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Basswood State Forest

hikingprimitive campingLean-to fishinghuntingtrappingsnowmobilingcross country skiingsnowshoeinghorseback ridingicon key

Basswood State Forest locator map

Basswood State Forest covers 938 acres. A multiple use trail runs between Quarry Road and Pickerville Road and allows for hiking, horseback riding, cross-country skiing, and snowmobiling. The most popular recreational activities on the forest are hunting and hiking. Winter activities include cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

The highest elevation on the forest is approximately 1,630 feet and is located near the eastern end of the Public Forest Access Road. The lowest elevation is about 1,200 feet and is found on the far western edge of the forest, along Shapley Brook.

Featured Activities



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

Lean-to, picnic table, fire ring

Several miles of the Finger Lakes Hiking Trail (leaves DEC website) are found on the forest. The trail can be accessed from the Public Forest Access Road.


primitive camping

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

There is a lean-to located along the Finger Lakes Trail, approximately 0.6 miles south of the Public Forest Access Road. The lean-to was fully funded, designed, and constructed by Finger Lakes Trail Conference volunteers. The site also features a picnic table, fire ring, and primitive outhouse.

Primitive camping is also 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.

Shapley Brook and Padget Brook are the two main streams on the forest. Both of these streams are tributaries to Bear Brook, which flows into the Chenango River. Neither of these streams is considered to be a significant trout stream, but surveys have found they both support brook trout.

Fishing information for Central NY is available.

Hunting & Trapping


Wildlife Management Unit: 7P

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.

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 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.

The mammals that are common residents of the Basswood State Forest include deer, raccoons, squirrels, porcupines, chipmunks, and opossum. Coyotes and foxes are also present, but less common. There is also a large variety of birds, including songbirds and hawks. Great blue herons are occasionally seen in the wetland adjacent to Basswood to Irelands Corner Road. Turkeys are also abundant on this forest, especially in areas where beech and oak trees are prevalent.


Access to the forest is primarily gained by traveling on County Routes 27 or 35. Brookbank Road crosses through the forest and connects to Route 27. Quarry Road also crosses through the forest, and it connects to Route 35. A Public Forest Access Road is located on the forest between Quarry Road and Dr. Crouch Road.

The town roads on the forest are all good quality and are gravel-surface roads which may be traveled with any passenger car. The Public Forest Access Road is also a well-maintained road. During the winter, the Public Forest Access Road is not plowed, but all town roads near the forest are plowed.

There are no true parking areas located on the forest, but there are many places to park vehicles along the sides of the town roads. One may also park on old log decks next to the roads.

  • Brooksbank Road west (42.39052°N, 75.566233°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
  • Puckerville Road (42.384286°N, 75.563841°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
  • Crouch Road and visitor kiosk (42.382974°N, 75.553048°W) Google Maps (leaves DEC website)
  • Lean-to, approximately (42.389380°N, 75.562863°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 Basswood 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 Between Rivers Unit Management Plan. 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


The forest name is attributed to the "Basswood Meeting House", a church built in the late 1800s in South Oxford. Much of the wood used inside of the church was basswood. Three of the roads which lead from South Oxford to the state forest incorporate the name of the historic building: Basswood Road, Basswood to Irelands Corner Road, and Basswood - Hoveys Road. The tree species, American basswood, is still prevalent in the area. All of the conifer plantations in the forest were planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in the late 1930s.

Timber Management

The forest cover on the Basswood State Forest is generally a mixture of native and cultivated conifers with northern hardwood species. The northern hardwoods include beech, birch, maple, oak, cherry, ash, and basswood. The cultivated conifers include red pine, scotch pine, white pine, Norway spruce, and white spruce. The native conifers include white pine and hemlock.

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 community of Norwich.

Chenango 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.

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    Sherburne, NY 13460
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