Richmond Aqueduct

Richmond Aqueduct
Second Largest Aqueduct Built on the Enlarged Erie Canal (1856-1917)

Trail System

This page was updated October 2012 to reflect the progress that has been made in developing the park's trail system. 

The park includes an extensive system of trails that are presently being developed to guide the visitor to each site component as well as provide a safe place to just take a walk. Because of the diversified nature of the Park, the trails system is being designed to include the names of trails as well as a maps for our two trailhead kiosks. Several trails have been designed to circle or loop to  create more interest. The trails are connecting from one to another in a well marked manner to avoid confusion. Some handicap accessibility will be available in the future, but for the most part because of the nature of the land it will be difficult on many of the trails.

Funding from Cayuga County Creating Healthy Places Program is assisting the Town with signage, benches and kiosks to enhance the visitor's experience. Two informational kiosks located at the High Street and Chapman Road trail entrances will identify the trails with maps and park information. Four benches have been placed along the Byron Lapp Memorial Trail and Aqueduct Trail. Parks and Trails, NY is offering technical assistance to the Design Committee as we move into further development. As a point of interest along the Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor, a panel will be placed on the High Street kiosk that shows a map of where we are located along the 365 mile canalway corridor.

Trail #1- Byron Lapp Memorial Trail - High Street Trailhead

Oct 13, 2012 - Mike Riley and Mel Carner

The trail was named in memory of This trail was named in memory of town supervisor, Byron Lapp who was instrumental in acquiring eight parcels of private property for parkland use. It is located off Route 90 and Erie Street on High Street just north of the firehouse. It is well formed as part of the Enlarged Erie Canal towpath and is the backbone of the Park, connecting the hamlet to the Richmond Aqueduct Trail on Chapman Road, and most of the other trails and sites. The trailhead is located at the site of our newly completed historic mural by Dawn Jordan.

 Trail #2 - Aqueduct Trail -   Chapman Road Trailhead

Enter from Trail #1, the Byron Lapp Memorial Trail, or drive to the parking area off Chapman Road. This trail continues the towpath trail along the Enlarged Erie to the present day New York State Barge Canal System. Here is the site of the famous Richmond Aqueduct, built in 1854, that carried the Enlarged Erie Canal waters over the Seneca River. It was nearly 895 feet long, with 31 arches spanning the river. It was dismantled in 1917, and today there remains seven arches on the east side in Montezuma and three arches on the west in the Town of Tyre, Seneca County.

 Trail #3 - Lock 62 Trail Near Site of Clinton's Ditch/Lock 62

Stan Longyear & Jim Decker install trail sign post at entrance of Lock 62 Trail
The trail is entered from the Aqueduct Trail at the Chapman Road. It will connect just south of the Lock 62 remains on the original Erie Canal (Clinton's Ditch), and then follow the route of the old canal to the river. Once at the aqueduct it loops back along the Aqueduct Trail. Future plans are to connect this trail to another at the river north to another park entrance near the Seneca River bridge on Route 31. Another parking area and canoe and kayak launch would be developed. The trail will then loop back to the trailhead entrance on Chapman Road.  One challenge with this trail is a small portable bridge will need to be constructed to cross a stream that enters in Seneca River. 

Paul & Bunny Baker help CCC students GPS Papermill site

Trail #4 - Papermill Trail - Berm Side of Enlarged Erie Canal
The trail starts at the Chapman Road just south of the trailhead and follows the berm side of the enlarged Erie Canal west to the Papermill site. From here  it continues west to connect with the Aqueduct Trail.

It will offer a view of the  Richmond Aqueduct from its south side.  Much of the route is cleared, however, the trail surface is very rutted and wet and needs some improvements to cross the Enlarged Canal, and to climb the bank to the Aqueduct Trail. 

Oct 13, 2012 - Jim Decker & Stan Longyear - Trail Clearing
Trail #5 - Drumlin Trail - Resevior

This beautiful wooded trail meanders along the boarder of the Montezuma Wildlife Refuge and then gradually inclines to a resevior that was used by the papermill.  It was a well used ATV trail near the old papermill mill that curves around the south side of the drumlin. Other very steep ATV trails have cut into the north and west ends of the drumlin. However, this has lead to erosion of the hillside and it should be closed off or rebuilt with stairs to eliminate further erosion.

April 2012 - Clean Sweep clearing C&S Lock 11
Trail #6- C & S Lock 11 

This trail follows the berm side of the Enlarged Erie Canal east from the Chapman Road Trailhead. It follows an established trail around the old dry dock site to a new trail opened up by our logging project along the north side of original Clinton's Ditch. The canal here joined the Cayuga-Seneca Canal in 1828.  Just before looping back on the south of the canal is the site of Lock 11 on the C&S Canal. On the return back to Chapman Road is a marsh area to the south with future plans for an ADA accessible birding platform area.

Trail #7 - Basin/Downtown
This is not so much a trail as a described route. This trail would begin at the Byron Lapp Memorial Trail on High Street and proceed along Erie Street across Route 90 onto Dock Street at the Memorial Park and Playground and Town Offices. It contains a walking/running track around the outside of the ball fields which was once a basin for the Enlarged Erie Canal. Little work needs to be done here aside from signage.

Trail #8 - Old Village Cemetery

This is another described route. Beginning at High Street, Byron Lapp Memorial trailhead the visitor will be guided to the cemetery in town. Other routes will be incorporated into this route to add interest such as taking the visitor to the place where the first house once stood.