Tonawanda Creek Professional Guide
Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook
"Tonawanda Creek runs northward to Batavia from its source in Wyoming County south of Attica, then turns west, eventually emptying into the Niagara River just north of Buffalo. Before reaching the river, however, it joins the Erie Canal in Pendleton (near the downstream end of this section). Although some whitewater exists in the creek’s upper reaches, the 20-mile section included here drops less than one foot per meandering mile, resulting in modest to no measurable current most of the time. A study in contrasts, Tonawanda Creek alternates between ferns and fields, camps and woodlots, wooded shores and muddy banks, clear sailing and annoying logjams. Beaver have contributed quite a bit to the logjams, some longstanding, judging by the jewelweed growing out of some logs. Though houses do not crowd the banks in the upper reaches and few motorboats ply these waters, below Route 78 in Millersport development increases significantly. Where tree density remains low, beautiful, aroma-laden honeysuckle alternates with irises and dame’s rockets—a widespread escape from cultivation. Willows lean out over the water, nearly closing the canopy. Wild grapevines drape over much of the shoreline vegetation. Three maples grow in profusion: mostly silver maple, along with lesser amounts of red maple and box elder. Other common trees include ash, basswood, white oak, black walnut, and cottonwood. Habitat type: slow-flowing stream"