Lockport Cave Raceway Tour

Lockport Tunnel

Useful Information

Location: Near downtown Lockport on Hwy 78. Tours start at 2 Pine Street.
Open: 05-MAY to 21-MAY Sat, Sun 12-16.
22-MAY to 16-JUN daily 12-16.
17-JUN to Labour Day daily 10-17.
05-SEP to 09-OCT Mon-Fri 12, 13:30, 15, Sat, Sun, Hol 12-16.
Tours every hour on the hour.
Fee: Adults USD 8.50, Children (4-12) USD 5.75. Plus tax. [2006]
Classification: SubterraneaTunnel. water tunnel, raceway.
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: L=741 m, T=13 °C.
Guided tours: D=90 min., includes 20 min underground boat ride.
Address: Mailing Address: Lockport Cave Co., PO Box 77, Olcott, NY 14126
Tour Office: Lockport Cave Raceway Tour, 21 Main St, Lockport, NY 14094, Tel: +1-716-438-0174 E-Mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1858 engineered by Birdsill Holly.
1909 the use of the tunnel stopped and it was sealed.
1973 rediscovered by Thomas Callahan, who read about it.
197? Hydraulic Race Co. was reformed as a non-profit organization to run tours through the old cave raceway. Tours were run for 5 years.
1995 The Lockport Cave Co. began running tours.


Lockport Cave is, despite the name, an artificial tunnel, built as a bypass for water. It was an important part of the Erie Canal, which linked the east coast with the middle west. It was engineered by a friend of Thomas Edison, Birdsill Holly. It was built by the labour of Irish immigrants.

Some years later the competition of the railroad ended the era of the canal system. The canal was now used as a raceway for water to produce hydroelectric power. So the second part of the name is explained.

After its rediscovery, the tunnel was opened to the public by Thomas Callahan. It is an interesting historic and geological sight. Part of the tour is an underground boat ride.

Nearby the Erie Canal and Lockport Locks are relics of the Industrial Revolution. It is planned, to open a continuous multi-use trail system along the historic and scenic Canal System. Many portions of this trail already exist. This development is supervised by the New York State Thruway Authority.