BLACK BRIDGE TRAIL:
PEEBLES ISLAND STATE PARK TRAILS:
COHOES-WATERFORD, NEW YORK
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Last Updated: September 23, 2017
Length: Black Bridge Trail; 2.6 miles
Peebles Island SP Loop Trail; 2.2 miles
Difficulty: Black Bridge Trail; Easy. Flat paved trail.
Peebles Island SP Loop Trail; Moderate. Hilly, stone-dust & hard packed dirt trails. Some tree roots.
To start from the Waterford Harbor Visitor Center; Take I-787 north to Route 787 north to Route 32 (Saratoga Ave) across the Mohawk River into downtown Waterford. Turn right down 2nd St which will bring you to the parking lot on your right just before the bridge.
The Black Bridge Trail, also known as the Delaware Ave Trail begins in Waterford at the Waterford Harbor Visitor Center. It crosses the Mohawk River to Peebles Island State Park, then crosses the Mohawk River again to Van Schaick Island in Cohoes. It then follows Delaware Ave to the Black Bridge, a former Delaware & Hudson Railroad Bridge, built in the 1890s, that again spans the Mohawk River over to Green Island. I'm not sure if the other two bridges were also old RR bridges and just how much of the trail follows the old Delaware & Hudson rail bed. At Peebles Island State Park you can access a Loop Trail around the island. From the Waterford Harbor Visitor Center you can access the Old Champlain Canal Trail or connect to the Uncle Sam Bikeway via a short on-road detour. For more information visit; PEEBLES ISLAND STATE PARK .
Starting from the Waterford Harbor Visitor Center; A small museum is located in the upper section of the Visitor Center (accessed from the parking lot). A narrow path leads from the parking lot down to the lower section of the Visitor Center along the Mohawk River and Canal Walkway. Here you'll find a map board, restrooms and info center.
Note; Heading right (west) along the Canal Walkway brings you to the Champlain Canalway Trail and Lock 2 of the Erie Canal. You can also access the Uncle Sam Bikeway from here.
Head left (east) along the Canal Walkway and you'll travel underneath the old RR Bridge. A paved path will be on your left.
Note; Before taking this path you may continue straight along the Canal Walkway to where the Mohawk River enter the Hudson River. Map board and boat launch located here.
Follow the paved path up to old RR Bridge. This 1913 railroad bridge now has one lane for cars and one pedestrian lane. Cross over to Peebles Island State Park.
Note; To your left across the road you'll spot a sign board and a stone-dust trail. See; Peebles Island State Park Loop Trail below.
Continue straight along the paved trail across Peebles Island.
Note; A side trail on your left leads to a picnic pavilion and a promenade overlooking the Hudson River.
Come to an old green RR Bridge after 0.7 miles. Again, the old RR bridge now contains one lane for cars and one for pedestrians.
You'll cross over another portion of the Mohawk River to Van Schaick Island. Here the paved Delaware Ave Trail travels alongside Delaware Ave. The Mohawk River follows along your right. The trail cross the road and passes by a map board at 1.1 miles. The trail now travels along a residential corridor before crossing Ontario St at 1.6 miles. Just past some ball fields look right to spot the old Van Schaick Family Cemetery. Come to Van Schaick Ave at 2 miles.
Note; Van Schaick Park is located just up this road.
The trail then leaves Delaware Ave behind and takes you to the Black Bridge at 2.4 miles. This 1890 RR bridge was part of the Delaware & Hudson RR Line. You cross over the Mohawk River one last time to Green Island. Here the paved trail takes you out to Cannon St at 2.6 miles. This last section is new and will include a new parking lot, overlooks and kiosk, but I haven't checked it out yet. A sidewalk continues alongside Cannon St.
Peebles Island State Park Loop Trail:
Starting from the sign board next to the old RR Bridge entrance; Follow the stone-dust trail around the side of the brick building to the back of the complex where the trail becomes hard packed dirt and gravel with the occasional tree root. Continue straight at the intersection into the woods. The trail winds through the woods with some hills and many side trails. Just keep left at every intersection and you'll eventually come out above the Mohawk River at 0.6 miles. Follow the trail south along the east side of the Island and alongside the river. A nice promenade overlooks the southern end of the Island. Caution; Very steep drop offs. Trail now travels north along the west side of the Island. Travel along some sheer cliffs at 1.2 miles. Pass by a bench pavilion on your right with informational signs at 1.6 miles. Come to the northern tip of the Island where you can spot the Waterford Harbor Visitor Center across the river. The trail then turns inland. Turn left at your next intersection and this will return you to the back of the complex. Then head left to complete your loop of 2.2 miles.
CLICK HERE FOR REGIONAL TRAIL MAP
CLICK HERE FOR PEEBLES ISLAND SP MAP
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