The 2.6-mile Silviculture Trail takes visitors through several natural Adirondack habitats, including marsh, hardwood forest, and mixed conifer-hardwood forest, as well a forest plantation which was developed on the site of the St. Regis Golf Club -- a golf course which was built in the late 19th century for guests of the nearby Paul Smith's Hotel. The golf course was closed in 1949. The name of the trail -- silviculture (a branch of forestry dealing with the development and care of forests ) -- comes from the fact that it leads through an area once used by silviculture classes at Paul Smith's College to practice forest management techniques.
The trail begins near the deck of the Paul Smiths VIC Building. Take the left-hand fork at Trail Marker 1. This part of the trail passes through a forest of red and white pines and leads you down to a 300-foot pontoon bridge across open water on Heron Marsh at Trail Marker 2. The trail then leads to a loop of mixed woods and plantation pines. which was developed by Paul Smith's College. Parts of this area were planted in 1957. Another portion of the trail winds through a plantation of red and white pines, which were planted in 1973 on the abandoned golf course fairway. The trail also leads through a stand of balsam fir and red spruce trees which seeded naturally on one of the greens of the abandoned golf course. The walking is easy with a few small hills.