, lodging, food and other supplies may be found in the nearby communities of Alder Creek, Barneveld, and Boonville.

Oneida 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.