Davidson Avenue Lock -- 5 Mile Lock

Attn: Access to the parking area at this entrance is temporarily closed -- 8/25/08-late October

(10/11/08) Update to Davidson Avenue/5 Mile Lock Temporary Closure.
  • The parking lot here is closed and PSE&G crews have prepared a path from the parking lot to the canal and river. Bicycle and pedestrian access is still possible. The towpath itself remains open, but the D&R Office says that it might be closed in the near future for a short time. 
The Davidson Avenue Lock is also known as 5-mile lock. This lock, like the other locks on the canal, has been converted into a sluice. There's a 5-6 foot change in the canal level at this sluice, and it seems to be a favorite site for many fishermen.

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There's parking for about 8-10 cars at this entrance, but since it is adjacent to the interchange of I-287 and Easton Avenue (Exit 10) getting there by car is a bit tricky as there access only from Easton Avenue westbound. This means going around the interchange and under I-287 and onto Easton Avenue in the right lane so that you can turn into the parking lot.

By bike, it's a bit easier as there is a sidewalk/bikepath on the north side of Easton Avenue between Cedar Grove Lane and Davidson Avenue. Cross Easton at one of these two lights and use the bikepath. Incidentally, Cedar Grove is fairly wide and has a bike lane on both sides. Davidson is wide and relative lightly used on weekends.

This entrance is the only one with easy access to hotels; there are at least 10 of them within a mile of this entrance -- you can use the map above to find them or enter "hotels near davidson avenue in somerset, nj" into the search box below. (Note: The Quality Inn on the corner of Easton and World's Fair has a swimmable (~22 yds with lane ropes) lap pool.) There is a large drug store and other shops at Easton and Cedar Grove. West of this entrance Easton Avenue narrows and the speed limit drops as it becomes Main Street in South Bound Brook. In short, this is quite suitable for bikers -- note that there is rigorous enforcement of the lowered speed limit in this area.

There's a selection of shops and a few restaurants between here and the Queens Bridge entrance, mostly closer to Queens Bridge than to here.

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