Monday, August 31, 2015

Day 8 - Syracuse

About two miles past Sim's Store in Camillus, the Erie Canal Trail abruptly ends at Warners Road. From there it is roughly 13 miles through the City of Syracuse to Dewitt to pick up the Erie Canal Trail once again. The canal once continued into the City of Syracuse but somewhere along the way it got filled in and paved over and is now known as Erie Boulevard, a very busy thoroughfare. (Hey, we don't make this stuff up.) :-)  On a weekday the trek across the city is incredibly dangerous due to heavy traffic. So we decided to do it on a Sunday afternoon to minimize both traffic and risk. As always, we got lost in the city as we most always do, :-) but made it across to Dewitt in a couple of hours, stopping by the Erie Canal Museum, in downtown Syracuse, ON ERIE BOULEVARD! The museum  was once a "weighlock" stop where canal boats were weighed and taxed. Well worth the stop - On a Sunday!!!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Day 7 - Weedsport to Camillus 20ish miles

This segment was mostly on stone dust trails. A great short ride. Historically it was all about "aqueducts" which took the Erie Canal OVER streams and rivers. In Jordan, NY we found a great artists mural on a wall in the town of the Jordan Aqueduct. Then it was on to Camillus, the half-way point of the original Erie Canal. A short stop at Sim's Store and then on to the fully restored 9 Mile Creek Aqueduct. On certain days, in season, you can actually take a boat ride that will take you over the 9 Mile Creek on this restored aqueduct. It is part of the Camillus Erie Canal Park at the end of your day's ride. Explore the aqueduct and then go back and spend some time at the restored Sim's Store.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Day 6 - Newark to Weedsport 35 miles

It was an on and off roads and trails early in the day. But upon getting to the Village of Clyde, about 1/2 way on the day's journey we stopped for lunch at The Little Barrel restaurant and broke out the maps. The dilemma was to take Bike Route 5 along busy Route 31, or take the recommended route along Tyre and Armitage roads through the countryside. We chose the country roads. But the map didn't show that the roads were up and down formidable hills. And, this being our 6th straight day of riding, we had to tough out those hills and then back to Bike Route 5 and into Montezuma. We toughed it out and got into Weedsport early evening ... very tired and very happy to see our hotel!!!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Day 5 - Rochester to Newark - 39 miles

We normally dread going through urban environments, but the City of Rochester made it easy. We glided through the city with help from the signs shown here. Then it was just corn fields and country on both paved and stone dust trails, all the way to Newark.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Day 4 - Albion to Rochester West - 29 miles

As we passed eastward through Brockport and on to Spencerport, it was lunchtime. And there just happened to be a little Irish pub, just off the trail. Expecting rain, we asked the insurance company next door for permission to park our bikes under their overhang. Turns out the owner of  McColley's Pub was right there at the time. All went well. We dodged the storm, had a great sandwich and Irish brew. Then we headed onto western Rochester for the night.
Our bikes at the pub:

Friday, August 14, 2015

Day 3 - Lockport to Albion - 30 miles

On this day we traveled along the stone dust towpath trails along the old Erie Canal. We passed through the quaint little canal towns of Gasport, Middleport and Medina. Just east of Medina is the only road that actually passes UNDER the Erie Canal. (Photo below) It's old; and it leaks. :-) But fascinating. Then on to Knowlesville (Barrel-making town) and through Eagle Harbor and a night in Albion. Dinner with an Englishman we met on the trail who was on a 60 day bike tour across the United States and headed for Boston. It's all fun!!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Day 2 - Lockport

After the Tonawandas we "hit the Roadways" for a few miles into Lockport. Lockport is a destination unto itself. There are the original, restored, "Flight of Five" locks that raised canal boats up to the level of the Niagara River. There is also the Erie Canal Discovery Center at 24 Church Street, an underground boat ride and this is a photo of a tour boat, "locking through" the modern day locks which raise boats about 50 feet between the two locks. It is well worth spending a day here before moving east on your next trek. At this point you have covered about 30 miles by bike.


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Day 1.5 - The Tonawandas

On your way from Buffalo to Lockport you will pass through the Tonawandas Gateway. You will have passed scenic river views and well-maintained parks along the way.

Enjoy the views of the canal!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Day 1 - Buffalo

We started the day with a tour of Buffalo by water, just as they did in 1825. We boarded the Miss Buffalo II down at the harbor. In addition to a GREAT day with GREAT weather we toured the Buffalo harbor area with extensive history on how the Erie Canal turned Buffalo, NY from a sleepy little town into one of the biggest ports in the world, and opened up the Western part of the United States to immigration, settlement and the natural resources to be shared around the world. At 3 pm we mounted our bikes and headed for Tonawanda and Lockport - about a 30 mile bike ride.

Thanks for joining us on this 400 mile adventure.