About the Erie Canalway
What’s the Erie Canalway?
The Erie Canalway is a 360-mile trail following the route of the historic the Erie Canal from Buffalo to Albany, New York. The trail is primarily flat and on crushed gravel or asphalt bike path, with a few sections of road-riding. A mix of urban centers and small towns are located with relative frequency along the route.
The Erie Canalway Trail is part of the Empire State Trail system and also part of a larger Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor. The trips detailed in this blueprint will focus on the trail between Buffalo and Albany, primarily following the Empire State Trail routing. We also offer a blueprint of the entire Empire State Trail system.
Riding the Erie Canal
The Erie Canalway route travels paved bike paths from the Buffalo Canalside waterfront paralleling the Niagara River to Tonawanda. The route then follows a mix of paved and crushed gravel rail trail from Lockport to Newark, N.Y.
East of Newark the Erie Canalway trail follows a mix of secondary roads and short bike paths, with fewer services but plenty of scenery, until arriving in the city of Syracuse.
From Syracuse to Albany the route mostly follows a series of bike trails including the Old Erie Canal Historic State Park and the Mohawk Hudson Bike-Hike Trail, which provides gorgeous views of the Mohawk River Valley and offers an easy path into Albany.
The Erie Canalway is a scenic trail appropriate for bike tourists of all abilities. Historic canal and lock features remain throughout the route, as well as a series of modern, active canal locks which offer a contrast to the older remains.
State and national sites and parks accessible from the trail include Niagara Falls, Women’s Rights Historical Park (Seneca Falls), Fort Stanwix and Oriskany Battlefield State Historic Site (Rome), Herkimer Home, Schoharie Crossing, and the Historic Stockade District (Schenectady).
A Comfortable Pace
Our blueprints itineraries are designed to give you the tools to create an itinerary that matches your goals and abilities. The Erie Canalway offers bike tourists a multitude of itinerary options to enjoy the ride and experience the region’s natural beauty.
Looking for Something Different?
We are proud to offer a wide variety of curated tour itineraries on many of the nation’s best trails.