I am ashamed to admit that I have neither. Haven't gotten around to much forest PvP and haven't yet encountered the hawk ring. I've been able to avoid those guys as well by giving them two quick slashes and then backing away quickly. I'm wearing the gold-hemmed set, which has good poison resist. Really it isn't impossibly difficult so much as it's a bit frustrating. I've been rolling through the last few zones, then I hit Painted World and started getting knocked around a bit. First trip in I got up to the undead dragon, but not without using most of my estus and working my way through a bunch of tense fights trying to avoid toxic and also avoid getting my head chewed off by harpies. And then the undead dragon one-hit me (I didn't realize he was going to come charging up the bridge). So it was a relatively long slog to get back to him, and then a long fight to take him down, and then by the time I got out into the courtyard area I was out of estus and confronted with a wall of spear-wielding weirdos. Happily, I found the door back to the bonfire at that point, but upon returning to that area I got invaded by Jeremiah and was not anticipating the giant lava field attack, which also one-hit me. Then I turned in for the evening because it was pretty late and I didn't want to clear out the spear assholes again. Rest assured, when I go back, fools will be cut.