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West Mountain State Forest

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West Mountain State Forest locator map

West Mountain State Forest consists of 830 acres. There are no marked trails found on the property. However, there is a network of unmarked trails that provide for a variety of non-motorized recreation all year. Target shooting is prohibited at West Mountain State Forest pursuant to 6NYCRR Part 190.8 (ab) (leaves DEC website).

Featured Activities



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

West Mountain State Forest features roughly 4 miles of multi-use trails that traverse the property.


Primitive Camping

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

At large backcountry 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


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

Hunting and trapping are allowed during appropriate seasons. Various game species and furbearers found on the unit include white tail deer, pheasant, turkey, waterfowl, rabbit and squirrel.

Cross-country Skiing & Snowshoeing

cross-country skiing

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

West Mountain State forest is open to cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter. There are no groomed or maintained trails, however there are 4 miles of multi-use trails utilized by cross-country skiers and snowshoers in 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.

Some of the wildlife that can be seen includes white tail deer, turkey, waterfowl, rabbit and squirrel.


  • Parking area is located on the end of Gardner Hollow Rd. (41.612092°N, 73.627556°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 West Mountain 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 is allowed on the property; however, there are no trails currently maintained for this activity.
Target shooting is prohibited at West Mountain State Forest pursuant to 6NYCRR Part 190.8 (ab) (leaves DEC website).

How We Manage West Mountain State Forest

DEC is developing a management plan which will describe the management activities for these lands. In addition to management objectives, the UMP will contain detailed information on natural features, recreational infrastructure, geology, natural & human history, habitats, wildlife, fisheries and much more.

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

Nearby Amenities and Attractions

Gas, food and other supplies, dining opportunities and lodging may be found in the nearby communities of Pawling, Hopewell Junction, Wingdale and Poughquag.

Dutchess County Tourism (leaves DEC website) can provide information about other recreation, attractions and amenities in this area.

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.