California Hill State Forest

Park Overview:

Bring your compass and/or GPS skills to this undeveloped land. At the end of Wawayanda Court, there is a launch for cartop boats onto shallow, marshy Wawayanda Lake.

Trail Uses:Hiking, Mountain biking, Bridle path, X-C skiing
Dogs:Dogs on leash
Trail Miles:
Park Acreage:948 acres
Buy Trail Map:East Hudson Trails Map
Buy Book:New York Walk Book

Park Description:

In 2004, New York State purchased a 617-acre parcel in Putnam County which contained most of the 90-acre Wawayanda Lake, and in 2007 it bought land that made the former Pudding Street, Gordon Road and California Hill Multiple Use Areas one contiguous open space. Today, these three areas have been combined to form the 950-acre California Hill State Forest, devoted to sustainable forest management, recreation, watershed protection and the enhancement and protection of natural resources.

Trails Overview:

There are no marked trails in this forest. Hunting is a major activity, so be aware of hunting seasons. A crude trail map of part of the park is available at this link. The park can be mapped also with the NY DEC interactive map tool. Forest roads give access from each parking area.


Take the Pudding Street exit off the Taconic State Parkway, heading east. Note: from the southbound Taconic Parkway, this is a left exit. There are 3 places to access the park:

  • Pudding Street parking: there is signed, roadside parking on the right side of Pudding Street, 1.4 miles from the Taconic Parkway. Note: Be sure to bear right 0.2 mile from the Taconic Parkway to stay on Pudding Street.
  • Wawayanda Lake parking: From the Taconic Parkway, proceed east on Pudding Street for 2 miles, turn right on Wawayanda Court, and follow it for about a mile to its end.
  • Gordon Road parking:
    From the Taconic Parkway, proceed east on Pudding Street for 2.9 miles; turn right on Gordon Road, and proceed for 0.6 mile to the signed entrance on the right.

From the east, the park can be accessed from NY 301 and County Route 21/Peekskill Hollow Rd in Kent.

  • Pudding Street and Wawayanda Court. parking: From NY 301, proceed south for 0.1 mile on Rt. 21/Peekskill Hollow Rd.; turn right on Richardsville Rd. Go .5 miles and turn left on Pudding Street. Wawayanda Court is a left turn 1.5 miles down Pudding Strreet. The signed roadside Pudding Street parking is on the left 2.2 miles down Pudding Street from Richardsville Road.
  • Gordon Road parking: From NY 301, go south 1.4 miles on Rt. 21/Peekskill Hollow Rd. and turn right on Gordon Road. The signed entrance to the park is 0.6 mile on the left.
Contact Information:DEC, Lower Hudson Valley -- Region 3
Region:Fahnestock State Park