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Hiking in Tompkins County
The original 25 acres of the Stevenson Forest Preserve had been in the Stevenson family since the Revolutionary War. In 1995 this magnificent forest officially became the Stevenson Forest Preserve after the land was donated to the Finger Lakes Land Trust. Other donations in 1998-1999 allowed the preserve to grow to 83 acres.
A short section of the Finger Lakes Trail / North Country Trail travels through the preserve, with a small parking area on Trumbull Corners Road as the main trailhead for the preserve. A short 0.4 mile blue blazed Stevenson Trail leaves the main FLT/NCT to allow visitors to explore more of the forest.
This blue blazed trail is reached after hiking 0.3 miles on the main FLT/NCT from the parking area and takes hikers through old trees as well as a young forest, then finally to an open field with a wonderful view. There is no camping allowed in the forest preserve. There are some impressive large trees in the forest preserve.
We suggest trying the 1.4 mile out and back hike from the parking area along the white blazed FLT/NCT to the blue blazed Stevenson Trail to the view point at the end of the trail. After enjoying the view simply retrace your steps back to your vehicle or explore the forest a bit more via the Finger Lakes Trail / North Country Trail.
We have pictures, a video and a map from our 1.4 mile hike below. This easy hike has an overall elevation gain of 178 feet and can be enjoyed by all. Please support this wonderful hiking trail by purchasing official maps and guides from the Finger Lakes Trail Conference website. The Stevenson Forest Preserve is on the official FLTC Map M16.
Hiking in Stevenson Forest Preserve
From the parking area, follow the white blazes of the Finger Lakes Trail / North Country Trail into the forest and almost immediately reach a kiosk/trail register. At 0.3 miles reach the junction of the blue blazed Stevenson Trail on your left. You may notice a vernal pool on the left near the start of the Stevenson Trail. Vernal pools create excellent habitat for salamanders.
Enjoy your walk along the blue blazed trail as you pass a mixture of large trees and sections of young forest before reaching the end of the trail at 0.7 miles, which your rewarded with a beautiful view in a field. We had a wild turkey about 10 feet away from us before the turkey realized we were there and decided to scamper away.
Directions: From Ithaca take NY 327 past both entrances for Robert Treman State Park. Turn left on Trumbull Corners Road and follow road to small parking area on right side of road.
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