Windsor Locks Canal State Park Trail

Quick Facts

Windsor Locks Canal State Park Trail

Connecticut

(860) 242-1158

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

The 4.5 mile Windsor Locks State Park Canal Trail follows the historic towpath of this 170 plus year-old historic waterway. The canal's many vantage points offer the trail user scenic vistas of both the Connecticut River and the old canal. Today's paved surface lies atop the towpath, the actual walkway which animals, often mules, hauled the freight barges by rope north and south along the waterway. The trail is open from April 1 through November 15, one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset. There are no fees for the trail. Pets on a maximum seven foot leash are permitted.

Map of Windsor Locks Canal Trail (CT)

Latitude, Longitude: 41.930379, -72.630100

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Activities

  • Bicycling

    The trail is a great place to bike. The canal path is well-maintained with either asphalt or gravel, and is wide enough for comfortable passing.

  • Fishing

    Between the Connecticut River and Enfield rapids, this is a fun place to set up your fishing rod. Call 860-424-3105 for information on permits.

  • Hiking

    The trail is a good flat hike, with plenty of wildlife and water to see on both sides. Parking is available at both ends, making it easy to hike as much or as little as you like. Look for a wide variety of wildlife and excellent examples of 19th century stonework in the stream crossing aqueducts and bridges.

  • Historic Sites

    The Windsor Locks Canal was constructed between June 1827 and November 1829 to skirt the Enfield rapids in the Connecticut River. The continuous water connection from the Connecticut River valley farmlands above the rapids through to Hartford and points south provided farmers with expanded markets and investors with freight fees in this business venture. Today's paved surface lies atop the towpath, the actual walkway which animals, often mules, hauled the freight barges by rope north and south along the water way. Author Charles Dickens was a notable visitor who passed through the canal on February 7, 1842. Later came factories along the banks of the canal, and now the recreating public is the largest user of this historic remnant of Connecticut's commercial and industrial past.

Directions

Driving

From I-91 Southbound: Take Exit 47W in Enfield to Route 190. Follow 190 west across Connecticut River to Route 159 (East Street). Turn left, then take immediate left onto Canal Road. Park at end of road on left.

From I-91 Northbound: Take Exit 42 in Windsor Locks to Route 159. Take Route 159 north to Route 140 east (Bridge Street). Turn right, cross canal bridge, then take immediate left onto roadway between canal and factory. Parking is at north end of factory complex.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(860) 242-1158

Links