The last two days we have been on the Erie Barge Canal near Lockport. On Tuesday we took a 2 hour boat ride and today we biked 22 miles on the old towpath. The boat ride went through two locks that had a total change in elevation of 49 feet. On the original Erie Canal there were five locks to get the boats over that spot, the Niagara Escarpment, and bring them up to nearly the same elevation as Lake Erie. Lockport was the only place on the canal with a double lock system. Five going up and 5 coming down. The remains of the old lock wall are still there and the water flows over them in a series of waterfalls. There are several draw bridges along the canal, in Lockport one person operates two bridges. After you go under one he gets in his car and drives one block to let the boat go under the other. Because much of the canal in this area is on the side of the hill a canal walker checks 12 miles each day to make sure there are no leaks. We also found out that the canal is drained in the winter. In several places they have built gates that are lowered in the fall and the water is emptied out. In the spring the gates are raised and the canal fills up for the season. We saw replicas of old boats traveling the canal. These can be rented and sleep up to six people. The bike path we were on is the old towpath of the original canal and will eventually enable you to bike along the canal from Buffalo to Albany.
"Z" IS FOR ZEBRAS (#AtoZChallenge)
3 hours ago