tow·​path ˈtō-ˌpath How to pronounce towpath (audio)
: a path (as along a canal) traveled especially by draft animals towing boats

called also towing path

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web That section will probably run along city streets because the old canal towpath and railbed have long since been built over. Don Stacom, Hartford Courant, 24 Oct. 2022 Horses would walk alongside the canal on a towpath, pulling massive barges of coal at first, and then all kinds of other goods. Corey Buhay, Smithsonian Magazine, 13 July 2022 Planners also recently added a direct path connection between the bridge and the C&O Canal towpath below. Katherine Shaver, Washington Post, 17 June 2022 The towpath was busy with runners and cyclists, dog walkers and parents with strollers. Corey Buhay, Smithsonian Magazine, 13 July 2022 Flat Start in Georgetown on the southern portion of the C&O Canal Trail, and follow the canal’s former towpath southeast past rows of Colonial-style homes to Rock Creek Park Trail. Anna Callaghan, Outside Online, 25 Mar. 2019 Meyer’s artistic life has been overshadowed by her death: She was shot on the C&O Canal towpath in a murder that remains unsolved. Washington Post, 16 Mar. 2022 Keep your eyes and ears open because the towpath is popular with runners and cyclists. Washington Post, 26 Nov. 2021 There has never been a time when the walk down the towpath and across the rocks to the no-beaten-path above the river has been anything less than perfect. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, 26 Oct. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'towpath.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1788, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of towpath was in 1788

Dictionary Entries Near towpath

Cite this Entry

“Towpath.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition



tow·​path ˈtō-ˌpath How to pronounce towpath (audio)
: a path (as along a canal) traveled especially by animals (as horses or mules) towing boats

More from Merriam-Webster on towpath

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.