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Finger Lakes Trail
North Country Trail
Rock City State Forest
8/7/2010 NOTE: Tornado damage from Little Rock City to Old CCC Camp is 0.7 mile long and 0.2 wide. The trail has been closed by the DEC. A timber salvage operation and trail restoration may take up to 2 years, so in the meantime bypass by using Rock City Rd. and Hungry Hollow Rd. from Access 2 to 3.
This 4.5 mile section of the Finger Lakes Trail - North Country Trail travels through the unique 2905 acre Rock City State Forest. This state forest has a picnic area off Little Rock City Road (seasonal dirt road) and has the remains of the old Seneca CCC camp near Hungry Hollow Road.
Rock City State Forest received its name due to the massive boulders the size of houses which are naturally arranged so that they resemble a city with “streets” running between them.
Little Rock City in Rock City State Forest (picture by Kirk Doyle)
This unique “city” is formed by many factors including a massive resistant conglomerate bed, erosion of the weak shale base and soil creep. The conglomerate bed actually has its own geological designation known as Devonian Salamanca conglomerate. A conglomerate is a rock consisting of individual stones that have become cemented together.
With nothing to prevent this bed of rock from sliding down slope, the conglomerate has been carried slowly downhill by soil creep which has been going on for thousands of years. This downhill slide has caused the conglomerate bed to break into huge blocks to form the “buildings” and “roads” of the “city”. As these blocks lean against each other they form caves, tunnels and passageways.
Camping in Rock City State Forest (picture by Kirk Doyle)
This 4.5 mile section of the Finger Lakes Trail / North Country Trail begins on the corner of NY 353 and Stone Chimney Road. The Elkdale Country Club is a highly recommended restaurant. The FLT/NCT follows Stone Chimney Road and enters Rock City State Forest, where the drivable part of the road soon ends.
You'll soon follow the old Salamanca Road briefly until the trail veers off the road near a gate. There is a bivouac area nearby. The trail crosses Little Rock City Road. Turning right on the road will lead you 0.3 miles to "Little Rock City" and the picnic area (no water). This is an area worth exploring.
The FLT/NCT follows state forest nature trails over the next couple of miles. Be sure to watch for white blazes. This section ends at Hungry Hollow Road near the old CCC Camp Seneca with picnic pavilion plus bivouac area.
Look below for a map and trail description of this section of the trail. This section of the Finger Lakes Trail / North Country Trail is also part of the Conservation Trail. This stretch of the FLT/NCT is featured on map M3 from the FLTC.
This section begins at the corner of NY 353 and Stone Chimney Road. There is a golf course and restaurant here (Elkdale Country Club). Parking. Follow Stone Chimney Road.
Entering Rock City State Forest.
End of drivable section of road, continue to follow track and white blazes. Ascend.
Turn left on old Salamanca Road.
Trail turns right off road near gate.
Highest point of trail in Rock City State Forest.
Cross Little Rock City Road. Parking. Right on road leads to Little Rock City Picnic Area. The FLT/NCT now follows state forest nature trail for next two miles. Follow white blazes.
Trail turns left. Descend.
Trail turns right. Still descending.
Trail turns left. Trail levels.
Trail turns right toward dirt road. Spring.
The old CCC Camp Seneca with picnic pavilion and bivouac area. Reach Hungry Hollow Road and the end of this section. Parking. For a continuation see McCarty Hill State Forest.
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