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Swancott Mill State Forest

Swancott State Forest locator map

hiking primitive campingfishinghunting trapping snowmobiling motorized access program for people with disabilities icon key

This 744-acre state forest is named for the nearby sawmill and small settlement that once existed along the East Branch of Fish Creek. 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 & regulations.

There are 2.63 miles of snowmobile trails, multi-use trails and unpaved roads that provide access to the forest and opportunities to explore the forest in an undeveloped setting.


primitive camping

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 fishing includes how-to and safety tips and links to seasons, rules & regulations.

The East Branch of Fish Creek, which runs down the eastern boundary of the property, provides excellent fishing for brown trout, rainbow trout, brook trout and Atlantic salmon. The East Branch of Fish Creek also flows into the Rome Reservoir. The Powlish Pond Creek, located in the northern portion of the property, has excellent fishing for brown trout, rainbow trout and brook trout. Access to the water bodies on the property may be difficult due to the lack of infrastructure; however, there are two DEC Public Fishing Stream parking areas located just off the property.

For Public Fishing Rights (PFR) on the Powlish Pond Creek and the East Branch of Fish Creek 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).

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 & Trapping


Wildlife Management Unit: 6K & 6N

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



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

There is .75 mile of snowmobile trails that traverse the property and connect with the NYS Snowmobiling Network of routes. These trails are maintained by the Southern Tug Hill Sno-Riders (leaves DEC website) through a volunteer stewardship agreement.


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

motorized access program for people with disabilities

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

There are 2 routes, the .4-mile Still Trail Road and the .66-mile Jug Point Road, in the western portion of the forest that allow motorized access for people with mobility impairments. A permit is required through the Motorized Access Program for People with Disabilities.


Map of Swancott Mill State Forest

From Boonville, take Route 294 west 6.6 miles to West Leyden. Turn left on State Route 26 then a quick right on Route 46. Go 8 miles to Swancott Mill Road. Turn left and proceed 0.6 mile.

  • Swancott Mill public forest access road intersection (43.454348°, 75.603936°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)

Nearby Public Fishing Stream parking areas:

  • Swancott Mill Rd., parking for Rome Reservoir (East Branch of Fish Creek) (43.443798°N, 75.598838°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
  • Osceola Rd. northern parking area for East Branch of Fish Creek (43.463853°N, 75.59423°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 Swancott Mill 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, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and horseback riding are all permitted on the property; however, there are no currently maintained trails for these activities.

Planning and Management

DEC developed the Tug Hill East Unit Management Plan (PDF), which describes the management activities for these lands. If you have questions and/or comments about this UMP, please email us at


When the state acquired the property in the 1930s, the mill and associated buildings were little more than memories of the pioneering generation, and were evidenced only by the stone foundations that had been left behind. Today this forest is a mixture of 70 year old pine plantations and nearly mature northern hardwoods that are periodically thinned by carefully controlled timber harvests under the direction of DEC's forestry staff.

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information

State Lands and Facilities

Where to Find Nearby Amenities

  • Gas, dining, lodging, food and other supplies can be found in the nearby communities of Boonville, Camden and Rome.

Adirondacks Tug Hill region website (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.