Tour the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) and The C&O Canal Saturday, October 19 – Saturday, October 26, 2019. Two trails, 8 days, 1 ride, 334 miles. $845
This ride is a combination of two amazing trails. First, you’ll ride the Great Allegheny Passage Trail (150 miles) for days 1-4, from Pittsburgh to Cumberland MD, from Saturday, October 19-22. You’ll spend the night, resting, eating, and relaxing in Cumberland. The next day, October 23, we will transport the group to Georgetown, Washington DC where you will begin riding the C&O Canal (184 miles) for days 5-8. The ride ends in Cumberland MD, where the Adventure began and your car is parked. This ride is best suited for seasoned riders and others who have planned on their “bucket list” to conquer BOTH the GAP and the C&O Canal in one GREAT ADVENTURE!
Day 1: 40 Miles
Saturday, October 19
Point State Park, Pittsburgh (GAP mile 150) to Cedar Creek Park near West Newton (GAP mile 110)
Leave your car in Cumberland and we’ll transport riders and gear to Point State Park in Pittsburgh where the trail begins. After enjoying a specially prepared box lunch we’ll ride together (22 miles) to the first rest stop just to make sure everyone is ready to go. This day you’ll see the Monongahela River and cycle past former steel towns on your way to Cedar Creek Park. We’ll cross the Hot Metal Bridge, the Youghiogheny River Bridge, and others as we cruise on our way. You can linger in any number of places before grabbing a cold beverage at a cool rest stop in West Newton. Before you know it, you’re riding into camp at beautiful Cedar Creek Park where you’ll be treated to homemade hors d’oeuvre’s and a relaxing meal around the campfire. Hotel option, Comfort Inn, 1.5 miles from camp.
Day 2: 50.3 Miles
Sunday, October 20
Cedar Creek Park (GAP mile 110) to Confluence PA (GAP mile 61)
Rise and shine and get ready for a yummy made-to-order breakfast. Take down your tent, choose your trail-side snacks, listen to the briefing and off you go! Today you’ll pass by some typical coal patch company towns, perhaps visit a restored train station, and discover the remains of old coke furnaces. This area was once the king of coal mining and coke production and it boasted as having more millionaires than anywhere else in the country! You will enjoy the scenic beauty of the Yough River Gorge today and have a spectacular view as you cross the Ohiopyle High Bridge. Take a moment to read the informative signs about the history of this area. Base camp tonight is the Outflow Camping Area in Confluence where you’ll get a tasty snack, a shower, and head to the great food and drink in town. Be back in time to relax by the fire, then it’s off to sleep. Hotel option, one of the several Confluence guest houses just minutes away.
Day 3: 18.6 Miles
Monday, October 21
Confluence (GAP mile 61) to Rockwood (GAP mile 43)
Wake up and smell the coffee because today, right after your made to order breakfast, you will get to plan your day. Spend extra time at camp, explore the offerings at Confluence or, our favorite, visit the Frank Lloyd Wright House. Today is an easy day of riding so relax and take your time on the way to Rockwood. When you arrive at the Husky Haven Campground we will have a delicious dinner ready to be served. Set up your tent, take a shower, enjoy the campfire, and have a few cold drinks at the Rock City Café. Hotel option, Husky Haven Guest House or other nearby guest houses.
Day 4: 44.6 Miles
Tuesday, October 22
Rockwood (GAP mile 43) to Cumberland (GAP mile 0)
Breakfast is always homemade and always a treat, so enjoy every delicious bite. Take down your tent, get your cue sheet briefing, and head down the trail for the final day of scenic bicycle touring. Today you will cross the Salisbury Viaduct, a long, very high steel trestle bridge that will take your breath away. You will also cross the Keystone Viaduct, pass through the Big Savage Tunnel and two other tunnels. Once you get to the Eastern Continental Divide you will be treated to 23 miles of downhill riding. You will end your GAP Adventure in Cumberland, Maryland around 3 o’clock. You can enjoy the town, check out the Visitor Center exhibits, get a bite to eat, and celebrate with friends. Tonight, we have hotel accommodations, double occupancy planned for you. Congratulations, you just experienced the satisfaction of riding 150 miles in 4 days on the Great Allegheny Passage!
Day 5: Ride 54 Miles
Wednesday, October 23
From C&O Canal mile marker 0, Georgetown, to Brunswick Family Campground, Brunswick, MD, mile marker 54.
Leave your car in Cumberland, Maryland and we’ll transport riders and gear to Georgetown, Washington D.C., mile marker 0, where a delicious lunch spread will be served, trail-side snacks selected, and memorable photos taken. After an informative briefing, you’ll enjoy riding past the Georgetown Visitor’s Center, the Capital Crescent Trail, Fletchers Boat House, several locks, a number of historical houses, and a Canal Quarters, all in the first five miles! Soon you’ll be enjoying the cascading rapids of Great Falls at mile marker 14, one of the most spectacular natural landmarks in the Washington D.C. area. Next, it’s on to White’s Ferry at mile 35.5 which is a great place to stop for a refreshing drink while watching a working ferry boat shuttle motorist, cyclists, and pedestrians to Leesburg, Virginia. From here you will pass the Monocacy Aqueduct at mile 42.2 and the Point of Rocks tunnel at mile 48.4 before you ride into The Brunswick family Campground at mile 54 where you can relax, enjoy a warm shower, and quick bite to eat. This evening you’ll be celebrating a great ride while dining out in in historic Brunswick. Hotel option: The Travelodge in Brunswick.
Day 6: Ride 45.4 Miles
Thursday, October 24
From Brunswick Family Campground, Brunswick, MD, mile marker 54, to, Williamsport, mile marker 99.4.
It’s going to be a GREAT day! We’re serving up the coffee at 7am, preparing your farm fresh homemade breakfast, and putting a smile on your face as the trail calls you to ride! In just 8 miles you’ll see the Harpers Ferry, WV footbridge that crosses the Potomac River at mile maker 60.7. Take a moment to enjoy the breath-taking views from the scenic bridge, spend some time in the historic Civil War town, and grab an ice cream before heading down the trail again. Next up is the Antietam Aqueduct at mile 69.3 and Shepherdstown at mile 72.8. If you feel up to crossing the bridge, this great little town is the oldest in West Virginia and offers an exciting mix of old and new. Don’t spend too much time sightseeing though because Big Slackwater at mile 85.6 offers 2.7 miles of unobstructed views of the Potomac River that you won’t soon forget. Then it’s on Williamsport at marker 99.4 where we’ll stay tonight. Explore the town, get a drink, put your feet up and rest at the Desert Rose Café or another fine establishment. We have a super fine evening planned tonight that we think you’ll truly enjoy. Hotel option: Red Roof Inn, Williamsport.
Day 7: Ride 56.7 Miles
Friday, October 25
From Williamsport, mile 99.4, to Paw Paw, WV Campground mile 156.1.
If you thought yesterday was fun, you’re going to love today and it starts with our delicious homemade breakfast. Maybe we’ll serve pancakes with hand cut hash browns. Maybe you will smell omelets with fresh, thick-slice bacon, or we could surprise you with another amazing treat! It all starts at 7 am so get your coffee, stow your gear, pump your tires and listen up for the briefing. Today you can take a quick side trip of only 0.3 miles to Fort Frederick State Park at mile 112.1. Built in 1756 it offers a glimpse of history and a Visitor’s Center with gifts, flush toilets, showers, and snacks! Pay attention, because at mile marker 113 we’re leaving the dirt path of C&O Canal for the paved Western Maryland Rail Trail (WMRT) that parallels the canal for 22.5 really fast miles! Along the way you’ll pass through Hancock, Maryland (C&O mile 124.5, WMRT exits 9-11) where you’ll want to stop for a bite to eat. After leaving Hancock and exiting the WMRT it’s back on the C&O where you’ll soon pass the Sideling Hill Creek Aqueduct (mile 136.6) on your way to Little Orleans at mile 140.9 which is known for Bill’s Place and the famous “dollar bill ceiling,” a bar and grill that’s almost as famous as the Canal itself! As if Bill’s wasn’t enough, you’ll soon be looking into the 3,118-foot, pitch-black Paw Paw Tunnel that runs from mile 155.2 to 155.8! This amazing work of human achievement is one of the major features of the canal so get out your camera, turn on your headlight and enjoy the show. At this point if you’re tired, excited, happy and grateful for the ride, you’re not alone because it has been a GREAT DAY and you made it to our camp for the night! Set up your tent, grab a snack from our trailside kitchen, and refresh yourself with a cool drink and well-deserved rest. Hotel option: a local B&B.
Day 8: Ride 28.4 Miles
Saturday, October 26
From Paw Paw, WV, mile marker 156.1 to Cumberland, MD and the C&O Canal Terminus, mile marker 184.5.
Rise and shine! By now you have made some new friends, laughed around the campfires and enjoyed the fullness of the C&O Canal and The Great Allegheny Passage! Today is the last day and you’ll have an easy ride into Cumberland MD. Enjoy the day, take in the scenery, and look for us as you ride into town. We’ll be standing by to greet you, take your photo, and offer whatever assistance we can provide to make even this last day special. Pack up your car, tour the town, grab a bite to eat and be sure to tell your friends how successful you’ve been!