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Share your comments, questions, opinions, and advice on the C&O Canal Trail and/or Great Allegheny Passage.
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Fall in Ohiopyle
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Confluence Overnight Recommendations???
Anonymous on 06/20/2012 02:44 PM
Interested in any of your experiences with the B & Bs or motels in Confluence.

What are you recommendations??

Thanks for any help.

lenny on 06/20/2012 04:08 PM
I have used Confluence House B&B. It was great. But I usually ride to Ohiopyle on my rides, and there are more choices there.

Anonymous on 06/20/2012 05:56 PM
Appreciate the advice on Ohiopyle. That actually works better mileage-wise than Confluence....However...When I search this website, I find fewer hotel/motel/lodging options in Ohiopyle than I do in Confluence. I'll keep looking...I'm obviously confused. Thanks again.

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/20/2012 08:22 PM
On our first DC to Pitt trip and also on the trip we are doing this July, my wife and I stayed at the Yough Plaza Motel. This was nothing fancy. It was clean and they allowed us to bring our bikes into the room. We stayed on the top floor and the end room, helped cut down on noise. There may be nicer places at Ohiopyle but really all we wanted was a place to safely store our bikes and gear, take a shower and sleep. We found a place to eat breakfast and were good to go.

You could try bbbiking.com. Sites like it and this site were a great help to us planning our two trips.

Good luck!

lenny on 06/20/2012 08:42 PM
I use the Yough Plaza motel, on the contrary I think it is a really god trail motel. I will be staying there this Sat night . I've posted earlier that I'm doing a trainer.

lenny on 06/20/2012 08:44 PM
I almost forgot there web sight sucks,but I'm computer challenged.

Anonymous on 06/20/2012 10:49 PM
This information is very helpful. Thank you all.

Bike it all the time from Pittsburgh on 06/22/2012 01:35 PM
For the extra 18 miles I prefer to stay at the Hostel in Rockwood. Right off the path. Friendly atmosphere and good food. Cost is about $22 a person for non private room. Bike storage in the basement with good water hose for cleaning. Check out their web site. Google Rockwood PA hostel.

Jean from Bowling Green, Ohio on 06/24/2012 09:04 AM
Just returned and stayed in Confluence - great town and fantastic bike shop!

Lodging: Parker House, Confluence House B & B,
Hanna House, Paddlers Lane Retreat, House at Confluence.

All have websites. We stayed at Parker House Guest House (no breakfast, but kitchen available). Little pricy, but beautiful accommodation!

Confluence Cyclery could also give you names of the ones I didn't list.

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Lost and Found - Sportline HR Monitor
Jean from Bowling Green, Ohio on 06/24/2012 08:51 AM
FOUND: Sportline Heart Rate Monitor on the GAP between W. Newton and Boston on Thursday, June 21. Provide details to claim.

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Hondo from West Virginia on 06/17/2012 07:41 AM
Does anyone know if you are allowed to leave your vehicle for several days at the Boston Pa.starting point for the GAP.

lenny on 06/17/2012 07:42 AM
Sure, why not?

Jean from Bowling Green, Ohio on 06/24/2012 08:44 AM
Just returned from the GAP. Left one car at the Trail Inn and Cafe in Frostburg and another at Yough Shore Inn, Boston ($10/day or $10 if you book a room and stay a night).

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Western End???
Anonymous on 06/20/2012 02:45 PM
Planning a trip from DC west for later in the summer. I am not from the area. I can't figure out where the GAP actually ends. Need to make some plans for where to be picked up. Figure out how far/close to the airport I am going to end up, etc.

Thanks for any help.

One final question...am I understanding correctly that the GAP is paved from Cumberland west?

Thanks again!

lenny on 06/20/2012 04:04 PM
GAP ends at the Waterfront in Homestead right now.But I have made it to the Southside trail threw Sandcastle and on to Point State Park. But the Airport is still a taxi ride away. Check the maps and mileage charts on this and the Great Allegheny web sites it will clarify a lot for you.

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/20/2012 04:42 PM
Also, the GAP is not paved. There are some spots that are paved. Usually around a town. The GAP itself is a wonderful trail, smooth and well maintained.

Anonymous on 06/20/2012 10:50 PM
Again. Very helpful. Will plan to end at Homestead and make travel arrangements from there. Thank you all!

Done it many times over from Pittsburgh on 06/22/2012 01:31 PM
You can now technically ride direct to the airport using the Montour trail instead of travelling into town. The Montour connects via couple share the road lanes in Mkeesport. I know its not the entire GAP but no need to take a taxi.

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lenny on 06/18/2012 07:30 PM
Anything new on the Big Slackwater Restoration? No new posts on The Canal Trust site since May 7.

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Your worst tour experience..
speedster on 06/13/2012 07:28 PM
OK folks, wanting to bring a little levity to the board for a couple days maybe..

Disclaimer: most riders will find hard luck stories while out on tour somewhat comical (depending on the circumstances of course), most of us have been there at some point..so suck it up and spill the awful details.

Please chime in with tours you've went on where Murphy's Law totally took over.

Did the weather go from bad to worse? Lightning, tornado or worse.

Did you lose you ID or wallet while riding, not to realize it until much later in the day another 60 miles down the road somewhere..

Did your bike give you huge headaches??

Did you lose your route map while in an unfamiliar area??

Did you get to a point where you just had to cut your losses, abandon ship and discontinue your tour??

lenny on 06/13/2012 08:29 PM
OK speed I'll bite. My story isn't really that bad. I ride lot over 1,500/m a season. One of the rides is always a summer run Pgh. to DC. I am notorious for getting lots of flats. I run my tires up to the limit, and ride them hard .Needless to say my ride partners rag the daylights out of me about all the flats. I average one flat per day on The Ride. And 1 flat per week in season. Tires.com loves me.

Ray on 06/14/2012 07:57 AM
My worst experience happened before my rear end ever even hit the saddle. I loaded my bike onto my car's rear-mount bike rack and headed off to the trail. When I reached the trail, I found a smoldering mass of melted rubber at the bottom of the rear wheel - the tire had been too close to the car exhaust and literally melted. Luckily there was an open bike shop where they chiseled the melted rubber off of the rim and set me up with a new tire. All was good after that!

speedster on 06/14/2012 09:02 AM
Not bad so far..thanks guys.

Along the lines of Ray's post, has anyone used a rear mounted rack system on their car and had their bike fall off while in transit?? Did a strap snap or work its way loose? Did the whole rack collapse off the car? That would be pretty bad karma and possibly not something anyone would want to own up to, but who knows..

Also, in a similar vein, were you using a rear rack system for your bike and in transit to your trail ride got rear-ended and the bike or bikes mounted there were destroyed??

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/16/2012 05:38 PM
I don't really have any hard luck stories, I have been pretty lucky so far....

Did have one interesting incident at Ohiopyle a couple of years back. My kids and some friends went rafting down the Yough. My wife and I rode from Ohiopyle to Confluence and back. We decided to get a bite to eat at the Ohiopyle House Cafe, out on the deck. I had the bikes on the rack and had moved the van up near the visitors center, in the big gravel parking lot. There is only a half dozen cares or so as it was early evening and most people were gone. So we are eating when an old beat up car pulls into the parking lot with two 20 somethings. They get out and stand around their car and casually look at the cars in the lot. After a short time they get in their car and leave. 15 - 20 minutes later they pull back in right next to our van. They hop out of their car and go right for our bikes, a Gary Fisher and a Specialized. They were strapped in the rack and bungee corded together. They started to yank on the bikes when I jumped up and ran to the railing and yelled at them. This got their attention but really startled the other people eating. It took the other folks a second or two to realize what was going on. The two 20 somethings were trying to figure out where to voice was coming from. Right after I yelled at them, another,much larger gentleman got up, stood beside me and started yelling at them too. The boys finally figured out where the voices were coming from and stared at us for a moment or two and hopped back in their beater and tore out of there.

I really don't know what they were thinking. They couldn't have taken the bike(s) in their car. I guess they could have tried to ride it somewhere but they didn't look like they would have made it too far. Maybe it was just something to do. When we finished eating and went back to the van, you could see their handprints on the rims.

I was pretty upset at the time but just laugh know when I think o

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/16/2012 05:47 PM
Lost the last sentence. Should read -
I was pretty upset at the time but just laugh now when I think about the look on their faces when they realized there was a small crowd of diners watching them try to steal our bikes.

And it was cars, not cares, in the parking lot.

Hondo from West Virginia on 06/17/2012 07:22 AM
OK, mine happened this year. I started off in Boston Pa. on the GAP and was doing fine until Rockwood Pa.It started raining hard that night and ended up being 2 inches of rain. I was bragging how I had sprayed the tent with silicone so it shouldnt leak. Leaked awful! Tent was full of rain the next morning. I manged to get everything dried out but because of the weather being only 60 with rain all day in the forecast I stayed at camp in Rockwood. The next day I left with my destination being Cumberland. A mile into the ride I noticed my chain jumping a bit. I thought the derailer might need some adjustment so I guessed I could make it to Cumberland then get it tuned up there. Well, 5 miles into the ride the chain breaks. No extra chain,tools. nothing. So I push the bike back to Rockwood 5 miles. The funny part is I had told people along the trail that as long as I didnt break a spoke or chain I would be fine. Turns out I got it fixed quick at the bike shop along the trail and was back on the road the next day.Not fun when its actually happeninig but when its over it makes for a good story. I was lucky enough to film the whole thing, my expressions, ( I edited the cuss words) all of it. I did make it to Harpers Ferry and would do it all again tomorrow.

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lenny on 06/13/2012 08:35 PM
Doing a trainer next Sat. and Sun. Pitt. to Ohiopyle and back.76 miles each way. My wife is doing The Ride with me this year and wanted to see how 2 long days felt. She has already done 3 60+days in the past, but isn't real confident in her ability. She will be fine . I'll report.

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/14/2012 07:55 AM
It looks like you are going to have some great weather for your ride. Can I ask what speed will you average on your trip or how long do you think it will take you to do the 76 miles? Good luck to you and your wife!

lenny on 06/16/2012 02:54 PM
just over 6 hrs. saddle time , but less going back to Pgh.

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/16/2012 05:15 PM
Thanks Lenny. Right around 12mph is what my wife and I average on our normal trail rides. A little faster on paved trails and a little slower on wet, unpaved trails. I think on the C&O we were around 8mph in some spots.

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lenny on 06/16/2012 02:57 PM
his site wouldnt connect for me the last couple days, but today it opened. My computer or the site???

Ray (webmaster) on 06/16/2012 03:18 PM
I apologize, the database on the web server ran out of space. I cleaned it up a few hours ago, and all is back to normal now. Sorry about that. Thanks for coming back!

Happy trails!

speedster on 06/16/2012 04:14 PM
I noticed that yesterday too.

Figured it was a 'site maintainence' thing..

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Saddle sore and seat area pain..
speedster on 05/07/2012 10:24 PM
Hoping to get a few people to chime in about saddle sore and nerve pain in the crotch area.

Anyone here dealing with this? Anyone found any resolution they wish to share?

I have been doing some icing recently and applying baby powder to keep the skin dry and reduce friction prior to heading out on the limited riding schedule I've opted to go with for now.

I will possibly be looking into a more comfort-oriented seat, although the one I have had been working fine for most of the 2 yrs I've been using it. Do seats lose cushioning ability with time and wear?? Anything anyone wants to add in is appreciated..

lenny on 05/08/2012 04:39 AM
Seat. do wear out, but good ones last longer.High quality seats are longer live and more comfortable.What is you gender, seats and liner are gender specific. How about a chamious cream it helps.A nd the more you ride the more desensitized the area becomes.

speedster on 05/08/2012 11:13 AM
I'm male and the seat is ergonomically designed for males. It has a cut-out/recess down the center where the major nerves run under the surface of the crotch area.

It seems possible the seat cushioning material has packed-down somewhat, over time and with usage, allowing for less of a cushioning effect and more likelihood of the cushioning material compressing enough to be as though you are sitting directly against the solid frame of the seat.

lenny on 05/08/2012 07:17 PM
try readjusting your seat. make saure your back and sitting on the sit bones, it may help. I personally like Brooks Saddles.

speedster on 05/08/2012 10:27 PM
Yes, I have adjusted the angle of the nose of the seat down slightly, to some small improvement.

I will see if I can find that seat maker you mentioned. Thanks.

lenny on 05/09/2012 07:17 PM
check nashbar.com for Brooks Saddles

Randy on 05/11/2012 02:15 PM
Yes seats will wear out over time, especially the all Gel seats. I have had a lot of success with Avenir's "Comfort Saddle" seat on my Mountain Bike. The Comfort Saddle has Springs as well as Gel. I can go 50 miles and don't have any issues at all. It is a very comfortable seat! Avenir did a great job with the overall design.

Mr Purple Paul on 05/18/2012 06:58 PM
on my first long ride in a while I experienced numbness and the sensation of vibration for a few days after the ride. . however starting last year I've invested in better quality bike shorts and an anti-friction powder called "Anti Monkey Butt",,between that and a new seat I've felt pretty good on longer trips...

I guess we'll find out in August when I do 88 miles (my longest trip yet)...

Jim on 06/01/2012 02:59 PM
Comfort seats tend to cause more pain on long bike trips so I would look at a more conventional touring saddle. The biggest thing is to spend the time adjusting the riding position to find your sweet spot. Even something like adjusting the seat a 1/2 inch forward or backward can make a big difference.

Randy on 06/13/2012 09:23 AM
I highly recommend from "personal experience" Avenir's: "Passage Comfort Saddle". Approx. price: $28 to $30. I ride between 30 to 50 miles on my bike outings and have no issues. Great design.

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lenny on 06/11/2012 07:30 PM
How did the milage grid on this site get West Newton so out of place. Some, unfamiliar with the trail may get screwed up.

Ray (webmaster) on 06/12/2012 05:17 AM
Lenny, thank you for pointing that out. Looks like a number was off when the mileage grid got calculated. I have fixed it.
Happy trails!

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Ohiopyle to Morgantown, WV
ytri from maryland on 06/11/2012 08:05 AM
Hello. I'm trying to find low traffic cycling route between Morgantown, WV and Ohiopyle (or any other intersection with the GAP/C&O).

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/11/2012 08:17 AM
If no one else comments, I can check with a bike store in Morgantown, (Wamsley Cycles),and see if they have any suggestions. Where at in Morgantown would you like to start at?

speedster on 06/11/2012 08:28 PM
Well, I'm a bit confused..

Your post title is Ohiopyle to Morgantown and the first respondent replied on the assumption you would be starting from Morgantown, I think..

Anyway, I'll reply as per the title of the topic and start in Ohiopyle. This is just from consulting google maps. You can use 381 south out of Ohiopyle. I believe this shouldn't be too heavily travelled a road to bike on, as this is a pretty rural area.

From there, a right onto US 40 (westbound). Not sure how traffic is or what type of shoulder area/bike lanes there are here..

Then you can turn left onto either Mountain Rd or Fairchance Rd and continue thru a couple junctions/turns along the way staying on a general Southwesterly track.

This takes you into Point Marion where you can pick up the Monongahela River Trail North, which takes you, minus any car traffic, the rest of the way to Morgantown.

Total trip time should be around about 5 hrs..

Consult further with google maps to determine your own actual route and street views see what these roads look like in photo and to determine your comfort with the shoulder space available on any of the above mentioned roads of travel.

JJB from Fairmont, WV on 06/11/2012 09:43 PM
You are right speedster. When I read "between Morgantown, WV and Ohiopyle" I assumed from Morgantown to Ohiopyle. If you are coming off the trail at Ohiopyle or Confluence, I believe it is a pretty good grade coming out of those.

speedster on 06/11/2012 10:13 PM
Agreed. The grade on those roads coming south out of Ohiopyle is basically a series of hilly 'up-and-downs'. This route will not be any type of relatively smooth rail-trail type grades. More of an endurance-type trek.

On closer examination, I believe the quoted travel time to be optimistic at 5 hrs, due to all the climbing involved, where you'll be down to barely better than walking speeds on some of the hills.

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airport to the GAP
Dennis from Florida on 06/09/2012 08:05 PM
Need information regarding biking from the airport to the GAP trail. Obvious solution from the map and articles I read is the airport connector trail to the Montour trail and taking the Montour to Clairton/Mckeesport. Is that the best option? Are there still gaps at the end of the montour trail?

lenny on 06/09/2012 08:40 PM
Thats it . There are a lot of things the powers that be talk about and also act as if they have a complete trail,that is not the case. I have been riding this area for 5 years and every year its going to be completed.Good luck finding your way. I wish you a great ride.

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Montour trail to the GAP
Dennis from Fort Myers, Florida on 06/07/2012 05:23 PM
Using airport connector to access the Montour trail and riding it to the Gap trail. Does Montour directly connect to Gap or is there a connecting route I should be aware of?

lenny on 06/07/2012 07:37 PM
Google Great Allegheny Passage, click on maps. Then click on map segment 1. You will find that there is no direct connect near the city . I believe you may have to go out 20 or so miles .Goodluck

Dennis on 06/09/2012 07:59 PM
I realize that it is about 30 miles to the gap on the Montour trail. I have reviewed the map you mentioned and am concerned by the apparent nonexistence of the Montour trail as it approaches Clairton, Pa. Is it difficult to traverse get to Clairton and thereafter get to Mckeesport? How would you suggest I get to the Gap from the airport?

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Hillside Motel in Brunswick
Lisa the old manger from n/a on 06/08/2012 12:50 AM
I think every body knows that I got that motel up & running. Before I took over the rooms were very dirty & I don't think they ever vacuum or shampoo the carpets. Four of the rooms were infested with bed bugs. I took care all the issues that were there before I started. I feel that I was a major asset to this motel. After I got this motel up to a 4.5 star Motel the owner Jt. Thakker showed up at the faculty @1:30am and told me to leave his property. I think think that this Motel was alot nicer after I took over but every one knows how it was before I became the manger. I miss all my regular guest that I became very close to. I think the owner made a huge mistake now it's back to the dump that it was before I started. It sad cause this Motel is in a great location for vacation for families.

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lenny on 06/06/2012 08:36 PM
Megan from England, did you do the ride in March? Tell us about it.

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Am Trak station to beginning of Gap Trail
Dennis from Ft. Myers, Fl on 06/03/2012 04:50 PM
Arriving in Pitts. by train. What is the best way to get to the beginning of the GAP trail? Can I bike it or should I arrange some kind of shuttle?

lenny on 06/03/2012 07:20 PM
You can ride from the station. go up Penn or Liberty Ave. towards town find the Boulevard of the Allies, head east to Grant St., Cross Grant and go down the side walk. You will come upon a small plaza, turn left. You are on the Great Allegheny Passage. How far are you going? Where are you from. How do you plan to get through Baldwin to Sandcastle. Read my entry from today.

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