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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
Fall in Ohiopyle, PA on the GAP
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Paved sections of trail
New to C&O Trail and GAP from Winchester, VA on 07/17/2011 07:27 AM
Have a five year old and we are trying to take in sections of the trail that are paved for his training wheels. Have enjoyed the paved Hancock bike path tremendously. Are any other areas set up the same? Thanks for your help.

vabiker23518 from Williamsburg, VA on 07/18/2011 12:11 PM
To my knowledge, on the C&O there is some paving very close in to DC, and the WM around Hancock. The GAP is pretty nice but only short stretches are paved.

Randy from Elizabethtown on 07/20/2011 01:17 PM
The paved Western Maryland Rail Trail runs from Big Pool (Fort Frederick) MD to Pearre (23 miles long).
You mentioned Hancock, MD. That would be about the mid-point of the trail. At various points you can jump off and go on the C&O Canal for a while if you want to take in some river views. The only other paved areas would be down around DC that I know of. Have fun!

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Randy from Elizabethtown on 07/20/2011 01:08 PM
The Admin needs to update the Mileage Chart information. There is ample PARKING available on the Maryland side at the PAW PAW Tunnel. You can fit approx. 30 vehicles there. The Tunnel itself is within walking distance of the Parking area. There is also water and camping available.

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Sandcastle to DC
Lenny on 07/11/2011 07:55 PM
Rode 5 days 7/5-7/9,32hrs29min/338.3miles. Trails in very good shape, except for Friday, rained last 30 miles to Harpers Ferry. Trail was also muddy Whites Ferry to Seneca on Sat. We rode 60 to 74 miles per day.Had a great time. Lots of improvements on C&O, should be excellent next year along with the connection to Pgh.

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lenny on 07/04/2011 06:23 AM
Leaving tomorrow 7-5-11 from sand castle for a 5 day ride to DC, with 5 friends. This will be our 2nd ride. Hope to leave from the Point next year uninterupted

vabiker23518 from Williamsburg, VA on 07/07/2011 08:19 AM
We're looking forward to hearing how the first leg of your trip, from Sand Castle to McKeesport works out. We've not been there since all the new bridges have been emplaced in/around Pittsburgh. Thanks,Wayne

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C & O bicycle and bunkhouse
John from DC on 07/04/2011 12:01 AM
This is a great place to stay in Hancock at mile 125. The owner is very friendly as is the bunkhouse caretaker. I packed light (no tent) and it was a pleasure to not get soaked. 10 bucks gets you a shower, a Jose to wash the muck off your back and a hard bed.

Anonymous on 07/04/2011 12:02 AM
That should read hose. Typing on phone. Also the sleepei g accommodations are screened in.

vabiker23518 from Williamsburg, VA on 07/05/2011 01:16 PM
We stayed there two nights in June. Agree with everything you said, but was a little disappointed in the cleanliness of the bunkhouse. Don't think its been swept this year!

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Great Trip
smitty from virginia beach on 07/02/2011 05:00 AM
Just finished my ride along GAP and C&O (26-29 June). An absolute great ride. Averaged 75 miles each day on MTB w/ 20lb beam rack/bag. Would like to hear from those who have ridden it through with no to one overnight.

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great bike support
Colorado Riders from Fruita, CO on 06/29/2011 09:38 PM
Earlier this month we had our bikes and trailers shipped to the West Newton Bike Shop so that we could ride from there to DC. The folks at the shop were great! We recommend them and the B&B Bright Morning. Great folks that all went an extra step to help us have a great ride to DC. Thanks to all!

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Old marine from Erie, PA on 06/26/2011 05:18 AM
My wife and I have never been to Ohiopyle, we would like to stay there for a few days and ride the GAP. One day ride North out and back and the next Day South out and back. Any recommendations for a place to stay?

Colorado Riders from Fruita, CO on 06/26/2011 05:04 PM
We just got back from riding the GAP-C&O canal trails and had a great time. We camped at Ohiopyle State Park and it was wonderful (minus the too friendly racoons). Nice spots and shower house close-by. The trail is a short but steep quarter mile from the park. It is definitely a push you bike up, but if you're looking for good camping, OSP can't be beat. Enjoy the trail. We wish we were riding it again soon!

lenny on 06/26/2011 08:45 PM
Yough Plaza Motel, 1-800-992-7238. By the way the trail runs east and west. and the trail is in the park, which is from Connellsville to almost Confluence

JULIA A WRIGHT on 06/28/2011 11:50 AM
We were there recently, intended to camp but the weather was really bad so we rented a Yurt at the State park. It was great , like half- camping!-

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lenny on 06/24/2011 09:25 PM
Doe's any have a report on the condition of the towpath as of this week?

vabiker23518 from Williamsburg, VA on 06/28/2011 08:37 AM
We biked from Hancock to Paw Paw and the trail was in great shape. Some wet spots here and there, but overall very good.

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Side trip to Falling Water?
Jeanie from Rifle, CO on 05/23/2011 11:08 AM
Any great ideas for traveling the 4 miles to reach Falling Water? I have been told Highway 381 is not safe to bike on and we haven't found any shuttle service?

Colorado Riders from Fruita, CO on 05/23/2011 11:42 AM
Hey, we're from Fruita and will be riding the trail in June. We've made arrangements for a shuttle through the raft company Wilderness Voyagers--very reasonable. It allowed us to make reservations at FW and not worry about the ride on the road. When will you be riding?

Kate from Indpls, IN on 06/22/2011 01:55 PM
Could you share the shuttle service number? We will be doing a side trip too and may want to grab a shuttle.

julia on 06/23/2011 10:07 AM
We were there last week and chose not to risk life and limb on our bikes, we got a shuttle ride from the Wilderness Voyagers people, on the north side of the river.They will drop you right there and you call them when you want to come back - it cost us $25, well worth not dying for!

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Three Questions...
Anonymous on 06/19/2011 05:11 AM
After reviewing the site and in planning a trip, I still have 3 questions.

1. Pittsburgh to DC or DC to Pittsburgh? Which is the best option? Are there prevailing winds to be considered?

2. Flat bar 29er with 1 1/2 - 2 inch tires or drop bar cyclocross bike with 32-35mm tires?

3. How many miles a day is reasonable for a person who rides 5000 miles a year on the roads at 14-17 mph? (For comparison purposes, if helpful, ride the KATY in Missouri fairly often 50-75 a day is reasonable there....is that reasonable here?)

Any insights for those of you with experience on this trail will be helpful.

Thanks so much!!

lenny on 06/21/2011 04:47 AM
I like Pgh. to DC. Its easier for me I dont have your skills.TheX bike with 35's is a good choice.Yes, I did 60+/day last year and planning to do the same this year

lenny on 06/22/2011 04:34 AM
When are you going? We leave July 5 from Homestead.

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Judy Snyder from Elizabeth, PA on 06/18/2011 03:05 PM
My son and his 3 children (ages 5, 7, 8) are in the process of riding to DC. They left the Northside of Pittsburgh last Saturday and will arrive in DC sometime on Tuesday. I am trying to find t-shirts for each of them. Something that includes the C&O Canal Trail & Great Allegheny Passage or "I rode the trail from Pittsburgh to Washington DC" with the miles included. I cannot find any t-shirts for children. Does some one know where I can find t-shirts for children? Thank you. This has been such an accomplishment for them.

Paul A on 06/20/2011 09:25 PM
While the shirts wouldn't be ready for their finish you might try making custom Tee shirts at Cafepress.com You upload whatever you want on the shirt and they make it and then ship the shirts to you. I've used their service for a couple different custom Tee shirts and was happy with the results. That way you can have each person's name on their shirt as well as include dates of start and finish as well as milege and maybe a picture of the trail map.

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Pittsburgh-McKeesport Biking Problems
Anonymous on 05/04/2011 06:16 PM
Is the bike trip from Pittsburgh to McKeesport manageable or should it be avoided?

lenny on 05/05/2011 08:40 PM
Tough to do, must ride on a very busy road. But will be a good connection to the Waterfront in June

vabiker23518 from Williamsburg, VA on 05/18/2011 02:23 PM
We did it once, but it was a early Sunday morning departure, so traffic was minimal. Believe the road is #837 and goes by Kennywood Park. It is bad. No shoulders, short sight lines at times, and some folks are not bike friendly. Recommend waiting for the new bike paths that are supposed to open by 11-11-11

Colette from Pittsburgh on 06/07/2011 02:32 PM
On June 17, 2011, a new section of trail opens between Homestead and Mckeesport. Homestead is about ?5miles from downtown Pittsburgh.

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Shuttle from DC to Cumberland
Rodney from Orlando Florida on 05/25/2011 09:51 PM
Thanks in advance for your help. Any suggestions for a shuttle to Cumberland? I want to leave my vehicle in DC area after driving up from Florida and get a shuttle to Cumberland. Rodney

Paul A on 05/28/2011 04:13 PM
I'm going to recommend Cumberland Trail Connection. You'll find them listed in the Towns and Services section of this web site.

Pmikey from Slanesville WV on 06/05/2011 04:30 PM
YOu can take an Amtrak train from Union Station in DC to Cumberland Md. The train station is about 3 blocks from where the Great Allegeny Passage and the C&O canal meet. This is also where Cumberland Trail Connections is located too. But, you cannot take bike(s) on the train. But, you can rent a nice bike for $25 per day at Cumberland Trail Connections. Or you can ship your bike to them and they will have it ready to go when you get there. They are really nice people too. You can rent a car in DC and drop it oof in Cumberland. Rental drop off is about two blocks from the C&O canal. It is about a 3 hour drive from DC to Cumberland. I'm local to the area so if you need any addtional info post your email address and I will get back to you ASAP.


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Billy Goat Trail in Potomac
Ray (webmaster) on 03/16/2011 05:59 AM
Billy Goat Trail Section "A" is closed due to high water and flooding. Sections "B", and "C" are open. Section "A" will remain closed until further notice.

Tig on 06/04/2011 11:05 AM
Is it still closed?

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start options suggestions
mc on 05/23/2011 05:54 PM
Looking for suggestions: Looking at starting in McKeesport and riding to DC. Must return to Pittsburgh via Amtrak to retrieve automobile. Train arrives around midnight. Should I cab it to McKeesport at this hour and get a hotel, or get a hotel in Pittsburgh only to catch the bus or taxi the following morning to McKeesport? I am also open to suggestions as to a different course of action.

Colette from Pittsburgh on 06/02/2011 12:53 PM
Amtrak is in downtown Pittsburgh. Suggest you drive to a hotel near McKeesport (I don't think there are any in that town.). Suggest you look in Irwin, Monroeville, or Pittsburgh for hotel. Then drive to McKeesport, park your car in the parking garage, bike to DC. Come back to Pgh via Amtrak, stay at hotel in Pgh, and shuttle to your car parked in McKeesport. Not easy! If you postpone trip til 2012, you would be able to bike into Pgh rather than stop in McKeesport.

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Husky Haven Campground & Guest House in Rockwood
SwollenKnee from Collingswood, NJ on 05/16/2011 02:04 PM
Campsite is primitive, trailside, and bath house is 1 mile away in town. Bath house is great, though, and can get cell service with repeater by office door. Free firewood.

vabiker23518 from Williamsburg, VA on 05/17/2011 09:24 AM
We've stayed there. Its very clean and right off the trail. Getting to/from the bath house is no fun, and the trains are LOUD and Continuous...bring ear plugs!

Marc1059 from Cincinnati on 05/31/2011 01:47 PM
I made the Husky Haven my base camp last fall for out and back rides. Yes, the trains travel on a track located a couple hundred yards from the campground across the river. There is a road crossing there, so they sound the horn. There's a pizza parlor and bar/cafe within easy riding distance in the town of Rockwood. There's also a bicycle shop a few hundred yards west of the campground along the trail.

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SwollenKnee from Collingswood, NJ on 05/16/2011 01:33 PM
A quaint, friendly college town with plenty of restaurants. Well worth the shlep up the switchback and hill. You may be able to find a shortcut through the campus to avoid the top of the hill, which is not biker friendly.

Paul A on 05/26/2011 09:49 PM
If instead of turning left and going down to the main street, you turn right, it isn't far to a Food Lion super market which was a good place to resupply on my hike.

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Cumberland Trail Connection in Cumberland
SwollenKnee from Collingswood, NJ on 05/16/2011 01:43 PM
Great shop with friendly staff and brew supplies upstairs. WiFi, restaurant around the corner - good place to stop halfway through.

Paul A on 05/26/2011 09:46 PM
I'll second that!
A bunch of great people helping others along the trail.

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Concerned Mom from Va on 05/19/2011 11:20 AM
With all the rain lately how is the trail looking for passage? My husband and son plan on doing this from Cumberland to Georgetown over the Memorial Day weekend.

Charlie from Laurel, MD on 05/23/2011 02:50 PM
I rode from Georgetown to Seneca Aqueduct and back on Saturday. Other than a couple of small puddles and minor muddy area, everything was clear.

Greg from Alexandria, VA on 05/26/2011 04:36 PM
I just did the towpath from DC to Cumberland and back. I'm afraid you're in for some rough trail conditions. The stretches between high-activity areas we're pretty bad when I went through...mud with deep ruts and puddles which really slowed me to a crawl. With today's round of severe weather, which looks to be going straight thru the Cumberland and Hancock areas, can't be good for the trail.

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Boston or West Mifflin to DC
Lenny on 05/24/2011 09:08 PM
Trip planned with several friends, July 5-9. If interested comment on this forum and I will get in touch. We have done this before

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Dave from hollidaysburg pa on 05/19/2011 12:55 PM
Right next to the Clarion Inn in Shepardstown is a car wash where you can clean your bikwe as well as your self especially when I did it (the C & O canal from Cumberland to Washington) in the height of the summer when it was 80-90 degrees.

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shuttle from Pittsburg to Mckeesport
pme from oviedo,fl on 08/16/2010 06:42 AM
I am writing to find out the best way to get from the Amtrak station in Pittsburg to McKeesport to start the trail. We are plannin on biking from McKeesport to Washington DC in June. I have been looking it up yet wanted to see if I could get advice from someone who has actually done it. I have read that biking from Pittsburg to McKeesport is not possible until 11-11-11. Any help in this would be greatly appreciated.

Larry from North Huntingdon, Pa on 09/02/2010 01:37 PM
The Port Athority Transet Bus can transport you & bike, other shuttles on AGP website, Do your home work & make arangements...DON'T RIDE IT!! Please e/mail me for sugestions. Bad areas, no shoulder, high traffic voulme

pme from oviedo on 09/11/2010 06:01 AM
Thank you for your help. I will look into the shuttles on the website. With four of us biking (two teenagers) a shuttle van may be eaiser than the bus. I will start doing my homework.

Paul Mulvey from Easton on 09/12/2010 07:27 AM
I, too, am arriving by train in downtown PIttsburgh. I'm going to get a taxi and head out to a hotel on the outskirts of town. I'm shipping my bike ahead via UPS.

cathy from farmington, nm on 10/31/2010 09:30 PM
Thanks for the info. We are doing DC to Pittsburgh September 2011 and will get a shuttle from McKeesport to Pittsburgh.

keith from orrville, oh on 12/27/2010 08:17 PM
Don't rely on the 11/11/11 date for completion. There have been predictions/hopes that did not materialize. I am expecting it all to be done EXCEPT the several miles at the waterpark. There is a scrap yard beside the active railroad, followed by a waterpark that also covers the land from the river to the active railroad, that is yet to be resolved.

Jeff from McKeesport on 01/17/2011 12:10 AM
start ur trip in Boston PA! Best spot to kick ur trip off...trust me!

BTW, Pittsburgh......ends with an h

dan from austin tx on 02/28/2011 11:03 AM
Why start from Boston? Was thinking we'd co from top of Montour trail to DC.

C Donohue from Phoenix AZ on 05/17/2011 08:35 PM
We are biking from DC to McKeesport and have confirmed two 24 hr. cab companies who will transport our two bikes at appx 2:30am to be able to catch the appx 4:30am Pittsburg AMTRAK to DC. This way we sleep on the AMTRAK and arrive in DC in the daytime. Has anyone had a bad experience with the cab company not showing up? Costs about $35 total. We are to confirm 24hrs prior.

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Great Falls Overlook in Potomac
SwollenKnee from Collingswood, NJ on 05/16/2011 02:25 PM
Awesome! Spectacular falls - a must stop along the way.

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Rivers Edge Family Campground in Connellsville
SwollenKnee from Collingswood, NJ on 05/16/2011 02:21 PM
If coming from Pittsburgh, you can get food delivered here from Connellsville and avoid an 8 mile round trip back. Not much of a site for trail goers - primarily an RV park - but convenient. Ice cream shop, nice bath house, laundry. Trains are noisy, though.

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School House Kitchen in Oldtown
SwollenKnee from Collingswood, NJ on 05/16/2011 02:00 PM
Good food, prices, and service, with a big side order of country hospitality. Not far off the trail for a taste of local flavor. Say `Hi!' to Katinka for us.

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Adventure Sports in Frostburg
SwollenKnee from Collingswood, NJ on 05/16/2011 01:36 PM
Strangely, this was not open on a Tuesday afternoon recently. Phone number is no longer in service, either.

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Poole's General Store in Seneca
Paul A on 05/11/2011 12:14 AM
I recently finished an end to end hike of the Canal. I was told by a local who lived in the area that Poole's General Store is closed for good. If you're planning to stop there you might want to try calling first.

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Key Bridge, Washington DC
dan on 05/02/2011 07:39 PM
We'll be staying in Arlington near the Custis Trail. Is it possible to bike the Custis to the Key Bridge, cross the bridge and pick up the C&O Trail on the other side?

Greg from Alexandria, VA on 05/05/2011 01:23 PM
Yes, I do it all the time. Pick up Key Bridge from VA side. Use dedicated walk/bike pavement on right side of bridge heading into G'town. As soon as you cross over, turn right into Francis Scott Key park...you can walk bike down some stairs and a small bridge that crosses canal onto tow path. Or, you can ride a short distance down Wisconsin Ave. after crossing bridge, turn right onto one of the numbered cross streets, then mike a right turn at the end and follow the road that runs underneath the Whitehurst Freeway. That will eventually take you to the head of the Capital Crescent bike trail (paved) which runs parallel to the canal. You can switch over to the tow path at Fletcher's Boat House.

Anonymous on 05/08/2011 08:40 AM
thanks, that's very helpful

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C&O Canal Trust Previews Lockhouse 28
Ray (webmaster) on 05/06/2011 10:30 AM
Hagerstown, Md. - The C&O Canal Trust, in partnership with the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, has scheduled a public preview of the fourth lockhouse to be made available for overnight stays as part of Canal Quarters.

Lockhouse 28-Saturday, May 21, 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Continued: http://www.theoutdoorwire.com/story/1304668651e56p8ejswvf

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Hillside Motel in Brunswick
AM on 05/04/2011 09:48 PM
I never knew about this motel until just about a month ago, I satyed here, It is so peaceful and the view is great, i found the rooms to be very clean, the housekeeper i met and she was very nice, also the manager Lisa is very nice and made me feel very welcome. I would recommend this place to anyone.

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lenny from blairsville, pa on 04/18/2011 07:40 PM
Anything new with amtrac roll on service? They need to get that started.

Willyjog from Cincinnati on 05/01/2011 06:37 PM
There is no roll on service at the Pittsbrg Amtrak. However, they sell bike boxes (ver large) which cost $15. Boxing the bike is easy. The lady I talked to at the Pitts Amtrak knew nothing about the roll on service.

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rv parks near trail
Bev Baccelli from Mattapoisett MA on 04/12/2011 05:22 PM
We are planning to ride the canal trail in sections and have a small camper van we plan to use. Anyone know of any campgrounds/rv parks near any of the lengths of the trail

Randy on 04/13/2011 10:08 AM
The National Park Service has a drive-in Camp Ground at Little Orleans. On the map it is referred to as: Fifteen Mile Creek Camp Ground. You also have the Green Ridge State Forest in this area. There is also a commercial campground in this area called the Little Orleans Campground.
Be careful when you plan your trip if you stay near Little Orleans. There is a big "biker" event that takes place during the summer (unless you like the Harley crowd).
You may also want to check out the Harpers Ferry and Antietam National Battlefield for potential Camping locations.

Paul A on 04/29/2011 05:22 PM
The drive in sites are Antietam Creek, McCoys Ferry, /fifteen Mile Creek, Paw Paw, and Spring Gap according to my outdated trail book

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