Looking to take on the 750 mile Empire State Trail by cycling? Watch this video for my tips on biking part of all of it. Meet “Black Girls Do Bike: Capitol Region NY’s” inspiring Allison Joseph in Albany and hear about the trail in Hudson Crossing Park in Schuylerville. See what organizations like Rochester Accessible Adventures are doing to make the trail accessible to people with disabilities and mobility challenges.
Some things for cyclists to keep in mind is that the trail from New York City to Albany to Buffalo is about 550 Miles, and around 85% of that is off-road trail. Probably three-quarters of that is paved. When you’re in the western part of the state, you get into some stone dust sections. The Hudson Valley section is entirely paved. Having cycled portions of it myself, I found that it’s awesome because there are so many fun restaurants, craft breweries, historic sites, campsites and more that are right along the trial. If you like to combine great food and drinks with your outdoor adventures, there are lots of options.
Much of the trail is along rail trails, historic railroad beds which have been repurposed into trails. These generally flat areas are accessible for cyclists of varying abilities. While I hopscotched different sections of the trail, some people do ride along for multiple days, staying at campsites, nearby hotels, and B&Bs.
Lots of organizations use the trail for recreation. If you’re in Albany, look out for members of the Capital Region chapter of Black Girls Do Bike, which supports a community of women of color who share a passion for cycling. In Fairport, check in with Rochester Accessible Adventures, an organization that can provide rental equipment for people with disabilities, including bikes and kayaks for the section of the Erie Canalway Trail and beyond. Looking to rent a bike on your travels? Check out BigFoot Bike Rentals & Tours in Schuylerville and for those with mobility challenges, Rochester Accessible Adventures.
Learn more about the Empire State Trail in our upcoming “New York’s Empire State Trail” PBS episode.