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Hiking in Chenango County
Finger Lakes Trail System
Pharsalia Woods State Forest
This is one of the official side trails of the Finger Lakes Trail System. This trail system has over 900 miles of hiking trails in New York. The Plymouth Loop Trail has blue blazes while the Finger Lakes Trail has white blazes. This 5.4 mile loop hike utilizes both trails. This loop hike is located in Pharsalia Woods State Forest. The area is located north of Bowman Lake State Park.
The highlight of this loop is the new Pharsalia Woods Lean To, constructed in 2013. The loop also features the Ed Sidote Memorial Bench. He is known as Mr. FLT. The loop also features many old stone walls as well as some old foundations. You will also see two old CCC water holes used to collect water. The trail used to visit the old Plymouth Lean-To. This lean to was rather old and we are unsure if it still stands. This loop is not as popular as other loops in the Finger Lakes Trail System, but don't let that deter you from hiking here.
This loop hike has an elevation change of about 325 feet and is a very easy hike.
DIRECTIONS: From Lafayette take US 20 EAST to NY 91 South. In Fabius turn left on NY 80 East. Just past entering Madison County turn right on East Lake Rd. Turn right on NY 13 South and in DeRuyter turn left at the stop sign onto Albany Street. This road now turns into Crumb Hill Rd. Turn right on Maripossa Rd, then in South Otselic, turn right onto NY 26 South.
After you pass the Otselic Fish Hatchery, turn left on County Route 42 (sign for Norwich & Bowman Lake State park). Now turn left on NY 23 North. In just about one mile turn (veer) right on North Rd. When the pavement ends, turn left on Center Rd. In another mile (after farm on right), turn right onto Fred Stewart Rd (seasonal dirt road). Shortly you will see a FLT sign and a small parking area to the right plus shoulder parking available. Park here. The GPS coordinates are N42 35.994 W75 42.500 for those who have a GPS devise.
Old stone wall next to Finger Lakes Trail
CCC Truck Road
Pharsalia Woods Lean To
Mile Elevation Trail Description (Plymouth Loop) 0.0 1816 feet
Trailhead parking area, Finger Lakes Trail turns right into forest. Entering Pharsalia Woods State Forest. Follow white blazes.
0.8 1781 feet
Reach dirt CCC Truck Road and turn left, following road.
1.1 1766 feet
Trail turns right into forest. There is an old CCC Water Hole to the left of the road.
1.8 1777 feet Ed Sidote Memorial Bench. Side trail on right travels to the Pharsalia Woods Lean To. 2.1 1778 feet
Cross season dirt Fred Stewart Road.
2.2 1753 feet
Reach dirt CCC Truck Road and turn right, following road. Pass old CCC water hole as you cross small stream in 0.1 mile.
2.4 1752 feet
Trail turns right into forest.
2.6 1780 feet
Junction of the blue blazed Plymouth Loop Trail. Turn left and follow blue blazes.
2.75 1854 feet
Reach dirt CCC Truck Road and turn right, following road.
3.1 1883 feet
Trail turns left off road near DEC State Forest sign.
3.3 1919 feet
Highest point on this loop hike.
3.9 1830 feet
Trail splits --> turn left (straight). To the right leads to the site of the former Plymouth Lean To
4.7 1828 feet
Reach seasonal dirt Fred Stewart Road and turn right following road.
5.4 1816 feet
Trailhead parking area and end of Plymouth Loop.
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