Lock 6 Feeder Lock Trail Improvements
The National Park Service, Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, proposes to undertake some improvements to the existing feeder lock trail, near Lock 6, to address several severe erosion areas at the take-out and along the river bank sections of the trail. The repairs include a redesign of the trail connection with the towpath at Lock 6 and minor trail relocation along two short sections of the river bank area to move the trail away from the edge of the embankment.
The feeder channel/lock was historically a channel that directed Potomac River water into the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal during the operational period of the canal. The feeder channel/lock, today, is used by white water boaters for training and pleasure boating. As a result of this permitted activity, a trail has been developed over the years that connect the put-in and take-out areas of the feeder lock.
The feeder lock trail has been the subject to three other repair endeavors since 2000. Those repairs were made in place and failed to correct the erosion problem. The new repairs will address the cause of the erosion and make the trail more sustainable and will reduce the recurring impact to the areas adjacent to the trail.
The most recent work was undertaken in 2004 as a volunteer project. The repairs were compromised by 2008, due to flooding. The location of the trail/towpath intersection is a low spot on the towpath that will continue to promote flooding and damage to the trail. Therefore, the minor relocation of the trail/towpath connection will resolve the flood damage issue and make the trail more sustainable and prevent down-slope movement of towpath and trail materials.
The park's Interdisciplinary Team reviewed the project for impacts to natural and cultural resources. The project does not pose any serious or long-term effects to the environmental, historical, cultural, archeological, or visual resources. It meets categorical exclusion #C.12 – Minor trail relocations, development of compatible trail networks on logging roads or other established routes.
The project also meets the National Historic Preservation Act/Section 106 Programmatic Agreement, Exclusions #IV.B 6 – rehabilitation and widening of existing trails, walks, paths, and sidewalks within previously disturbed areas.
For further information regarding this project, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator at 1850 Dual Highway, Suite 100, Hagerstown, MD 21740.