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The Erie Canal Bike Trail of New York
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Share your comments, questions, opinions, and advice on the Erie Canal Bike Trail.
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Buffalo to Tonawanda section?
John from Cobleskill from Cobleskill on 09/14/2019 02:28 PM
I just met a couple that were doing the Buffalo to Albany trip and they said that the only thing they would change on the trip is that they would NOT start in Buffalo but rather at the start of the Erie Canal itself in Tonawanda. They didn't offer details but they were less than thrilled by this section.

Does anyone have insight to this section? Is it "bad"? I've thought about starting in Tonawanda but I'm not sure. Please advise.

Lock 15 State Campsite in Fort Plain
Tom Ritchey Breakaway traveling Utica to Albany 9/14/19 on 09/13/2019 06:27 AM
Expecting to camp at block 15. Can someone tell me if they think there will be room there for us me

John from Cobleskill from Cobleskill on 09/14/2019 02:23 PM
yes there's a lot of room at Lock 15

Watervliet to Canajoharie Two Day trip
PJT from Montreal Quebec on 09/09/2019 11:18 AM
looking to do a late fall, two day trip along the very eastern end of the Erie Canal trail. I'll plan the length of the days dependant upon the trail condition. Looking for some local knowledge on the section between Albany and Canajoharie. What percentage is paved? How passable will the unpaved sections be in early November? Thanks!

Joseph Pafundi from Saratoga Springs on 09/10/2019 06:56 AM
Bonjour et bienvenue aux Etats-Unis!

I very often cycle this segment and it's safe to say that 90% of your proposed travels will be on paved surfaces. If I am not mistaken, the largest un-paved section is from Fort Hunter to Fultonville.

Bon sejour!

P.S. Be careful of a section between Rotterdam Junction and Pattersonville. This is on road (1 mile and 1/2) and very busy with trucks whizzing by.

John from Cobleskill from Cobleskill on 09/12/2019 07:34 AM
I often ride this section often and as far as being paved, I think from Albany to St Johnsville is one of the nicest (easiest, smoothest) sections of the Erie Canal. There is a short section (4 miles) between Amsterdam and Fultonville that is stone dust but that's no big deal in November. That starts close to the Schoharie Crossing site (which is worth a stop).

Good luck

PJT from Montreal Quebec on 09/13/2019 01:04 PM
thank you Joseph and John....much appreciated

Lock 15 State Campsite in Fort Plain
Tom Ritchey Breakaway traveling Utuca to Albany 9/13/19 on 09/13/2019 06:23 AM
Does any have an opinion about my chances of being able to camp at Lock 15. Will it be full? Is it safe? Thank you.

biking the erie canal
homer from CANANDAIGUA on 09/12/2019 05:43 PM
I want to bike the erie canal from Buffalo to Albany. should i ride alone or try to find a companion?

October Buffalo to Albany
Adventurous cyclist from Glastonbury on 09/03/2019 09:25 PM
Would love to plan a ride this October and am looking for companions. Will use my road bike with wider tires(32's) and hope to do about 40-60 miles per day. Maybe camp, or hotel, whatever is closest to the trail. I'm open. Would like to stop and enjoy some of the history. I'm a 62 year old married triathlete in good shape but not particularly fast (c or c+ level). I can go slow or be encouraged to move along faster. Let me know if there is any interest.

david gorman from hollidaysburg, pa on 09/11/2019 11:19 AM
Yes I am interested and would love to do it as a group. I am a former triathlete (hip issues) who now does aquabikes so your "formula" sounds perfect. Let me know what and when you have this in mind. Perhaps a week, plus or minus.

John from Cobleskill from Cobleskill on 09/12/2019 07:43 AM
I'm maybe open to the idea. Please let me know what you are thinking because I'm a C rider and using a road bike too. 40-60 miles a day is right in the area what I'm looking to do.

Peace Bridge to Niagara Falls video
Ray S (webmaster) on 09/11/2019 09:23 AM
Not directly on the Erie Canal, but it's very accessible in Buffalo and very cool - a ride to Niagara Falls from the Peace Bridge.
Thanks to Pat StillRiding for sharing

Stillriding from Pittsburgh, PA. on 09/11/2019 11:41 AM
Thanks for sharing Ray. This ride was so fun.

Lockport to Palmyra on the EC Bike Trail
Chris from East Aurora, NY on 08/27/2019 03:18 PM
Our 2 day/1 night west to east ride the last weekend of June 2019 on the ECBT from Lockport to Palmyra, midway between Rochester and Syracuse was really fantastic and memorable. We left a car near the police station in Lockport and the same in Palmyra. We overnighted in Brockport at the Victorian B&B and did about 45 miles both days, which was perfect for recreational bikers. The trail mostly followed the canal closely and was like one long beautifully maintained park. The villages along the way were scenic and historic, and we found a great lunch spot in Albion at the Village Café, less than a mile off the trail. For the most part the trail surface was great for the crossover/hybrid type bikes/tires we rode. A few lengthy sections were recently "repaved" with a hard packed sand-pebble type material that should be great with a bit of time/use and seasoning. It was a bit tacky being recently put down, but not a big deal. The section thru Rochester was on paved trail through more suburban, urban and industrial areas (with quite a few tree root bumps), but all in all just fine. If you are looking for a great overnighter or a couple one day sections, I would highly recommend Lockport to Brockport or Spencerport, and on the other side of Rochester, Pittsford to Palmyra, Newark or Lyons. Really beautiful, peaceful, scenic and easy to ride!!

Corinne on 08/29/2019 07:07 AM
Is there transportation if I only have one car?

Road bikes
Eva on 08/06/2019 06:40 PM
Are the trails road bike friendly??

Nicole from Newark, NJ on 08/06/2019 07:14 PM
I'm really eager to hear the answer to this as well!

Bop from Rochester on 08/06/2019 08:17 PM
What do you consider road friendly? I'm riding a Trek Domane and have see many different road bikes along it all the time. It's a hard pack trail that I have traveled many times from Hulberton to Newark. If you're looking for a smooth piece of asphalt, ride where your at.

The paved section in my area has root bumps bulging up here and there from the trees. Spots that will require you to cross roads. People walking dogs, kids. It's a MUP path in the larger towns.

Here, watch this. See if it's your cup of tea.

Bop from Rochester on 08/07/2019 10:13 AM
Here's another good look.

Margaret from Amherst on 08/07/2019 10:58 AM
HI, We did a trip from Lockport to Syracuse on the Erie Canal in June and I had a road bike- I was fine- There was a sandy section on the first day and our group elected to ride on the backroads for that small section- But most of the trail was absolutely fine.


John from Cobleskill on 08/21/2019 10:10 AM
I am asking the same question myself since I love my road bike.

From Utica eastward is mostly paved thus a road bike is fine. The "stone dust" is okay with my hybrid but I'm going to take my road bike on stone dust soon (like in the next week or so).

But I'm wondering if all "stone dust" is created equal because there's a part of it, east of Little Falls, that listed as stone dust and is more like a 4 wheeler path through the forest than anything else.

In the end, I might upgrade my road bike tires to the biggest, fattest ones I can put on it and go for it!

John from Cobleskill on 08/24/2019 09:55 AM
Eva.... How far are you going on the Canal?

If you are doing a day trip, road bikes are fine.

But I am trying to do a Buffalo to Albany trip and I'm asking myself the same question and I've spent the greater part of this summer trying to get the right answer, trying different bikes (Mtn, road, Hybrid etc) and different tires. I've decided that doing end to end is possible with a road bike but I'm outfitting it with the best/widest/most rugged tires and tubes I can buy because parts of the canal trail is less than ideal for a road bike tire :) And I'm assuming a flat tire or two but that's the price I have to pay to use my beloved road bike.


Canajoharie how far west of Canajoharie to find a restroom?
Electric bike from Schoharie County on 08/23/2019 06:09 PM
How far west of Canajoharie do you need to bicycle before finding a public restroom (or restaurant with a restroom)?

John from Cobleskill on 08/24/2019 09:46 AM
West? There's a Save a Lot in Fort Plain that's right on the pathway.

Going east from Canajo there's a church in Sprakers (?) that is open and offers a bathroom and water to those using the path.

October Day Ride in/around Syracuse
Hokie from Southern Tier on 08/19/2019 09:06 PM
Hi everyone.
Anyone have a good recommendation for a 4-6 hour ride in/around Syracuse that would make for a scenic day trip in October? Something paved would be ideal, though we could bring our hybrids if there's some rough terrain that opens up a more beautiful part of the trail.

Buffalo-Syracuse or Syracuse - Albany
Bob Emmerich from Now Rocky Pt., NY and West Melbourne,FL-Grew up West Islip, NY-raised family-Patchogue Ny on 11/12/2018 11:27 AM
If you had to choose only half of the Canal to bike which end would you choose.

trek620 from san diego on 11/13/2018 05:56 PM
Just finished route from Albany to Buffalo (before it was snowing). Because of the headwinds, I would say Syracuse to Albany would be my choice. Plenty to see on each leg. Be sure to visit the Erie Canal Museum in Syracuse.

John W. from Pittsburgh, PA on 12/25/2018 04:57 PM
I rode the Cycle the Erie Canal event in 2017 and I would choose the western end, Buffalo to Syracuse. Just my personal opinion as it seems more of the canal is intact and on trails in this half. The first miles out of Buffalo to the Tonawandas are paved. I would do west to east as prevailing winds typically go that way and also at the locks you are going downhill as opposed to uphill but these are not very noticeable to be fair. Either way is fine though, it's great riding either end!

lindsey english from amesbury ma on 08/19/2019 08:43 AM
I'm considering doing a section of the canal trail going west to east at the end of this month. I've been checking out different websites to inform myself about the bike trail but thought I'd ask about some specifics.
I'd do a more eastern part since I'm driving from the Boston area. I'm thinking of a 3 day trip, staying in cities/towns along trail. Good places to eat. Then of course, transport back to my starting point.
I haven't done a whole lot of riding lately and I'm not exactly a spring chicken (I'm an active, healthy 71).
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you;
Lindsey English

Overnight Parking in Rochester
Dan from Manchester, Ct on 08/14/2019 08:04 PM
Where can I park overnight in Rochester? I'd like to bike over to Macedon, camp there and then return?

Bop from Rochester on 08/15/2019 07:47 PM

Can't vouch for any or know of any. From the list, Mapco Auto Parks is the nearest to a canal entrance. Less than a mile.

Canalway Parking lot at Amsterday
NewB from Schenectady NY on 08/06/2019 09:44 PM
Is it safe/legal to leave your car overnight at the canalway parking lot in Amsterdam NY.

Black Brook Park in Clyde
Brad on 08/05/2019 09:17 AM
I called to make a camping reservation and was told that camping is not allowed!

Ray S (webmaster) on 08/06/2019 09:21 PM
Thank you for this update - I have removed Camping from the amenities at Black Brook Park.

trail conditions
xfiveo from buffalo on 08/02/2019 11:11 PM
hello...we are planning on staying in pittsford and taking a couple of day rides...we want to head west for 10-15 miles and turn around and do the same heading east for 10-15 miles... concern is that I've heard that the trail is more of a "hard packed" surface and may be soft ot sandy if it should rain making it more challenging to ride with our road bikes with 28mm tires...

...does anyone know anything about this ??? ...thank you !!

Bop from Rochester on 08/03/2019 07:28 AM
The canal West of Pittsford is paved all the way to Long Pond Road, in Greece. Going east, it's the normal hard pack surface. A hard downpour could soften the path somewhat. On the lead page

There's a picture showing what the path looks like east of Pittsford for the most part.

Buffalo to Syracuse or Syracuse to Albany?
John Fry from Park City Utah on 07/25/2019 03:53 PM
Hi, first timer here. We're going to do a five day bike trip in late September early October. Do you think the Buffalo to Syracuse section, or the Syracuse to Albany section is nicer, in terms of riding quality, scenery, traffic noise, general ambiance? Thanks, John

BobTheBuilder from Cleveland, Ohio on 07/30/2019 04:30 PM
Buffalo to Syracuse more trail, less roads

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