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Explore the best rated trails in Ithaca, NY, whether you're looking for an easy walking trail or a bike trail like the Auburn-Fleming Trail and South Hill Recreation Way . With more than 22 trails covering 453 miles you're bound to find a perfect trail for you. Click on any trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.
Lots of places on the trail where it is almost all grass with just a dirt rut the size of a tire. Very bumpy, lots of rocks and lots of walnuts when we rode in October. Wouldn't ride this with a street bike. Waterfalls were beautiful.
About a 45 minute ride on the Erie Canal path ,starting at the Medina lift bridge, through farmland and villages (Middleport, Gasport) herons that are absolutely not afraid of you! Beautiful in the fall!
My husband and I started in Canandaigua and almost reached Stanley before turning around. The single track trail was nice and flat in places, we would be roll big along and then bam! hit a section with roots. The scenery was nice but we will not return because of the bumpy ride.
We enjoyed a leisurely ride on the trail on an unseasonably hot September day. There was enough shade along the way to make it pleasant. There’s nothing but a parking lot at Dresden end where we elected to turn around but looks like food and Seneca lake are just a blocks away. Note that the elevation at Pen Yan is a few hundred feet higher than at Dresden so we definitely worked harder going back. As for those who complained about tree roots, bugs, etc. we didn’t have any issues this day.
As per note on South Trailhead barricade: Aug 9 - Sept 20 expect daily trail closures due to the repair of a high-voltage line. I biked this awesome trail Aug 9 late afternoon & there was a construction truck sometime in the middle of the trail just finishing up & departing. Probably hit or miss until Sept 20 as to whether they are working on the lines or not. Today is a Wednesday… it’s 3pm. My guess would be that it would be open before 9 AM and after 5 PM and on the weekends but IDK 5 stars bc it’s a great trail
You start out in a lovely park and you end in a lovely park. In the middle, figuratively speaking, there is a wonderful farmers market. If you go on a weekend then the trail has a bit of foot and bike traffic so if time and speed are important, use this trail during off hours. But for a pleasant ride it is terrific. The one down side is it is poorly marked. the signs are small and there are a number of alternate paths. signs are facing one way but not the other. But not too bad. I recommend this trail if you are looking for an easy outing with no hills and meeting nice people.
We enjoyed this ride mid morning on a July day. Meandering along the waterfront, watching kids learn to row at the park, to the marina at the NW end. Osprey platform past the Marina with fledging ospreys. Somehow we did7mikes out fledge age
Relatively level crushed gravel trail makes for an enjoyable ride through forested areas for around 5 miles. Paved trail continues through Seneca Lake State Park for 2 additional miles. Very relaxing ride along the top of Seneca Lake. Total length of trail approximately 7 miles. Highly recommended.
Just completed biking the Keuka Outlet Trail in Penn Yan, NY. What an awesome ride! Trail is relatively flat and well maintained. A few tree roots here and there but overall very enjoyable ride even for a hybrid road bike! Many old mill sites along the trail add to the adventure. Highly recommended.
Reading prior reviews almost crossed this trail off our "to do" list, but so glad we didn't. First of all, this is NOT a flat rail trail, which is good if you are looking for a little more of a challenging ride that's not just another rail trail. There is 650' elevation gain over the 14 miles from Watkins Glen to EK Birding Trail parking lot just south of Pine Valley which is currently the southernmost parking area for the trail we found as of 7/2023.
Surfaces range from rough and smooth gravel to dirt/grass to asphalt trail and roads. Much of the trail is shaded and in the woods and while not groomed, nothing was overgrown.
Plenty of places to stop for water or a snack/meal along the way. There was also a bike repair stand on the trail by the Post Office in Millport just before the pedestrian bridge over Route 14. Hardly any other bikes on the trail and only a few walkers which was surprising for such a beautiful sunny and not too hot July Saturday afternoon.
There are a few sections on the southern end close to heavily traveled and noisy Route 14. Still don't miss the southern section if you like a little non-technical single and double track through the woods and a covered pedestrian bridge which goes over Route 14.
Just south of Watkins Glen you go through the quaint town of Montour Falls where you can visit the unique Shequaga Falls Park just off the trail on South Genesee Street. Once you leave Montour Falls you'll go through the Catharine Creek Wildlife Management Area and past several marinas on the run into Watkins Glen.
Last 1-2 miles of northern section of the trail is through the town of Watkins Glen to get to the beautiful marina at the southern end of Seneca Lake. Watkins Glen has lots of shops and restaurants including a harbor side brew pub and eatery where you can sit on the wharf and sip craft beers and watch sailboats on the lake.
Only complaint is trail is not well-marked, but if you use Traillink App trail map you can use the your location feature to get you back on track quickly. We did not experience any dead cellphone service areas on our trip.
Is this trail for everyone? Depends, since whatever you ride it's what you choose to make of it. If you are looking for a more social ride with less challenging terrain start your trip from Watkins Glen since wherever you decide to turn around it's all downhill back to the marina. Either way it's worth checking out this trail for yourself!
*PLEASE NOTE that the portion from Bridge Street to the Onondaga Creek, Syracuse NEEDS UPDATING on the Trail map, as connecting trail is now available and this isn't reflected in the map.* Today was our 3rd ride (each out and back) on this trail, completing the section from Port Byron to the Inner Harbor in Syracuse. Today's ride in nice weather was 21 miles round trip to the Camillus Museum from Syracuse. We enjoyed the museum and the newer section that is paved along the west side of Onondaga Lake from the Fair Grounds parking area to the south part of the lake. We did miss a turn heading up the hill to turn off the trail to the parking area so we could cross 690; not sure there was clear signage on that; there was going back down. We were able to go through the portion on the NYS Fairgrounds and noted that this is not open to biking during the colder months (I believe Oct-April 1); it wouldn't be hard to go around, but signage would be helpful on that, too. Signs for this portion of the Empire State Trail were quite good otherwise. Since we haven't had much rain in the past month, trail conditions were excellent on today's portion. Least favorite was the road portion (or "sidewalk ride") on Hiawatha Blvd as it was very busy. Parts of the portion we did today is hillier than most sections; it was not difficult for us "intermediate level" bikers, but parts wouldn't be the best for younger children or somebody who hadn't biked in a while.
Starting in Colonie in the parking lot on rt9 it was a great ride headed towards Schenectady. Smooth paved surface. A little on a local road but minimal car traffic and clearly marked. Plenty of bench’s and stopping areas along the way.
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