The point gained enabled the Minstermen to squeeze into the final play-offs slot but also allowed the Magpies to establish an eight-point lead over the chasing pack.
York, determined to end a recent losing run, were clearly fired up for a battle.
And the ding-dong exchanges provided riveting entertainment for a crowd of 1,157, which included a sizeable following of City supporters.
Chorley began with real purpose and a penetrating move down the left culminated in an inviting low centre from Adam Blakeman which Connor Hall just failed to convert from six yards.
But it was York who went ahead in the 16th minute following a quick break down the right, Kurt Willoughby at the far post tapping in the resulting low centre.
The high-tempo contest continued unabated but defences gave solid protection to both keepers.
Chorley equalised in spectacular style after 50 minutes.
Instead of delivering a free-kick from near the corner-flag into goalmouth, Blakeman pulled the ball back to an unmarked Willem Tomlinson, who from 20 yards hammered an unstoppable first-time shot into the roof of the net.
Half-chances came and went for both sides until the 79th minute when Billy Whitehouse gave the Magpies the scent of victory with a low cross-shot from outside the box which found its way into the far corner of the net.
But in keeping with this always finely-balanced contest, the lead lasted only a couple of minutes, Mitch Hancox from some 22 yards drilling a York equaliser low into the corner past a possibly unsighted Matt Urwin.
"A draw was probably a fair result,” said Magpies boss Jamie Vermiglio.
"We’ve put in a good performance and pressed with intensity against a very strong York team.
"Will Tomlinson’s goal was simply top-drawer.”CHORLEY: Urwin, Halls, Leather, Baines, Whitehouse, Calveley, Sampson (Blyth 90+2), Tomlinson, Blakeman, Alli (Shenton 76), Hall (Holmes 62). Subs (not used): Carroll, Henley.