Cycling Day Trips

Hit the Trail!

Try these recommended rides to explore the Erie Canal and communities along its path. These trips are on the Canalway Trail, so you'll be cycling off road most of the way. Some sections of the trail are stone dust, others are paved. Hybrid tires are ideal.

Rides are listed west to east. Mileage is round trip, so you can cut it in half and go one-way if you want a shorter trip.

Start: Stevens Street/State Street Parking Lot, Lockport
Turnaround: Uncle G's Ice Cream, Washington St, Lockport
Highlights: Ride west along newly paved trail with great views of the canal. You'll see lovely gardens planted with flowers and Bike Art and several canal artifacts displayed along the route. This section of trail is cared for by volunteers, so be sure to say hello and thank you if you see them in the gardens.
Treats: Uncle G's Ice Cream
Start: Erie Canal Discovery Center, Lockport
Turnaround: Village of Middleport
Highlights: Cycle east to Middleport and cross the lift bridge to the picturesque canalside park. Upon returning spend some time in Lockport at the Erie Canal Discovery Center and the historic Flight of Five locks. There are good dining options nearby, including an urban winery and Lake Effect Ice Cream.
Treats: Alternative Grounds Cafe, Middleport
Start: Canalfront Welcome Center, Brockport
Turnaround: Holley Canal Park, Holley
Highlights: Head west from Brockport to the Holley Canal Park and the Village of Holley. Cross the Holley lift bridge to reach the park on the south side. Be sure to ride on the park trail to reach waterfall within the park. Enjoy a picnic at the park or cycle into the village for a bite to eat before returning.
Treats: Java Junction, Brockport

Start: Spencerport Depot & Canal Museum
Turnaround: Village of Brockport
Highlights: Start at the Spencerport Depot and Canal Museum, a small museum and visitor center located in a restored 1908 Trolley Depot. Depart west and in about 4 miles, you'll pass the hamlet of Adam's Basin, marked by a lift bridge. This is about the halfway point. In just over 7 miles, you'll reach the Village of Brockport, also marked by a lift bridge. Cross the bridge to poke around main street.

Treats: Union Street Coffee House, Spencerport
Start: Schoen Place, Pittsford
Turnaround: Village of Fairport
Highlights: Enjoy flat cycling between two lovely canal towns with lots of choices for food, ice cream, coffee, and craft beer on both ends. Start and end at Schoen Place, which has parking, shops, restaurants, and a brewery along the canal. At the mid-point, you'll pass Bushnell's Basin on the south side of the canal. The trail leads right into the Village of Fairport, where it's worth a stop for ice cream or a brew. You could easily begin in Fairport and reverse this route.
Treats: Ice Cream Factory, Fairport
Start: Village of Fairport
Turnaround: Village of Palmyra
Highlights: A nice day trip with plenty to see. Cycle east and make a pit stop at Lock 30 Canal Park in Macedon and walk the Butterfly Nature Trail. From there, follow signs and take a brief 1-mile detour at O'Neil Road to see the remains of Enlarged Erie Canal Lock 60. The ride to Palmyra will take you past the historic Aldrich Change Bridge at the Pal-Mac Aqueduct Park. Stop at the Historic Palmyra Museum and poke in shops on Main Street before returning.
Treats: Muddy Waters Cafe, Palmyra

Start: Jordan Canal Park, Jordan
Turnaround: Camillus Erie Canal Park
Highlights: Both Jordan and Camillus grew up on the Erie Canal in the 1800s and you'll see several historic canal structures as you ride. Head east along the Old Erie Canal to the Camillus Erie Canal Park. Take time to view exhibits in Sims Store Museum and then cycle another mile to reach Nine Mile Creek Aqueduct. Constructed in 1841, the aqueduct was restored by volunteers in 2009 and is the only working aqueduct on the Old Erie Canal.
Treats: Towpath Pizza, Jordan
Start: Canalway Trailhead, DeWitt
Turnaround: Green Lakes State Park, Fayetteville
Highlights: Cycle east alongside the Old Erie Canal to Green Lakes State Park (watch for the sign and bridge over the canal to get to the park at about 5 miles). Lock your bike at the park and head to the aquamarine glacial lake waters for a swim, kayak, or a hike around the lake. The park has a swimming beach and 10 miles of trails. Out and back ride.
Treats: Picnic or purchase food at Green Lakes State Park
Start: Canalway Trailhead, DeWitt
Turnaround: Chittenango Landing Canal Boat Museum
Highlights: Cycle the route of 1800s Erie Canal though the Old Erie Canal State Historic Park to Chittenango. The park gives a firsthand sense of the scale and character of the ditch that opened a continent. At Chittenango, cross the canal on the pedestrian bridge to explore the Chittenango Landing Canal Boat Museum, a former canal dry dock where boats were built and repaired from 1856 to 1917. (Half mile to ice cream at The North Pole.)
Treats: The North Pole, Chittenango

Start: Canastota Canal Town Museum
Turnaround: Fort Stanwix National Monument, Rome
Highlights: This big day of cycling follows the Canalway Trail through the Old Erie Canal State Historic Park. At about 14 miles, you'll reach Lock E21; continue on to Rome and Fort Stanwix National Monument. This 1777 frontier fort tells stories of the nations that fought for control of the Oneida Carrying Place, Mohawk Valley, homelands of the Six Nations Confederacy, and the rich resources of North America. Leave a car at both ends to cut the mileage in half.
Treats: Copperccino's Coffee House, Rome; Zem's Ice Cream, Canastota
Start: Rotary Harbor Park, Little Falls
Turnaround: Herkimer Home State Historic Site, Little Falls
Highlights: Here's an easy ride with lots to do on both ends. Park at Rotary Park and head east. You'll need to cross Rte. 169 so be cautious. Cycle to the Herkimer Home State Historic Site. The 1764 Georgian-style mansion was the home of Revolutionary War hero General Nicholas Herkimer. On your return, stop at Lock 17, the largest lift lock on the Erie Canal. Cross the lock bridge to reach trails at Moss Island National Natural Landmark (north side).
Treats: Cafe at the Stone Mill, Little Falls
Start: Lock 16, Mindenville
Turnaround: Canal Place, Little Falls
Highlights: This trip is within easy reach for Capital Region and Mohawk Valley residents and makes a nice day. Cycle west on the Canalway Trail, stopping to visit the Herkimer Home State Historic Site, home of Revolutionary War hero Gen. Nicholas Herkimer. Cycle a few more miles to reach Lock 17; just beyond the lock, you'll cross the bridge over the Mohawk River/Erie Canal and visit Canal Place. Poke around the shops and Arts Center, enjoy ice cream or lunch before cycling back.
Treats: Cafe at the Stone Mill, Little Falls

Start: Mohawk Valley Gateway Pedestrian Bridge (south side), Amsterdam
Turnaround: Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site, Fort Hunter
Highlights: Take in expansive views of the Mohawk River/Erie Canal and then cycle west to Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site. Stop at the 3-mile point to see the Putman Lock Stand at Yankee Hill, a former canal store and 1800s lock. Two miles further down the trail takes you to the park visitor center with views of the Schoharie Aqueduct.
Treats: Karen's Produce & Ice Cream, Fort Hunter
Start: Lyons Park, Niskayuna
Turnaround: Cohoes Falls, Cohoes
Highlights: Cycle east along the Mohawk River. The trail is shady and paved and makes for nice cycling. When you reach Cohoes, turn left on Manor Avenue. You will be leaving the trail and riding on streets for the last 1/4 mile. Turn right on Mohawk Street to reach Cohoes Falls. Visit Falls View Park to see the spectacular 75-foot waterfall.
Treats: LePage's Market, Cohoes
Start: Corning Preserve, Albany
Turnaround: Watervliet or Troy
Highlights: Known locally as the Mohawk-Hudson Bike Path, this stretch of paved trail along the Hudson River makes for a shady and pleasant ride. Cycle north to the Watervliet trailhead parking area and return or extend your ride another few miles to downtown Troy. You'll find shops and restaurants and a great Farmer's Market on Saturdays from 9am-2pm. The final ride to Troy is on road, so be cautious.
Treats: Troy Waterfront Farmers Market