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Fall in Ohiopyle
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c&o trail
 -  + Has anyone ridden the c and o trail from Cumberland to DC alone? And how safe is it ? I myself don't see a problem but I'm open to any suggestions, comments.... By the way I'm 48 yrs old
ThanksDiscussion started 08/27/2012 08:45 PM by frank - 12 replies (last reply by FRANK,PITT at 09/11/2012 06:54 AM)
frank from pittsburgh on 08/27/2012 08:45 PM
Has anyone ridden the c and o trail from Cumberland to DC alone? And how safe is it ? I myself don't see a problem but I'm open to any suggestions, comments.... By the way I'm 48 yrs old
Thanks
Frank

 
lenny on 08/28/2012 04:16 AM
I have met many people over the years that ride the entire length solo, including women. If you are careful and have well maintained equipment. you will be ok. There is usually someone coming along every so often that can assist in other waysif you would have an accident. Are you in good bike shape, and are you confident in your skills?

 
FRANK, from PITT on 08/28/2012 07:39 AM
Thanks Lenny,...Three of us just rode the entire GAP last month in route to DC, but had to cut it short due to bad weather, time and a few other set backs. I'm confident I'm in good enough shape to do it. I'll just pace myself...also, I wont have to worry about anyone to hold me back to get on the trail as early as I want. Now, I am an amature rider and will have my work cut out but really feel I can get it done based on last month's GAP ride.

 
Hondo on 08/28/2012 08:41 AM
Frank,Im 56 and did both GAP and C&O this year.I got flooded out, lost in Pittsburgh, broke my chain, and attacked by geese and loved every minute of it. Im even giving thought to an out and back next year. You will really enjoy the freedom of solo riding and you are never really alone on the trail. All kinds of fun people to meet along the way. I find people let you know right away if they want your company or not and you the same. good luck.

 
JJB from Fairmont, WV on 08/28/2012 07:56 PM
Frank, on our last ride my wife got a flat tire and we were "broke down" on the trail. A perfect stranger stopped and offered us his only tire tube. Anytime we stopped we would almost always strike up a conversation with other bikers. We also, almost 100% of the time, ask people who are stopped on the side of the trail if they are O.K. I guess what I am saying is our experiences on the trail have been positive. We have never felt threatened or unsafe. I like to think that us cyclists are like minded and look out for each other. I suppose there are bad apples out there but we have never met them.

 
lenny on 08/29/2012 04:13 AM
Frank, I agree with all of the posters and regularly ride consecutive 60 to 70 mile days. I've done the Ride twice and will be doing it for the third time Sept. 9 thru 13. By the way I am 58.

 
Hondo on 08/29/2012 09:52 AM
Frank, if you have time for some mindless entertainment you can look at my ride on the gap/towpath I videotaped. Just go into Hondo Smith youtube. I cut it up into 9 videos.

 
vabiker23518 from williamsburg va on 08/29/2012 10:36 AM
I've been biking the C&O for 10 years and only had one bad experience...camped at a public campground just east of Cumberland that had vehicle access. Noisy drunks camped next door and were screaming and making threats to each other all night...was very happy to get away the next morning. Most hiker/biker campsites don't have vehicle access and thats where I stay!

 
FRANK from PITT on 08/30/2012 10:04 AM
First of all, Thank You All for you're imput; Greatly appreciated!!!....@ JJB--thanks, my recent experience on the trail has certaintly been positive. I myself felt pretty safe. It's just trying to convince my wife who's just worried sick....@ VIABIKER--thank you, I dont plan to camp this go round...1st night-Hancock(bunk house), 2nd Harper's Ferry (hostel) so I should be good....lastly Hondo---I actually watched your video before you even posted the link...the GEESE scene was FUNNY AS EVER!!! Glad to see you overcame all those obsticles. Curious how a chain can break. I think I may be tempted to carry a apare. THANKS AGAIN ALL!!!

 
lenny on 08/30/2012 07:13 PM
Don't buy a chain. Get a link repair kit for your size chain and a multi bike tool with a chain tool included. You will find it indispensable. Good Luck and Good Ride

 
FRANK,PITT on 08/30/2012 07:54 PM
Thank you much Lenny....will do!

 
Paul on 09/07/2012 01:34 PM
So far the folks I've met on the C&O have been pretty good. Know how to change a Flat. Don't camp near a road juncture. If you camp at the 15 Mile Camp Ground be aware Bill's Place tends to get rowdy on the weekends. Some boaters tend to get rowdy, but they are on Boats, but you can hear their music blasting on the WV shore. But all in all it seems fairly safe.
Best advice I can give, don't camp near a road juncture.

 
FRANK,PITT from PITT on 09/11/2012 06:54 AM
THANKS Paul for your imput. I plan to do this trip early Oct. I really didnt plan on truly camping--Hancocok(bunk house), Harpers Ferry(Hostel)--so the roudy boater dudes shouldnt be a problem...:) def. keep that in mind though. Thanks Paul


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How does it take to walk the 2 trails?
 -  + How long does it take to walk the two trails? How far could you get each day?
Discussion started 08/15/2012 07:02 PM by Carole - 2 replies (last reply by anonymous at 09/09/2012 10:51 PM)
Carole from DC area on 08/15/2012 07:02 PM
How long does it take to walk the two trails? How far could you get each day?

 
speedster on 08/16/2012 11:26 AM
Like as in a thru hike??

If so, its ~310 miles total distance. I'd say 15-20 miles a day would be averaging a pretty fair clip. So say anywhere from 3-4 wks, maybe..just a guess though, as I've never done it and of course everyone's results will vary..

 
Anonymous on 09/09/2012 10:51 PM
The C+O is an easy walk. If you're an experienced hiker/backpacker you shouldn't have any trouble putting in long days. The trail is almost flat and it's very smooth compared to something like the Appalachian Trail, which you'll cross near Harper's Ferry.
Resupply and laundry is no problem as you'll be going right past a lot of towns.


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October weather
 -  + Hi All. My inquiry is regarding the weather the first two weeks of October. Plan to leave Pittsburgh the 02Oct12 for D.C. What are the overnight temperatures?How wet does it get?
And how muddy ? A...
Discussion started 09/09/2012 08:55 PM by bikenbob - 0 replies
bikenbob from Hammond on 09/09/2012 08:55 PM
Hi All. My inquiry is regarding the weather the first two weeks of October. Plan to leave Pittsburgh the 02Oct12 for D.C. What are the overnight temperatures?How wet does it get?
And how muddy ? Are the trails still passable?
Will there be any leaf peeping that early?


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Water available
 -  + Doing Pittsburgh to DC next week. Is water easley available or should I take a Camelback?
Discussion started 09/07/2012 04:56 AM by Sloturtle - 2 replies (last reply by Sloturtle at 09/08/2012 07:41 AM)
Sloturtle from Ohio on 09/07/2012 04:56 AM
Doing Pittsburgh to DC next week. Is water easley available or should I take a Camelback?

 
lenny on 09/08/2012 06:47 AM
You need to carry enough water to make it to the next trail head there is cistern water about every 5 miles on the tow path, but I don't drink it, although others do. Major trail heads are about 30 miles apart on both the GAP and the C&O. I carry 2L of water for that distance in bottles. My wife on the other hand uses the same amount in a camelback. When are you leaving and from where? Wife and I leave tomorrow From Point Park,Look me up if your nearby, I' have a red helmet and yellow or blue shirt on, weather depending.

 
Sloturtle from Zanesville oh on 09/08/2012 07:41 AM
We are leaving Mon morn from Boston Pa 3 of us 1 has done the trail several times. He uses a camelback I was trying to get away from it but think I will use mine also. Stay away from cister water ugh. We plan to finish Fri late afternoon. Travel safe and enjoy. Ty for the forum site it has been interesting reading and help


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Best type of Bike
 -  + What is the best type of bike to use? I have a trek FX commuter bike and a road bike that I put cyclocross tires on for the winter.
Discussion started 09/05/2012 12:43 PM by Brettro - 2 replies (last reply by Doris at 09/06/2012 08:20 PM)
Brettro from Oakton VA on 09/05/2012 12:43 PM
What is the best type of bike to use? I have a trek FX commuter bike and a road bike that I put cyclocross tires on for the winter.

 
lenny on 09/05/2012 06:31 PM
I would prefer the FX as I ride a Fisher dual sport and they are quite similar. But you would be OK with cycloX tires...I think!

 
Doris from Elizabeth township on 09/06/2012 08:20 PM
I have a trex fx. Rode to dc 3 times. Put puncture resistant tires on this year and had no flats. Last year had 2 flats with regular tires. I love my fx and think it's a great bike for the trail.


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Hondo
 -  + Finally watched your trail ride video. Great stuff. Got me very excited about my upcoming ride. I had a thought, maybe next year all the people that post here could plan an out and back ride together,...
Discussion started 09/04/2012 04:31 AM by lenny - 2 replies (last reply by Hondo at 09/04/2012 09:27 AM)
lenny on 09/04/2012 04:31 AM
Finally watched your trail ride video. Great stuff. Got me very excited about my upcoming ride. I had a thought, maybe next year all the people that post here could plan an out and back ride together, some in the middle that would be convenient for all who wanted to join in. Think about it folks.

 
Hondo on 09/04/2012 08:32 AM
Hey Lenny, glad you liked it. It was total adlib and as you could see I dont take myself too seriously. The trip was a blast even with the chain, weather, geese, and next time Im taking a chain tool! You have a great site here.Very helpful.

 
Hondo on 09/04/2012 09:27 AM
Hey Lenny, one last note about my trip. You noticed I quit at Harpers Ferry. I parked my car there with the intention of riding to DC then riding back to Harpers Ferry but because I lost 2 days due to the chain and rain I had to bail out without making it to DC.I will knock that out next year.


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Hondo
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Breakaway??
 -  + How is your bike getting to Pgh?
Discussion started 08/13/2012 04:05 PM by lenny - 2 replies (last reply by lenny at 08/31/2012 07:32 PM)
lenny on 08/13/2012 04:05 PM
How is your bike getting to Pgh?

 
Breakaway from Glen Gardner NJ on 08/31/2012 01:41 PM
I was going to ship it to a bike store via FedEx Ground, but then a friend offered to drive me & my bike to PGH.

 
lenny on 08/31/2012 07:32 PM
OK.Good luck and have a great ride.s


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 -  + Received word from Amtrak on my latest inquiry concerning roll on service last pm. Not happening yet. I'm very disappointed, they seem to be dragging their feet on this one!
Discussion started 08/28/2012 04:19 AM by Linny - 0 replies
Linny on 08/28/2012 04:19 AM
Received word from Amtrak on my latest inquiry concerning roll on service last pm. Not happening yet. I'm very disappointed, they seem to be dragging their feet on this one!


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Slackwater Detour
 -  + Ok--has anyone ridden the trail on a weekend and avoided the detour??
Discussion started 08/25/2012 07:51 PM by Dana - 0 replies
Dana on 08/25/2012 07:51 PM
Ok--has anyone ridden the trail on a weekend and avoided the detour??


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Slackwater Detour
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slackwater detour open on weekend?
 -  + I heard from someone that biked through the c&o the other day that on saturday and sunday you can sneak through the gate and bike it anyway. He said he did it and showed photos. Has anyone else tried ...
Discussion started 08/02/2012 06:50 PM by sam - 5 replies (last reply by lenny at 08/25/2012 03:40 PM)
sam from pittsburgh on 08/02/2012 06:50 PM
I heard from someone that biked through the c&o the other day that on saturday and sunday you can sneak through the gate and bike it anyway. He said he did it and showed photos. Has anyone else tried this?

 
lenny on 08/03/2012 04:03 AM
Biked through what part,Big Slackwater?

 
Duncan on 08/07/2012 07:37 PM
I spoke with one of the head rangers at dam number 4 yesterday about the detour. He said it should be finished next month. I did not try to go there though. Our 8 yo had had enough riding for the day. It never ceases to amaze me that the NPS cares more for the bats in Indigo Tunnel than it does for the humans it forced on narrow country roads on bikes for YEARS!!!

 
JJB from Fairmont, WV on 08/07/2012 09:08 PM
We rode that detour, around Big Slackwater, on July 25th. They were repaving a long section of that road. We stood there, in among the traffic, waiting for the opposing traffic to come through the single open lane. Standing on hot, sticky, fresh pavement. It was nice and smooth once we got going but we held up traffic as no one could pass us. The detour was 6 miles in length. It will be nice to have that section of the C&O open.

 
Dana on 08/25/2012 11:12 AM
So any final word--can we ride the path at slackwater on weekends???

 
lenny on 08/25/2012 03:40 PM
NO. Not lawfully.


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slackwater detour open on weekend?
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 -  + Going to Williamsport tomorrow and riding east to see if I can get on the Slackwater re build. Doing this in prep for Sept. 9 ride Pgh. to DC. Will follow up Monday.
Discussion started 08/18/2012 06:42 PM by lenny - 4 replies (last reply by Dana at 08/25/2012 11:10 AM)
lenny on 08/18/2012 06:42 PM
Going to Williamsport tomorrow and riding east to see if I can get on the Slackwater re build. Doing this in prep for Sept. 9 ride Pgh. to DC. Will follow up Monday.

 
Sloturtle from Zanesville Oh on 08/18/2012 08:38 PM
Us 3 guys are leaving Boston Pa on Sept 10th going to DC. we were going to try to get on the new trail at Slackwater also. We hear it about done. Be sure to post what you find

 
Jim on 08/23/2012 08:53 AM
The Big Slackwater project is not complete. It will not be complete until this Fall. You are creating a hazard going into an active work area. Please wait until it is finished!

 
can't wait any longer on 08/23/2012 10:20 AM
I say go for it. Contractors don't work on the weekend. This section is for the most part completed by the pictures posted on the web and the video. We are tired of waiting! This was supposed to be done last december.

 
Dana on 08/25/2012 11:10 AM
I am heading east from Pittsburgh to DC on the 30th. Any reports on the slackwater?? If I am going thru there on Labor Day can I use the path???


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Parking for C&O Section Hikers
 -  + I would like to hike the C&O Canal in sections either with another hiker with a car parked at our entrance and exit points or solo with my car at my exit point and a shuttle to my entrance point. Is ...
Discussion started 08/23/2012 09:53 AM by Auntie Coosa - 0 replies
Auntie Coosa from Murfreesboro on 08/23/2012 09:53 AM
I would like to hike the C&O Canal in sections either with another hiker with a car parked at our entrance and exit points or solo with my car at my exit point and a shuttle to my entrance point. Is there a list of SAFE [fee or free] places to park a car for a week or more near the C&O Canal?

Thank you, Coosa


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Does the c&o still have a lot of downed trees?
 -  + My cousin and I are doing the GAP and the C&O from Confluence to Harpers Ferry the week of august 13th. Has the C&O been cleaned up enough since that big storm hit DC and the coast recently?
Discussion started 08/08/2012 07:54 AM by James - 4 replies (last reply by Jim at 08/23/2012 09:00 AM)
James from Ithaca on 08/08/2012 07:54 AM
My cousin and I are doing the GAP and the C&O from Confluence to Harpers Ferry the week of august 13th. Has the C&O been cleaned up enough since that big storm hit DC and the coast recently?

 
JJB from Fairmont, WV on 08/08/2012 10:05 PM
Yes James, the trail was clear when we rode it two weeks ago. You will find that there are more sticks and small branches than usual. Every now and then we came across some larger branches that you will have to avoid. I'm sure over time these will slowly clear off.

 
James on 08/09/2012 07:47 AM
Awesome! So pumped for this trip next week thank you!

 
JJB from Fairmont, WV on 08/11/2012 05:27 PM
How long are you taking to do the trip? Is this your first time doing it?

 
Jim on 08/23/2012 09:00 AM
Each of us can help with the clean-up. If you see small or medium sized debris on the trail, kindly assist and move it off the trail. It will ony take a few minutes of your time. Take the initiative, show responsibility. You use the trail, so help to keep it maintained. Have a great time.


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Does the c&o still have a lot of downed trees?
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Big savage Tunnel
 -  + Does anyone know if it's necessary to have a headlight on your bike to go through Big savage Tunnel on the Allegheny Passage?
Discussion started 08/21/2012 08:36 PM by Gvalla - 1 reply (last reply by lenny at 08/22/2012 04:11 AM)
Gvalla from Irwin on 08/21/2012 08:36 PM
Does anyone know if it's necessary to have a headlight on your bike to go through Big savage Tunnel on the Allegheny Passage?

 
lenny on 08/22/2012 04:11 AM
It is always wise to have a light with you on a long ride in case of an emergency. But the Bid Savage is lighted and you can make it through without it.


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PARKING
 -  + We are attempting to walk the C&O, disabled. Can only do a few miles per day. Has anyone done this? Where did you park? Finding places
to enter the path has been more difficult than the hike. C...
Discussion started 08/20/2012 05:54 PM - 0 replies
Anonymous from Martinsburg, WV on 08/20/2012 05:54 PM
We are attempting to walk the C&O, disabled. Can only do a few miles per day. Has anyone done this? Where did you park? Finding places
to enter the path has been more difficult than the hike. Currently traveling West at Hancock.


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PARKING
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PGH to DC, mid Sept.
 -  + I’m planning on riding from PGH to DC & plan to camp. Is anyone riding this route during week of Sept 10th & want/need a riding buddy?
Discussion started 08/19/2012 09:55 PM by Chris - 0 replies
Chris from NJ on 08/19/2012 09:55 PM
I’m planning on riding from PGH to DC & plan to camp. Is anyone riding this route during week of Sept 10th & want/need a riding buddy?


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 -  + Trail is still closed heading east,must use detour. Hope it opens soon.
Discussion started 08/19/2012 05:36 PM by lenny - 0 replies
lenny on 08/19/2012 05:36 PM
Trail is still closed heading east,must use detour. Hope it opens soon.


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Trip planning
 -  + We are planning a 2 day trip starting from Confluence to Boston.Where would be a good place to camp out around Connelsville? Has anyone used a place they would recommend we plan on leaving Confluence ...
Discussion started 08/18/2012 11:08 PM by Sean S - 1 reply (last reply by Hondo at 08/19/2012 04:22 PM)
Sean S from Mckeesport on 08/18/2012 11:08 PM
We are planning a 2 day trip starting from Confluence to Boston.Where would be a good place to camp out around Connelsville? Has anyone used a place they would recommend we plan on leaving Confluence on 8/24.

 
Hondo on 08/19/2012 04:22 PM
As you are leaving Connellsville theres a bicycle campground to your left right off the trail. I didnt camp there so I cant report about it. Further down I camped at the Mile 92 campground in Adelaide again right beside the trail. It had all the amenities you need and the bicyclists dont camp in the same area the truck campers stay. From there it will leave you with about 38 miles to Boston.


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DC to Harpers
 -  + I'm planning to ride from DC to Harpers Ferry in mid-August in one day, camp in Harpers or Huckleberry Hill, and return to DC the next day.

I'm basically looking for any information others may...
Discussion started 08/15/2012 11:29 PM by Alex - 2 replies (last reply by Louis at 08/16/2012 09:50 PM)
Alex from Baltimore on 08/15/2012 11:29 PM
I'm planning to ride from DC to Harpers Ferry in mid-August in one day, camp in Harpers or Huckleberry Hill, and return to DC the next day.

I'm basically looking for any information others may have regarding trail conditions, or any other out of the ordinary things to expect.

Thanks!

 
lenny on 08/16/2012 04:08 AM
When you arrive at the Harpers Ferry Trailhead you will climb a circular stair to cross a bridge to get to the town of Harpers Ferry.

 
Louis from Baltimore on 08/16/2012 09:50 PM
It is a great time to ride, things will have dried up since this weeks rain. Remember to leave my food out.


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restuarant in Paw Paw
 -  + Just received an email account of a ride on the tow path. The writer eluded to stopping and having lunch at the new restuarant in PawPaw.
Discussion started 08/15/2012 04:30 AM by lenny - 0 replies
lenny on 08/15/2012 04:30 AM
Just received an email account of a ride on the tow path. The writer eluded to stopping and having lunch at the new restuarant in PawPaw.


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Getting started in Pittsburg
 -  + I'm taking Amtrak from DC to Pitt in September, which arrives at midnight. Suggestions about where to go/stay at midnight? Female traveling alone most likely. Also, trail actually starts in Homestead,...
Discussion started 08/09/2012 08:36 PM by Breakaway - 10 replies (last reply by lenny at 08/14/2012 04:32 AM)
Breakaway from Glen Gardner NJ on 08/09/2012 08:36 PM
I'm taking Amtrak from DC to Pitt in September, which arrives at midnight. Suggestions about where to go/stay at midnight? Female traveling alone most likely. Also, trail actually starts in Homestead, yeah? Have some confusion about that. Is there somewhere to stay there?

 
lenny on 08/10/2012 04:35 AM
You can ride from down town Pgh. Take Eliza Furnace Trail to Hot Metal Bridge, cross to Southside Trail, at intersection cross Hot Metal St.left and continue on trail to the end (1 or 2 miles ). Get on to rail bed and walk bike 1/4 mile to Sand Castle and continue threw to Homestead. I've done this several times this summer and is not dangerous or difficult. Also you wont be alone all of the time. As to hotels I sure you will find a place to stay if you make reservations now. I'm curious, what is your departure date? Wife and I leave Point Park 7am 9/9/12.You'd be welcome to join us for some direction if you like.

 
Breakaway on 08/10/2012 02:33 PM
Thanks for the explanation... but none of that is reasonable when arriving by Amtrak at midnight!! My trip does not begin till a week after yours...maybe I'll catch up to you, ha, ha.

 
lenny on 08/10/2012 05:12 PM
Why?? Hotels will hold a room til you get here, as long as it is paid for. Don't understand.

 
Breakaway on 08/10/2012 07:01 PM
It was the hotel/place to stay that I was looking for. Don't know anything about the area around the train station in Pitt, but train stations are not notorious for being in good areas.

 
Slot utter from Ohio on 08/10/2012 09:45 PM
3 guys from Oh starting the 10th. Be nice and clear the trail for us :)

 
Slot urge on 08/10/2012 09:47 PM
Correct trail name Sloturtle.. Sorry

 
lenny on 08/11/2012 02:58 AM
Station is on the Southside. A very nice area and many hotels. By the way right on the trail!

 
speedster on 08/13/2012 10:39 AM
If it were me, I wouldn't want to have to pay for a nights stay when I may not arrive at my room until after 1am (counting transit time from train station). Seems like paying for a full night and only getting minimal rest value out of it. I would sleep while aboard the train (should be a good 5-6 hr rest) to have myself rested and find something to do for 4-5 hrs until sun-up once into Pittsburgh. Call family or whatever let them know you're into town. Maybe find a 24 hr grocery store and pick up some snacks and water for your ride..then maybe head to an early breakfast place at say 5-6am.

Seems out there a bit to some I'm sure, but, I just wouldn't sleep properly and get much value for my money out of a hotel stay given the timing of your arrival and all the hustle and bustle and being keyed up that late at night.

To keep things reasonable, call an end to your ride day earlier than normal since you will be up and going so early that day..that's one option anyway.

 
lenny on 08/13/2012 04:02 PM
Train leaves DC about 4pm daily, arrives Pgh. a little after midnight. And is late at times.Not to many stores on the Southside only restaurants bars and hotels.The area is called Station Square, and the trail runs right by, only feet away. Pittsburgh is unique in that a major bike and ped. only trail runs on both sides of the Monongahala River.

 
lenny on 08/14/2012 04:32 AM
I spoke wrongly. The station at Station Square has been closed,all Pgh trains from DC are diverted to the PA. mainline and thus arrive at Union Station Downtown on Liberty Ave.Still lots of hotels and close to Point Park and the trail.


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 -  + try the town hill b&b in little orleans web site www.townhillbnb.com
Discussion started 08/06/2012 09:53 AM by bill - 1 reply (last reply by BA at 08/07/2012 04:59 PM)
bill from greensburg pa on 08/06/2012 09:53 AM
try the town hill b&b in little orleans web site www.townhillbnb.com

 
BA from OKC on 08/07/2012 04:59 PM
thank you, tried them but they are booked! looks like a great place though!

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