A towpath is the route adjacent to a waterway where horses walk as they tow small canal boats. The combination of animal power with flotation was critical to the movement of people and goods prior to railroads and in areas where waterways outnumbered routes on solid ground.

Web Resources

The last horse-drawn barge on the River Lea, near Waltham Abbey (1955)
Look at a photograph of a towpath in The Chelmer Canal Trust's Newsletter, June 2006, Issue 33.