Just when you start feeling cocky …
For the most part, we’ve been clicking along on our end-to-end walk of the Erie Canalway Trail. We’ve covered more than 260 miles plus unknown off-course mileage and we’re feeling pretty good about it.
Today’s was 14.5 miles of highway walking – our least favorite kind – but we started early to avoid as much heat as possible and to try and beat afternoon rain storms.
As we were chugging along Highway 5, we saw two cyclists coming our way. Each woman was pulling a trailer behind her bike and it was obvious they also were on a trip.
They were on their way to Niagara Falls, not far from where we started almost four weeks ago, and I asked where they started.
Our visit had to be brief because we were all racing the storm and they pedaled off with many questions swimming around in my head.
As we have walked, the trail has changed from time to time – on a road, on the barge canal, in a forest, along the old canal, along farmland, through a city, over bridges, under bridges.
We have been following a long stretch of trailway along the old canal ditch – sometimes containing little or no water. Friday, just after we passed through Oriskany, we began following the barge canal again and that means we were back to seeing working canal locks.
We came upon a small state park with lovely shady picnic tables and portable toilets. However, the park was on the opposite side of the canal! So, we had to cross over the top of the canal lock. It was like crossing the walkway over the gates of a castle, only there was a moat on both sides.
The walkway was a metal grate just wide enough for a person to walk. But I was highly motivated to get to the other side. I think I understand chickens crossing the road a little better now.
Oh, and we had to come back across to get back on the trail. And a short while later down the trail, the trail actually took us over the top of a lock, but I was braver this time!