CNY Hiking HOME PAGE Finger Lakes Trail FLT Eastern/Catskill Section Central Section of FLT
Finger Lakes Trail

Beales Pond &
Artic China State Forests


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The trail enters Masonville from NY 8 to the north and leaves along NY 206 to the west.  This 10.7 mile section of the Finger Lakes Trail begins as the trail leaves dirt Getter Hill Road and enters the 617 acre Beales Pond State Forest past an old gate along a woods road.  A new lean to was constructed in 2011 in this state forest along the FLT.

The trail climbs into the state forest along the old woods road, passing a trail register before turning right off the old road onto a narrow walking path.  Soon the trail will level and reach the short side trail that leads to the beautiful Getter Hill Lean To.  The new lean to, built in 2011, features a picnic table, firepit and open air privy.  The main FLT now crosses a stream on a nice bridge and passes the small but interesting Motor Engine Falls. 

The trail now climbs steadily as it reaches a high point (2000 feet) with a nice view off to the right (west) before descending and crossing seasonal dirt Beales Pond Road.  From here the trail ascends along a logging track before reaching the trails highest point in this state forest at 2051 feet.  Soon the trail leaves the state forest and enters private property for a short time.

The trail now enters the 2858 acre Artic China State Forest along an old DEC road.  The trail follows this old road all the way past a gate to seasonal dirt Shear Road.  The trail follows Shear Road west for 0.3 mile before turning left off the road and back into the forest.

Now the trail climbs to its highest point in Artic China State Forest at an elevation of 2080 feet and then reaches a junction of a blue blazed trail that leads 1.6 miles west to Oquaga Creek State Park.  The trail now descends into China Ravine and crosses a creek on a plank bridge.  The trail ascends out of the ravine and reaches the "summit" parking and camping area off Dunbar Road.  Please note that Dunbar Road does not go all the way to NY 8 as it is stated on the map below.

The trail has one more steep ascent up to a ridge before beginning a long, sometime steep descent toward East Branch Cold Spring Creek.  The trail makes a sharp left turn during the descent and soon reaches Cold Spring Lean To on the left.  The lean to was built in 1995.  There are some views through the trees.  This next part of the trail has numerous old walls and even a few old foundations from the folks who used to live here many years ago.  The trail continues its descent and finally reaching East Branch Cold Spring Creek, crossing it on a very nice but slippery footbridge.

The trail reaches NY 8 and the end of this section.  The trail continues across NY 8 into Steam Mill State Forest and then Barbour Brook State Forest.  There is a DEC Parking area off NY 8 where the trail crosses the road.  This eleven mile section of the Finger Lakes Trail is moderate to difficult hiking with an overall elevation gain of 2124 feet during this section of the trail. 

Directions:  This section of trail is almost two hours and 90 miles away from Syracuse, NY.  To reach this section take I 81 south to the Whitney Point exit.  Turn left on NY 79/US 11 and follow road into the village.  Look for the NY 206 signs and turn left on NY 26, then a quick right on NY 206.  It is 27 miles to Bainbridge on NY 206 and then another seven miles to Masonville.

Register and hiker on the FLT near Getter Hill Road

Bridge near Getter Hill Lean To & Motor Engine Falls

The interesting Motor Engine Falls along the FLT

View to the west along the FLT in Beales Pond State Forest

Cold Spring Lean To in Artic China State Forest

Old foundation along the FLT in Artic China State Forest

Bridge over Cold Spring Creek


Mile Elevation Trail Description (follow white blazes)
0.0 1512 feet

Turn right off Getter Hill Road, passes gate and climb. Soon reach trail register. Enter Beales Pond State Forest. There is some parking on the shoulder. GPS Coordinates N42 14.280 W75 23.263

0.25 1664 feet Turn right off old woods road.
0.9 1575 feet

Cross small stream.

1.5 1634 feet Reach side trail on right that leads a short distance to Getter Hill Lean To.
2.4 2015 feet Reach a high point along the trail.  The trail now descends.
2.6 2002 feet A nice view to the right (west) and a bench is just off the trail.
3.2 1862 feet

Cross seasonal dirt Beales Pond Road, pass two gates and climb on old logging track. Parking. GPS coordinates are N42 12.535 W75 23.214

4.0 2052 feet

Highest point along FLT in Beales Pond State Forest.

4.7 1949 feet

Trail turns left on old road.  Entering Artic China State Forest.

5.6 1771 feet

Pass gate and reach seasonal dirt Shear Road.  Turn right and follow dirt road.

5.9 1932 feet

Turn left off road into woods.  Parking. GPS coordinates N42 11.040 W75 23.363

6.3 2081 feet

Highest point along trail in Artic China State Forest.

6.5 2020 feet

Blue blazed trail on your right leads 1.6 miles to Oquaga Creek State Park.

6.8 1956 feet

Begin steep descent into China Ravine.

7.4 1596 feet

Cross creek on plank bridge, begin to ascend out of China Ravine.

8.4 2046 feet

Trail begins a short descent.

8.6 1959 feet

"Summit" parking and camping area on your right.  Dunbar Road (DEC Road) does not go all the way to NY 8 as some maps show. GPS coordinates N42 09.419 W75 22.711

9.2 2009 feet

Begin long sometimes steep descent toward the East Branch Cold Spring Creek and NY 8.

9.7 1672 feet

Trail makes a sharp left turn.

9.9 1579 feet

Cold Spring Lean To on your left uphill. Views.

10.4 1377 feet

Cross East Branch Cold Spring Creek on footbridge and soon pass trail register.

10.7 1420 feet

Reach NY 8 and the end of this section. DEC parking lot across road. GPS coordinates N42 10.055 W75 21.591

For a continuation see Barbour Brook State Forest.

View along the Finger Lakes Trail in Beales Pond State Forest

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