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Five Streams State Forest

hikingprimitive campingmountain bikingfishinghuntingtrappingsnowmobilingcross country skiingsnow shoeinghorseback ridingicon key

Five Streams State Forest locator map

Five Streams State Forest is comprised of 6,353 acres. The forest is named for the streams that drain the area. Hike, mountain bike, or horseback ride along the short multi-purpose trail off of North Pucker Street to a small pond on the property.

Featured Activities



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

Hiking is allowed on the multi-purpose trail and anywhere on the property unless posted otherwise.


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.


mountain biking

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

There are no trails maintained specifically for mountain biking but bikes are allowed anywhere on the property unless posted otherwise.

Lake at Five Streams State Forest



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

Fishing information for Central NY is available.

Hunting & Trapping


Wildlife Management Unit: 7M

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



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

A snowmobile trail that is part of the state-wide network crosses the forest between Pucker Street and Skillman-Hoffman Road in the southern section of the forest. There is also a snowmobile trail on the northern part of the forest that follows some of the unplowed town roads as part of its course.

Cross-country Skiing & Snowshoeing

cross country skiing
snow shoeing

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

Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are permitted on all hiking trails.

Horseback Riding

horseback riding

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

Proof of current negative Coggins certificate is required for all horses and out-of-state horse owners are required to produce a 30-day health certificate.


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


Travel west on County route 5 from the hamlet of McDonough. Access to Five Streams State Forest is primarily from seasonal town roads. Visitors should be aware that some of these seasonal roads, including portions of Shingle Street and Birdlebough Road, are in very rough condition. Four wheel drive is recommended, and cars having low ground clearance should not attempt to travel on these roads.

  • County Route 5 (42.4935658°N, 75.8181167°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 Five Streams 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.

Planning and Management

DEC manages these lands in accordance with the management activities described in the Five Streams Unit Management Plan (UMP) that covers Five Streams, Red Brook, and Balsam Swamp State Forests. 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.

DEC developed a draft update to the Five Streams UMP that describes in detail proposed management activities for public recreation on Five Streams State Forest. DEC accepted comments on the draft until July 31, 2021. Questions can be emailed with the subject line "Five Streams Unit" to

Timber Management

Five Streams State Forest is comprised of a mix of native hardwoods and softwoods as well as conifer plantations. Conifer plantations comprise about 40% of the area and about 70% of these were planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. The plantations consist primarily of red pine, Norway spruce and white spruce. The native forests are of the northern hardwood forest type. The most common tree species on the forests include: eastern hemlock, red maple, hard maple, black cherry, aspen (quaking and big-tooth), white ash, and American beech. Native species that are less common include: basswood, yellow birch, balsam fir, white pine, red oak, red spruce, white cedar, black spruce and tamarack.

The forest contains many large blocks of uninterrupted woodlands, making it an excellent place to explore. Like all State Forests, Five Streams is actively managed for timber production, so you may come upon logging operations. Forest management is generally aimed at maintaining the natural character of the native hardwood stands, retaining and regenerating some of the spruce plantations, and converting the pine plantations to hardwoods.

Nearby State Lands, Facilities, Amenities & Other Information

State Lands and Facilities

Where to Find Nearby Amenities

  • Gas, food, dining and lodging may be found in the nearby communities of Oxford and Greene.

Chenango County Tourism Webpage (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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  • NYSDEC Region 7
    Sherburne Sub-office
    2715 State Hwy 80
    Sherburne, NY 13460
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