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Summer of Adventures Cycling the Erie Canalway Trail

With thousands of miles of trails, and the longest multi-use trail in the nation, New York State is fast becoming a premiere, world-class cycling destination.  Suitable for riders of all abilities, the Erie Canal Bike Trail offers endless adventures exploring charming towns, living history, scenic beauty and cultural attractions of New York State.

About the Trail

The 360-mile Erie Canalway Trail route runs east and west across Upstate New York, between the cities of Buffalo and Albany.  As of 2020, the Erie Canalway Trail forms the east-west leg of the Empire State Trail, which connects north to the Canadian border and south to New York City (a 750-mile route).  The trail has on-road and off-road portions.  About half of the off-road sections are paved with asphalt, and the other half consist of stone dust (dry and compacted limestone material).  The trail is mostly level with an average grade of 1% since it primarily follows canal and rail corridors.  For cyclists and walkers, May through September offers the best weather to experience the trail and surrounding natural beauty.

Renting or Transporting a Bike

Grand Colonial Bed and Breakfast’s bicycle rental program offers rental bicycles at a reasonable price – just $10 per bicycle for a half day (up to 4 hours) or $20 for a full day (8 hours) including lock and helmet.  Bicycles can be reserved in advance of your stay using our booking engine or once you arrive (subject to availability).  Our hybrid bicycles offer comfort and versatility for the multi-riding surfaces on the trail.

If you have your own bicycle and are traveling by automobile, Grand Colonial Bed and Breakfast offers free parking for our guests.  Starting and ending your journey with us makes transporting your bicycle extremely easy.  If you plan to cycle a long distance (one way) and have the option of using two vehicles, a simple option is to drop one vehicle at your planned destination (or the next day’s end point).  Then, you can drive with your bicycles and luggage in the other car to your starting point.  Grand Colonial Bed and Breakfast provides guests with complimentary secured storage for their bicycles.

Preparing for your Ride

The most important aspect of preparing for your ride is making sure your bicycle is in top mechanical condition.  As a Bike Friendly New York-Certified Business, Grand Colonial Bed and Breakfast has accessible tools for tune ups, adjustments, and repairs.  We also have go-to items like tire patches and levers available for purchase.

Whether enjoying a leisurely ride from one village to another or spending a week completing the entire 360 miles (between Buffalo and Albany), we recommend mapping out your itinerary using the interactive Erie Canalway Trail Map.  You’ll find places to discover along the entire length of the trail.  The Trail Map is responsive so you can use it on your phone or tablet while you’re on the trail.

Getting to the Trail

The New York State Thruway roughly parallels the canal and is the primary artery for automobile transportation.  There are multiple trailheads with accessible parking spaces, including the access point at the Fort Herkimer Church.  Many of the locks operated by the New York State Canal Corporation also have designated parking areas.  Grand Colonial Bed and Breakfast is located at 112 W German Street in Herkimer, New York, about two miles from the nearest trail access point at the MOVAC building (15 NY-5S, Mohawk, NY 13407), and New York State Thruway Exit 31.  The trail access point is an easy bike ride or a very short drive away.

Things to See and Do in the Mohawk Valley

Grand Colonial Bed and Breakfast is located within Section 3 of the Erie Canalway Trail, between Syracuse and Little Falls.  The nearest communities in Herkimer County are Frankfort, Ilion, Mohawk, Herkimer, and Little Falls.  You can get more information on the area by visiting the Herkimer County Chamber of Commerce.

We recommend visiting these spots:

  • Gems Along the Mohawk and Erie Canal Cruises – 800 Mohawk Street, Herkimer, NY
  • Herkimer Diamond Mines – 4601 State Route 28, Herkimer, NY
  • Herkimer County Historical Society – 406 N Main Street, Herkimer, NY
  • Old Fort Herkimer Church – 575 State Route 5S, Mohawk, NY
  • Glacial Potholes of Moss Island, a National Natural Landmark – Little Falls, NY
  • General Herkimer Home State Historic Site – 200 NY-169, Little Falls, NY

Overnight Accommodations

Enhance your cycling experience when you spend the night with us at Grand Colonial Bed and Breakfast.  We’re located at 112 W German Street in Herkimer, NY, just 2-miles away from the Erie Canalway Trail (within Section 3, between Syracuse and Little Falls).

There is no better way to experience the trail and the local Mohawk Valley region than with a comfortable night’s rest and the best-in-town homemade breakfast, specially prepared for you in the morning.  With all the comforts of home, we deliver a level of personalized service and exceptional hospitality you won’t find at chain hotels near Herkimer.

Immerse yourself in the historic charm of our 1800s Colonial-style house – featuring four guest rooms with modern amenities, comfortable bedding, private bathrooms, free Wi-Fi, parking, and bicycle storage.

Book directly at grand-colonial.com or by phone at (315) 982-5004.  Cancellation is free for all direct booking reservations.