Upstate New York and southern Vermont

driving, biking, hiking May 2006

Erie Canal, Waterford, NY;

Delaware and Hudson Rail Trail, southern Vermont;

Jackson, Washington County, NY


From a sign at the Champlain Canal bypass in Waterford, NY:

The Champlain Canal, built in the decade following the War of 1812, included a series of side cut locks that bypassed crowded urban ports. Enlarged and modified over the years, some of these locks not only survived, but continued in use. This side cut now helps control the water level between Erie Barge Canal locks.

Those who favored building the Champlain Canal saw profit in connecting Lake Erie, Lake Champlain, and the Hudson River. A canal along this natural waterway provided access to timber, iron ore, and marble in New York and Vermont. Canal commerce, the predicted in an 1812 report, also would “strengthen the bands of union” and “preserve brotherly affection in the great American family.”