Graphite Range Community Forest


COMING SOON: Saratoga County’s first community forest!

Driving along busy Route 9 in Wilton, New York, within one of the fastest growing counties in the state, it is hard to imagine that nestled between the restaurants and shopping plaza, lies a gateway to a exciting new recreational and conservation resource for the community.

Graphite Range Community Forest is a multi-use, community-managed forest which will be owned by Saratoga County. Stretching across 200+ acres, this new community forest will be a recreational hub for the surrounding communities and a space for environmental education and economic opportunity – all while helping to permanently protect the ecological value and resilience of the southern foothills of the Adirondacks, an area vital for regional natural resource connectivity.

A community forest – created for & by the community

With generous support from local families and businesses, the Graphite Range Community Forest features over 5 miles of trails for hiking and mountain biking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. The professionally designed trails guide visitors through the preserve showcasing historic foundations and hidden caves. Boardwalks, bridges and trails will enable recreational use while protecting sensitive habitat and headwater streams.   

Saratoga PLAN is working closely with project partners and hopes to open the trails later this year. Alongside a dedicated crew of volunteers and community groups, PLAN will lead the ongoing stewardship of the trails.   

A dynamic community hub

The trails throughout Graphite Range Community Forest are envisioned to be a central hub of a larger 50-mile trail network known as the Sarah B. Foulke Friendship Trails system, which will hopefully one day extend from Saratoga Springs to Moreau Lake State Park.  

People of all ages and abilities will be invited to enjoy a true nature experience just a few miles from downtown Saratoga Springs. 

A critical-to-conserve area

Permanent protection of this 200+ acre property as a community forest has prevented future development which would impair or destroy its delicate natural resources – a likely alternative outcome in a rapidly growing region with significant development pressure.  Instead, a rocky ridgeline, tumbling creeks, a diversity of northern hardwood forests, and an old graphite mine are among the wonders awaiting exploration and interpretation.

A worthwhile investment

The recreational opportunities provided by this property will attract both community and regional visitors (visitation at the two state parks in the Palmertown area alone tops 3.5 million people annually), benefitting local tourism and recreation-related businesses such as outdoor stores, restaurants, and lodging. Additionally, thoughtful forest management practices and selective timber harvests on the property will support local jobs in the forest products industry, as well as provide a potential source of revenue to support long-term property maintenance and trail stewardship.

To make a non-cash donation, such as gifts of appreciated stock, click here.


Your support is needed now to get Graphite Range Community Forest to the finish line so you, and your family and friends can enjoy this recreational hub! 

Project Partners

Saratoga PLAN
Saratoga County
Wilton Partners LLC

FEderal Grant Recipient

This project has been awarded $391,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Community Forest Program, a highly competitive federal grant! Now, we need to raise private funds to secure this important community resource. Can you help?


The community forest is a piece of a larger conservation and recreation project: the Palmertown Range.

Watch the entire Palmertown Range
series here.

This community forest project is being made possible thanks to the vision and generosity of a local family that acquired the land with a commitment to conserving it with and for the benefit of the local community.