After holding the tour at reduced capacity in 2021 due to the pandemic, the annual eight-day, cross-state “Cycle the Erie Canal” bike tour returned at full capacity this year, departing from Buffalo on July 10 and arriving in Albany eight days later on July 17. 750 bikers from 40 states crossed New York State as part of the 24th Cycle the Erie Canal tour organized by the statewide nonprofit Parks & Trails New York.
Covering between 40 and 60 miles per day, cyclists travel along the Erie Canalway Trail, which is now more than 85 percent off-road. Since 2020, the Erie Canalway Trail has also served as the east-west section of the 750-mile Empire State Trail. Recent studies by Parks & Trails New York reveal that the Erie Canalway Trail receives over 3 million visits every year and generates an economic impact of over $253 million.
“Cycle the Erie Canal tour is a wonderful way to experience the Erie Canal. It’s fun, healthy, and good for the economy,” says Parks & Trails New York Executive Director Robin Dropkin. “We have cyclists aged 10 to 83 and they all get to experience what makes the Erie Canal and upstate New York so special.”
Riders spent the eight nights’ camping in Buffalo, Medina, Fairport, Seneca Falls, Syracuse, Rome, Canajoharie, and Schenectady, before finishing on Sunday, July 17 at Corning Preserve in Albany. For updates and the communities that riders are passing through, follow Parks & Trails New York on Facebook (@parksandtrailsny), Instagram (@parkstrailsny), or Twitter (@PTNY).