DRYDEN RAIL TRAIL:
JIM SCHUG TRAIL:
DRYDEN-FREEVILLE, NEW YORK
-BIKE IT OR HIKE IT-
Last Updated: August 6, 2013
Length: Jim Schug Trail; 4.1 miles
Dryden Rail Trail; 3 miles?
Difficulty: Jim Schug Trail; Easy. Flat, hard packed cinder & grass rail trail.
Dryden Rail Trail; Easy. Flat, hard packed cinder & grass or stone-dust rail trail?
To Start from Dryden [Northern End]; From the junction of Route 13 & 38 in Dryden follow Route 38 south. Take your first right on George St and park in the municipal parking lot. To access the trail continue along George St to Mill St and turn right. Head left at Main St and you'll come to the start of the trail just before the Agway store. No parking available near trail head.
To Start from E Lake Rd/Willow Crossing parking lot [Southern End]; From the junction of Route 13 & 38 in Dryden follow Route 38 south for 3.6 miles. Turn left on Purvis Rd, then right on E Lake St/Willow Crossing. The parking lot and trailhead will be on your left.
The Dryden Rail Trail follows the former rail bed of the Lehigh Valley Railroad northwest through the town of Dryden to the village of Freeville. South of Dryden it's called the Jim Schug Trail. Future construction will extend the trail south east from Freeville through Etna, Varna to Ithaca, where it will connect to the East Ithaca Recreation Way . For more information visit; JIM SCHUG TRAIL , DRYDEN RAIL TRAIL & FRIENDS of DRYDEN RAIL TRAIL .
Starting from E Lake Rd/Willow Crossing parking lot in Dryden [Southern End]; Mile Markers every 0.5 miles along with a bench. The Jim Schug Trail consists of hard packed cinder & grass as it follows the old rail bed north. Travel through a marsh along a causeway crossing a bridge before coming to the Lake Road parking lot at 0.7 miles. Travel through another marsh along a causeway before passing by Dryden Lake. Lots of wildlife sightings including Blue Herons. Come to an intersection at 1.5 miles.
Note; The trail on your right will bring you to Dryden Lake Park where you'll find rest rooms, fishing and picnic shelters.
Continue straight leaving the lake behind. Cross W Lake Rd before coming to Chaffee Road parking lot at 1.8 miles. Another marsh with 3 bridge crossings along the Dryden Lake Outlet that parallels the trail north before crossing Keith Lane parking lot at 2.4 miles. The trail travels along a partially shaded corridor passing by a pond and crossing Weber St at 3.5 miles where you'll find a Map Board. Quickly cross South St (Route 38) and the trail passes by the Dept of Public works before crossing Mill St at 3.9 miles. Cross an old iron RR bridge over Virgil Creek where the grass trail brings you out to Main St in downtown Dryden at 4.1 miles. Map Board located here.
The trail has been extended north. I have not checked out this section and believe the mileage to be about 3 miles. Caution; Not sure if there is a crosswalk here. The Dryden Rail Trail continues north across Main St, I believe as a hard packed cinder & grass rail trail although it could be stone-dust? You quickly cross Elm St and leave the village behind following a wooded corridor. Cross Spring House Rd where the trail heads west crossing a bridge over Egypt Creek. Cross a causeway along Virgil Creek before coming to George Rd where the trail turns right to reach a crosswalk. The trail re-enters the woods back to the rail trail as it starts to turn north again. Come alongside Virgil Creek briefly. The trail next travels alongside DPW Dr coming out to Railroad St in Freeville. Places to get some refreshments here. I believe you head left on-road along Railroad St (wide shoulder) a short distance to Factory St and head left (south). Bear right on Union St and you'll pick up the Dryden Rail Trail on your left as it enters the woods. Soon the trail utilizes Freeville Depot Rd and crosses Johnson Rd. Another bridge crosses Virgil Creek continuing south through the woods. I believe the trail currently ends at or before Kirk Rd after about 7 miles?
Note; Plans are to continue the trail south east through Etna to Varna where it will connect to the East Ithaca Recreation Way in Ithaca. In Varna, funds were secured in 2019 to complete the trail from Pinckney Rd to Game Farm Rd and connect to the East Ithaca Recreation Way. Currently, plans are stalled in 2021 concerning building a bridge over Route 13 or detouring around it.
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CLICK HERE FOR DRYDEN RAIL TRAIL MAP
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