Registration is now open for Parks & Trails New York’s 19th annual Cycle the Erie Canal tour, an unforgettable opportunity to bike across New York State and take in the rich history of the legendary canal that transformed America. The eight-day, 400-mile recreational bicycle tour from Buffalo to Albany is scheduled for July 9-16, 2017. This year also marks the beginning of the bicentennial celebration for the Erie Canal.
Cycle the Erie Canal participants will experience one of the best trails in America as they pedal through historic canal villages and discover the small-town charm of Upstate New York. Along the way, canal historians and local experts will introduce riders to the people, places, and things that make the Erie Canal so important to the history of New York and the nation. With more than three-quarters of the route off-road on the mostly-flat and traffic-free Erie Canalway Trail, the tour offers unparalleled cycling for all ages and abilities.
Registration for Cycle the Erie Canal includes camping accommodations each evening with restrooms and showers; eight hearty breakfasts and six delicious dinners; two refreshment stops daily stocked with fruit, snacks and beverages; SAG support and baggage transport; daily cue sheets and marked routes; entertainment and historical presentations every evening; and guided tours of the Canal, historic sites, museums, and other attractions. Shuttles will be available at the beginning and the end of the ride to transport riders and their bicycles for an additional fee. Registration fee is $760 for adults and $415 for youths ages 6-17 and non-cycling participants.
Erie Canal Trailblazers, who commit to raise money to help Parks & Trails New York close the gaps in the Erie Canalway Trail, pay only $100 and receive special recognition on the tour.
For riders with less time, four-day options are available from Buffalo to Syracuse and from Syracuse to Albany. Two-day weekend options are also available from Buffalo to Fairport and from Canajoharie to Albany.
Parks & Trails New York is the leading statewide park and trail advocate working to create a network of parks, trails, and greenways so that New Yorkers can enjoy better connections to the outdoors. Cycle the Erie Canal supports Parks & Trails New York’s work on the Erie Canalway Trail and in communities across New York State.
Launch of the Cycle the Erie Canal registration comes a few weeks after Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced a historic commitment to complete and connect the Empire State Trail, a 750-mile trail that will connect Battery Park with the Canadian Border via the Hudson River Valley Greenway and Champlain Canalway Trail and Albany with Buffalo via the Erie Canalway Trail. This initiative will not only create the nation’s longest multi-use trail, but it will also bring substantial health, economic, and environmental benefits to the millions of New Yorkers who live along the new trail.
Event sponsors include the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor as the Heritage Sponsor, and CSEA, Hodgson Russ, and tourism agencies representing Orleans, Wayne, Cayuga, Madison, Oneida, Montgomery, Schenectady, and Albany Counties and Rochester and Syracuse.
High-resolution Cycle the Erie Canal photos available here.