OLD CHAMPLAIN CANAL TRAIL; FORT EDWARD-HUDSON FALLS
FORT EDWARD-HUDSON FALLS, NEW YORK
FEEDER CANAL TRAIL:
HUDSON FALLS-GLEN FALLS, NEW YORK
SOUTH GLENS FALLS BIKE TRAIL:
SOUTH GLENS FALLS, NEW YORK
-BIKE IT OR HIKE IT-
Planted: June 29, 2004
Length: Old Champlain Canal Trail; 2 ¾ miles total.
Feeder Canal Trail (including on-road detour); 7 ½ miles
South Glens Falls Bike Trail; 1 mile. On-road detour from the Feeder Canal Trail; 0.4 miles
Difficulty: Easy. Flat, stone dust trail. One on-road detour (sidewalks).
To start from Fort
Edward; Take a right on East St,
then a left up Wing St. Go around Mullen Park to McIntyre St and head left.
You'll come to 2 parking lots on either side of the park. The trail heads
northeast past a pond.
To start from the Feeder Dam in Glens Falls; Take exit 18 off of I-87 to Corinth Rd and head east. Turn right down Richardson St and take to its end at the Feeder Dam parking lot.
To start from Feeder Canal Park (Five Combines); Take Route 4 through Fort Edwards and into Hudson Falls. Take a right down John St, then a left onto Burgoyne Ave (Route 37). The park and parking lot will be on your right where the Feeder Canal crosses.
Construction of the Old Champlain Canal began in 1817 and open to boat traffic in 1822. It provided access from Lake Champlain in Whitehall to Fort Edward, on the Hudson River, completing an inland route from the Saint Lawrence River to New York City. The first Feeder Canal was dug in 1822 in Fort Edward to direct water from the Hudson River to the Champlain Canal. A flood destroyed part of the dam across the Hudson, so in 1824, a new dam was built in Glens Falls and a new Feeder Canal was begun. In 1832, the Feeder Canal was improved and 13 Locks were constructed. The present-day Champlain Barge Canal replaced the old canal in the early 1900's and runs for 60 miles between Waterford and Whitehall. For more information visit; FEEDER CANAL .
Four trails roughly intersect in this region, this page describes three. Starting from Fort Edwards you can follow the Old Champlain Canal Trail to the Feeder Canal Trail. From the Feeder Canal Trail you can access the Warren County Bikeway, as well as, the South Glens Falls Bike trail. The Warren County Bikeway travels north to Lake George. See; Warren County Bikeway . You can ride other sections of the Old Champlain Canal in the towns of Waterford, Halfmoon, Stillwater & Saratoga. See; Old Champlain Canal Trail; Waterford-Halfmoon , Old Champlain Canal Trail; Stillwater & Old Champlain Canal Trail; Saratoga .
Starting from Fort
Edward; The Old Champlain Canal Towpath
heads northeast past a stone monument for the park, following alongside
the old canal out to Towpath Lane.
Note; Heading southwest through the built up part of the park a paved path brings you out to Wing St. The canal is buried through the park, but supposedly continues right past an open field where they are supposed to be remnants of Old Champlain Canal Lock 15, which was built around 1862 as part of the Enlarged Champlain Canal. After the Canal was abandoned in 1918, this section was preserved some years to provide access to the Glens Falls feeder Canal nearby. Also on this site is a large dry-dock right next to the lock (once part of the original 1822 canal), and next to that is the mouth of the Old Fort Edward Feeder Canal. The site is heavily wooded and completely overgrown. I have not checked out this site.
Cross the road where the narrow trail travel between Towpath lane and the canal to your left. This part of the canal is very overgrown and the trail a bit rough. After ¾ miles a short on-road section along Towpath Lane takes you less then a ¼ mile to a nice wide, smooth, stone dust trail where you enter the woods.
You come to the start of the
Canal Trail after 1 ¾ miles.
The Old Champlain
continues north and is more distinct with the added water from the
Canal. You'll pass by an old stone bridge abutment just past 2 miles and encounter a
change in the trail surface to hard packed dirt close to 2 ½ miles. The trail
ends after 2 ¾ miles next to an old footbridge across the canal spillway. If
you take a short side trip down a path next to a field, it will bring you to an
active rail line. Here the tracks cross over the canal and if you look due east
you can see where the canal meets up with the new
Back at the start of the Feeder
Canal Trail, you travel northwest over the bridge to Lock
1. A picnic table is located
here. You then pass by the overgrown Locks 2 & 3. Between Lock
3 and the next Lock 4, at a ¼ mile, look to your right for a
long log next to the trail. In the middle of the log is a two-trunked tree. This
is 9 paces (2 steps = 1 pace) back from a wooden mile marker sign with a 7
on it. Go to the backside of the log, next to the tree and under some bark
(There was a rock on top at one point, if you find one please place it on top)
is the Feeder Canal Trail Letterbox. Continuing along the trail you pass by
4 and come to a reclaimed landfill on your right near the unseen Lock 5.
This begins the only hill climb on the trail. You pass by the descending Locks
that form the Five Combines, Locks 6-10. At the top you reach the Feeder
Canal Park in Hudson Falls and a parking lot at 0.6 miles. Historical signs here. Cross the
road to Lock 11 where the sluiceway begins. This brings extra water down
along the canal via its own channel. Pass by Lock 12, then
at 1.1 mile. Cross over Maple St
for a short paved section that doubles as a road for driveway access. The trail
returns to stone dust at 1 ½ miles. You then cross over Martindale Ave
where the trail continues on the opposite side of the canal next to a linear
park and parking lot. At 2 ¼ miles, the canals sides become concrete. You come
to a busy road crossing across Route 254 at 3 ¼ miles. No cross
light. You pass
under the first of 3 bridges at 3 ¾ miles. The second bridge is a railway
bridge and the third is a footpath over the canal. The Glens Falls Portland
Cement plant will be to your left. The trail ends at 4 ¼ miles in Glen
Falls. At one time
there were 83 lime kilns along the canal and if you look left you can see some
of the stone work ruins.
From here you can access the western end of the Feeder
via an on-road detour, as well the Warren
County Bikeway. Turn right and head up Shermantown Rd. Turn left on
Across the street after ¼ mile will be Platt St. That will take you to the Warren County Bikeway.
Continuing straight down Warren St
you pass an historic armory, now used by the National Guard. You'll come to Glen
(Route 9) after a mile, turn left here. You cross over the canal at 1 ¼ miles.
The Feeder Canal Trail picks up again across the street.
From here you can also get to the South Glens Falls Bike Trail less then
½ a mile away. To do this cross over the Glens Falls Bridge into South Glens Falls. Notice at the bottom of the falls in the
the rock formation known as Cooper's Cave, a site made famous in James
Cooper's novel "The Last of the Mohicans". Cross the road and look for a sign that
reads South Glens Falls Historical Park. Turn right down this road. This
brings you to the park and a gazebo. The South Glens Falls Bike Trail
starts at the top of the parking lot. The trail runs alongside the
and brings you to South Glens Falls Beach after a mile. Very
scenic and includes a viewing platform on the rivers bank.
Heading west along the remainder of the Feeder Canal Trail you start out next to the Hudson River and Glens Falls. You'll pass by an old stone bridge abutment at 0.9 miles and come to the Bush St Bridge just shy of 1 ½ miles. This road takes you to the Haviland's Cove Park, along the banks of the Hudson River. You come alongside the river again and the trail finally ends at the Feeder Dam and Lock 14 after 1.9 miles. Cross over the footbridge to the Feeder Canal Park parking lot.
CLICK HERE FOR MAP
CLICK HERE FOR OLD CHAMPLAIN CANAL MAP
CHAMPLAIN CANAL TRAIL ACTION PLAN
LETTERBOX LAST VERIFIED ON
OCTOBER 12, 2013
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BIKE IT OR HIKE IT