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Illegal Tree Cutting in New York Has Officials Calling for Information

Catskill 3500 Club

An extensive tree cutting near an old bluestone quarry above Codfish Point has one DEC forest ranger looking for information.

The Catskill 3500 Club Facebook page has posted a request from DEC Forest Ranger Christine Nelson in regard to a clear cut along the Overlook Mountain Trail above Codfish Point in the state of New York.

Overlook Mountain Trail is rated as a ‘difficult’ trail. It is located near the town of Woodstock, New York (yes, that Woodstock) and is primarily used for hiking and snowshoeing. This trail is 4.6 miles out and back and features wildflowers as well as old growth forest.

Unfortunately someone has taken it upon themselves to cut down several full-sized trees and smaller saplings to create a clear cut on the herd path to an old bluestone quarry.

Ranger Nelson was quite specific about the location giving the altitude as 2,850 feet and near 18 0575746 E 46 62532 N (NAD 83). Here is a map of the general area:

Google Maps
Google Maps

The damage is obvious and took perhaps more than one person.


One picture shows the wood chips on the ground from an axe or hatchet.


Ranger Nelson is trying to create a timeline for when the damage took place. Signs that a hand saw was used are also apparent.


In other pictures, it can be easily seen that bluestones were also moved. It’s evident that the hand tools were used in an effort to mask the deed and to garner as little attention as possible.

Overlook Mountain is part of the DEC’s Wildlife Management Unit 3A (WMU) and is located in the Catskill Forest Preserve.

Ranger Nelson is adamant about protecting the forest preserve for everyone saying, “It isn’t okay to cut trees in the forest preserve. It’s unfortunate that some people think an artificially cut vista is grounds to break the law. There are plenty of naturally occurring views out there. The forest preserve is a big area and we are always appreciative for tips on illegal activities,” and as the 3500 Club added,  there is a hefty fine per tree for illegal cutting.

Anyone with information about this incident can contact Ranger Nelson by phone at 518-653-8203 or by e-mail at [email protected]

All photos via Catskill 3500 Club



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Illegal Tree Cutting in New York Has Officials Calling for Information