Best travel direction -
aro from Scottsdale on 04/18/2010 11:49 AM
What is the best direction for travel? It appears that the elevation change from E to W is very sharp at the Cumberland area.
whisperingwind from Hagerstown Md on 05/20/2010 12:45 PM
From Georgetown Md to Cumberland Md on the C&O, the elevation change is 605 feet in 184 miles. On the GAP, you have constant elevation changes between Cumberland and Pittsburg. So my direction of travel would be from Pittsburg to Cumberland on the GAP, however, on the C&O, I would rather start in G-town and head west to Cumberland.
km from cape cod, ma on 05/25/2010 11:15 AM
I just finished the trip riding from DC to Pittsburgh with my aunt and uncle. We all agreed that it is best to go in that direction. The entire path is pretty flat, even the "climb" west of Cumberland. The C&O Towpath seemed great to us, until we got to the GAP path, which was in even better condition and seems to drain better if it is rainy. Don't be scared by the elevation chart--there is a lot of vertical exaggeration in it!
jeff from madison on 10/05/2010 10:35 PM
Glade to here that it is not bad out of Cumberland. Going to do a 100 mile day trip from Paw Paw to the eastern continental divide and back in late October
Libertaian from Florida on 10/31/2010 08:05 AM
WHY the preference for traveling westward versus eastward?
Wilderness Voyageurs in Ohiopyle -
Anonymous on 10/26/2010 05:52 AM
Wilderness Voyageurs offers Inn to Innbike tours 3-day, 6-day and custom tours
Falling Waters Lock -
TZ from Frederick on 10/21/2010 11:33 AM
We drove Falling Waters Road trying to hike at the F.W. lock; but the road led to a private gun club. Is there another road & parking that is near the F.W. lock?
Ramp Closed During Debris Removal -
Ray on 10/18/2010 05:29 AM
Dickerson, MD. - The Monocacy River boat ramp will be closed weekdays from 7:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. during the debris removal process at the Monocacy Aqueduct, located in the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park. Recently, maintenance staff cleared debris from the two outer arches of the Monocacy Aqueduct, allowing boats to safely pass from the Monocacy River to the Potomac River. Garcete Construction was awarded the debris removal contract and has begun work to clear the remaining debris. Park staff anticipates more arches will open soon.
During the debris removal process visitors should use care when passing through the work zone and anticipate increased traffic on Mouth of Monocacy Road. For more information, please contact Mike Seibert, Chief of Maintenance Division, at (301) 714-2239.
Leesburg hotels -
Oct 2010 trail rider from Indianapolis on 10/12/2010 01:31 PM
If you look at the web site for the Leesburg Colonial Inn it says they offer shuttle service from the C&O trail to their facility. DON'T BELIEVE IT! It took them 3 hours to come get me and then they left me stranded at the hotel the next morning with no way back to the trail. I had to end up calling a cab that cost me $27. Avoid this hotel.
Bill's Place in Little Orleans -
Brian from Walkersville on 09/21/2010 06:40 PM
found Bill's Place 3 years ago during East Coast Sturgis and have gone since then. Love the uniqueness of the place and Bill is a fun guy. Can't wait for the Halloween party!!
Randy from Elizabethtown, PA on 10/06/2010 09:35 AM
Planning a day trip. Where is parking available near the C&O Canal near the Little Orleans area? I'm looking at the Google Satellite image and I don't see much. It could be obscured by trees. There's supposed to be a Camp Site right off the trail. Is the Parking relatively secure. Can you park near Bill's Place? Thanks.
Dam 4 Detour -
Cyclesome from Hooversville, Pa on 09/23/2010 02:25 PM
Is there any other way to bypass the Dam 4 Detour? I hear it is steep and I am not sure I want my mom riding on this section. Any ideas on how to avoid this section to continue on? Walk your bike on towpath? Advice needed.
Pete F from Mechanicsville on 09/27/2010 09:03 PM
I rode west last year and I think there is only one way to ride the bypass. There was a steep hill on a windy road as soon as I got off of the trail but that last long. I think it was at most a half mile and then the rest of the bypass was a very gentle ride back to the towpath.
jeff from madison on 10/05/2010 10:19 PM
wait a few years till it is fixed? Steep for a little ways out of the river basin. After that rolling hills with fairly cautious drivers.
Parking in Cumberland and Williamsport -
Pete F from Mechanicsville on 09/27/2010 08:44 PM
I've got two days to do a short ride next week. Where are some good places for overnight parking in Cumberland and Williamsport? Or maybe near Great Falls and Williamsport? Is overnight parking at visitors' centers a good idea (or even permissible)?
Lockhouse 6 to the Tiadal Basin -
Larry, North Huntingdon, Pa from North Huntingdon on 09/15/2010 08:08 PM
Planning a trip in late March 2011 to see the cherry blossoms. We are staying at Lockhouse 6 on the C&O. Could some one please tell me the SAFEIST rout to the Tideal Basin. I would like to do all trail if at all possable. Your help would be greatly appreieated. Thanks!
Michael from Woodbridge,VA on 09/21/2010 01:36 AM
When you get to D.C., head down to the National Mall. DO NOT ride close to the cherry blossoms. Park your bike and LOCK it up with wheel off and take the seat with you as seat thefts are abundant in D.C. area. Walk to the cherry blossoms and enjoy them. It is impossible for biker to take bikes around the trees when people are out seeing the trees in full blossom. Peak time is never the same each year, but the Park Service does a good job with telling public when they are near peak and are at peak. I suggest going to see them in the morning during a work day as people are in the offices and tourists are not as much. Hope this helps.
I am starting to plan the GAP trip from D.C. to PITT for sometime in the spring. I hope to do it in a week as I like to take my time and enjoy the scenery. Plus, 100 miles a day is not something that I think my rear would enjoy.
Larry from North Huntingdon, Pa on 09/26/2010 10:23 AM
Michael, Thank you very much for the info, very helpfull. I'm with you on the 100 mile days, Good luck on your trip. I live on the other end from you. If I can answer any questions you may have about this end ,Good food ect, please shout them out.
Larry from North Huntingdon on 09/26/2010 09:37 PM
Michael or anyone else planning a trip to the Pittsburgh end. If you can fit Ceader Creek in your schedule as a camp spot you will not be dissapointed. Nice park, tables, grills & fire rings & wood is usualy plentyfull. FREE to bikers & hikers. VERY NICE stop right on the trail. No road-ride
Bill's Place in Little Orleans -
biker from linden tx. on 07/01/2010 09:56 PM
loved this place. good food cold beer.
Bonnie from Little Orleans on 09/04/2010 10:55 PM
nice that you stoped at my dad's place.Keep him in your prayers,he has 4th.stage lung cancer.He is still working and loves meeting new people.
Jack from Winchester, VA on 09/21/2010 06:44 AM
Bills is about the coolest place on the trail. Was there last weekend and stayed at the park campsite. Everything was good.
Boston Lodging -
Jobtraklite from Quincy, Il on 06/14/2010 12:48 PM
You do not list the
Yough Shore Inn
1403 Boston Hollow Rd
Boston, PA 15135
I should add that their website which I accessed just a few days ago has expired.
Jobtraklite from Quincy, Il on 09/15/2010 07:54 PM
We enjoyed our stay in the "safari" room at the Yough Shore Inn on our ride from the Pittsburgh Amtrak to Cumberland Amtrak. The inn is located 0.4 mile from the trail, a little less than half way on a side street and the rest on a main road with shoulders. I was expecting it to be up a hill, but there was none.
From the front it looks more like a suburban ranch house than a Yuppie weekend get-away B&B. But the view from the deck in the rear made up for it. The layout and breakfast was especially well suited for bicycle tourists.
The room decor is definitely different.
Overnight Parking around mile 20? -
Carla from Arlington, VA on 09/15/2010 03:11 PM
I'm up to my last long run before my marathon, and wanted to do the 20 miles on the C&O Canal, one way, instead of the out and back route I now do (I just ran a 20 out and back, and loved the view, I want to see more this time!). I'm starting from Georgetown, but for the life of me I cannot find a place to park my car overnight near mile 20 (give or take 3 miles is fine). It needs to be overnight, since I live in Arlington, and my run will start at 6am. Any ideas?
Getting started on C&O trail -
DP from Pittsburgh on 08/27/2010 02:51 PM
I'm leaving Union Station in DC to start my trip from DC to Pgh. I've never been on the C&O trail. Worried about navigating those first few miles. Any words of wisdom about keeping on the trail in DC and first 10-15 miles and not getting lost?
Paul Mulvey from Easton PA on 09/12/2010 07:28 AM
The trail is very well marked, and it starts in Georgetown. Once you get to Georgetown, you should have no problem staying on the trail all the way to Cumberland.
DP from Pittsburgh on 08/27/2010 02:52 PM
Anyone camped at McMahon's Mill Campground? Would love to know what you think.
Bill's Place in Little Orleans -
Dollar Bill from White Marsh MD on 08/16/2010 02:29 PM
My family and I go here every year while camping at Little Orleans Camp Ground to celebrate my daughters birthday. We all think Bill is the greatest with his stories and jokes. Just a great place to visit.
Riverrun B&B in Hancock -
Anonymous on 08/14/2010 09:20 AM
Great place for bikers w/laundry facilities, secure bike storage, central a/c, wi fi, computer, DVD, great breakfast, close to bike shop, closest to C&O Canal and WMRT. All newly renovated in former whiskey warehouse.
Trail conditions?? -
Lauren from Arlington on 08/12/2010 06:48 PM
We are heading to Pittsburgh next week to bike the GAP and C and O back to DC.... Any one know anything about how the trail looks following all these thunderstorms??
West Newton 136 bridge -
Ray on 07/12/2010 07:43 PM
Allegheny Trail Alliance reports: The 136 bridge in West Newton has been closed due to structural safety concerns. GAP trail & all businesses still open -use W136 to access!
Larry from North Huntingdon, Pa. on 08/06/2010 09:45 PM
Bridge work is now compleat. Open both ways
C&O Condition Update? -
Gritty Hack from Lansdale, Pa on 05/05/2010 04:10 PM
Has anyone traveled the C&O since the March floods? Am planning the Pittsburgh to DC trip in early June and was wondering what the trail conditions are like currently.
protech on 05/06/2010 08:12 AM
I'm doing the ride May 19th through the 21st. I let you know.
chris from Slippery Rock on 05/12/2010 01:38 PM
I'm leaving tomorrow. I'll post some updates when I return.
JDL from Ohio on 05/14/2010 10:09 PM
Am riding E. to W. starting 5/25 in D.C. Anything of interest would be appreciated.
whisperingwind from Hagerstown Md on 05/20/2010 12:41 PM
I have been on the canal since the flood between Dam 5, and Cumberland Valley Campsite. The trail is back in decent shape in this 10 mile stretch.
John on 05/24/2010 01:07 PM
I finished the canal path from Cumberland to DC on Saturday the 22nd. Kind of muddy up near Cumberland but the path was totally passable.
Anonymous on 08/04/2010 11:06 AM
Where did you stay from Harpers Ferry to Georgetown?
Biking from Harpers' Ferry to Georgetown with Troo -
Dawna from Clinton on 08/04/2010 11:01 AM
Our troop is biking from Harpers Ferry to Georgetown and wondered if anyone else camped along the way and had any suggestions. We have a sag wagon who has our gear and also wondered if there was a campground along the route that would be easier for him to get a vehicle in too. Thanks.
Found Camera -
"G" on 07/28/2010 07:28 AM
While biking between Whites Ferry and Georgetown, I found a digital camera. If you can ID it, I would really like to return it to you.
Dawna from Clinton on 08/04/2010 10:58 AM
Quick question since you biked between Harpers Ferry and Georgetown, we have our BSA Troop biking and wondered where you camped along this part of the C&O?
Bavarian Inn in Shepherdstown -
Steve from Georgia from Tiger, GA on 07/18/2010 08:11 AM
Stayed here several years ago on our bike trip southbound from Cumberland. A little expensive for some folks, but we splurged for one night and really enjoyed it. We walked into town and did laundry and ate at one of the many restaurants. Nice place just across the river from the trail.
Cat from Savannah on 07/23/2010 09:12 PM
Are there picnic tables at the campsites?
Washington DC to Pittsburgh -
Postiebrian from Pinner, in the UK on 03/31/2010 11:04 AM
We are 2 cycling buddies from the UK,after a few days in Washington seeing the sights we need
to get to Pittsburgh leaving DC on the 16/5/10 we then have two weeks to cycle back.Best way to get to Pittsburgh Bus or Train?any info would be a great help prices/ times/cost.
Thanks for any help Brian.
John from Bardstown, Ky on 04/19/2010 06:27 AM
Try the train, they have have a baggage car. I don't know if a bus could handle all your bikes.
The train from DC will put you in Pittsburgh late evening.
Cass from Falls Church, Va on 07/14/2010 12:57 PM
With two weeks, why not just ride up and back? It only takes 5 or 6 days to get from one end to the other-
GAP Pittsburgh link -
Ray on 07/13/2010 09:39 AM
Sandcastle nearing bike trail agreement
Last link in Great Allegheny Passage
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
By Jon Schmitz, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Allegheny County and Sandcastle Waterpark are expected to announce an
agreement within days that will allow completion of the last missing piece
of a biking and hiking trail linking Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C.
"I really expect we'll have a formal announcement in the next couple days,"
said James Judy, vice president of operations for Palace Entertainment,
owner of the park.
"I believe that is probably going to be the case," agreed county spokesman
The deal would cap years of negotiations aimed at finding a way to
accommodate the trail on the park's narrow strip of land between a railroad
line and the Monongahela River.
The roughly one-mile stretch is the last link in the 150-mile Great
Allegheny Passage from Pittsburgh to Cumberland, Md., where it connects to
the C&O Towpath to Washington.
When all is complete, it will be possible to bike about 335 continuous,
mostly flat miles from Pittsburgh to the nation's capital without
interference from motorized traffic.
The former owners of Sandcastle for years resisted efforts to build the
trail through the park, saying there wasn't enough room.
"The next time you visit Sandcastle take a close look at the tight access
road and try to visualize a 10-foot-wide trail running between the road and
the railroad tracks. I hope you will conclude that not having the available
land wide enough for a trail does not make us stubborn," said Peter McAneny,
then-president of Kennywood Entertainment, in a 2008 letter to the
Mr. McAneny and county officials announced later that year that a deal was
close, but the talks got sidetracked when Kennywood Park and Sandcastle were
"We're thrilled to be on the trail," Mr. Judy said in a pho
Ray on 07/13/2010 09:40 AM
"We're thrilled to be on the trail," Mr. Judy said in a phone interview from
California on Monday. "It's been a very high priority for me to get this
done." He said the park owners did not want to be the only missing link.
The site is accessible by a narrow two-lane road and has limited parking,
which fills to capacity several times a year, he said. "It's been an
extremely tricky piece of property to work with."
The county helped to design a plan that would minimize the impact on parking
by re-striping the lots. The trail will run parallel to the access road, Mr.
The trail developers cleared another major hurdle last week with placement
of two bridges over railroad lines in the Mon Valley. Crews hoisted
prefabricated bridges over active freight lines in Whitaker and Duquesne
along the Monongahela River.
That cleared the way for construction of a 21/2-mile section linking
Duquesne and The Waterfront retail complex. That piece is expected to be
completed in January.
No construction timetable has been announced for the Sandcastle section. An
agreement with the water park would keep the county on track to meet county
Executive Dan Onorato's goal of completing the entire trail by "11-11-11" --
Nov. 11, 2011.
Jon Schmitz: email@example.com or 412-263-1868. Visit "The
Roundabout," the Post-Gazette's transportation blog, at post-gazette.com.
Anonymous on 04/13/2010 01:24 PM
Feisty senior citizens, one with two new knees, wishes to cycle from Meyersdale PA to McKeesport PA based on elevations going downhill. Are there any long stretches requiring walking/or hard uphill cycyling?
Jobtraklite from Quincy, Il on 06/15/2010 10:38 AM
If you are starting from the TRAIL HEAD in Meyersdale, the answer is NO. The only even short, slight uphill might be getting back on the trail at Confluence because the original RR bridge high above the river is not in use.
Starting from downtown Meyersdale is a different story.
Super 8 Motel of Hancock in Hancock -
Steve from Chicago IL on 05/24/2010 11:54 AM
Stayed here in 2008 during a rainy trip from Cumberland to Georgetown. This Super 8 is what you would expect from a chain; clean, modest accomodations, and inexpensive. The staff was very friendly and the best part was they had a hose to spray our muddy bikes. Close to restaurants and the trail. I would stay here again.
Jobtraklite from Quincy, IL on 06/15/2010 10:29 AM
Talk about deja vu. I could have written these same words when I did Cumberland to DC back in 1995, especially that part about the hose.
Motel Sleepers in Brunswick -
Steve from Chicago on 05/24/2010 11:43 AM
Stayed here in 2008 while biking from Cumberland to Georgetown with a few buddies. Normally we would not have chosen to stay in Brunswick but we learned Whites Ferry was not operating. Unable to make it to our lodging across the river we found the Motel Sleepers aka Green Country Inn. This was an odd place; very dormitory like and kind of depressing (sort of like a nursing home). We learned it is/was a place for railroaders to stay while away from home. But it was clean and the people there were nice.
JObtraklite from Quincy, il on 06/14/2010 04:11 PM
Based on a stay here in 2006, this is a fair description. Also, at least at that time there was a restaurant on the premises that kept late hours, if not 24.
Anonymous on 06/14/2010 04:16 PM
I notice the restaurant is listed as the Green Country Inn. So if the list is accurate, it's still there.
Contact email fixed -
Ray (webmaster) on 06/07/2010 01:44 PM
The email address on the "Contact Us" page is now working. Sorry for the inconvenience.
Anonymous from baltimore on 05/25/2010 12:25 PM
trying to go canoeing this weekend 5/28 from paw paw to bonds with 12 year olds some with experience. what is the river like? thinking it might be too high and fast.
Holiday Inn Cumberland in Cumberland -
Steve from Chicago on 05/24/2010 11:56 AM
Stayed here in 2008 before our ride to Georgetown. Staff was very accomodating. They let us keep our bikes in a secure room right next to the reception desk. Close to restaurants. I would stay here again.
Trail Access? -
Anonymous on 05/05/2008 01:28 PM
Where does one actually get onto the towpath? Can't see where I might park or actually get onto the trail. Assistance much appreciated.
JDL from Ohio on 05/14/2010 10:06 PM
Have ridden the C&O from Cumberland to D.C. In Cumberland, under a highway bridge (downtown; near train center), long term parking is available. Check in with folks at railroad museum, in historic train center.
Point of Rocks -
baboo from keymar on 04/19/2010 04:46 PM
Are you allowed to put boats in the river anywhere near here?
John on 04/20/2010 08:38 AM
I saw there is a steep boat ramp at Nolands Ferry. See pic at this web site. http://www.capitolareafishing.com/november-11-nolands-ferrymdva/
Ray (webmaster) on 04/20/2010 08:59 AM
You'll find an interactive map to the Nolands Ferry ramp on this page: http://www.bikecando.com/nolands-ferry.aspx
Spring is finally here -
Anonymous on 04/05/2010 09:28 PM
It's beautiful out there
Volunteers needed for sandbagging - March 13 -
Ray (webmaster) on 03/13/2010 08:44 AM
You might be seeing these notices after Saturday morning, but if you want to help I would still suggest calling - these efferts might be going on for many days:
Lockhouse 6 Needs Your Help! -
Volunteers needed Saturday
In preparation for the flood, which is expected to crest near Lockhouse 6 on Sunday, the C&O Canal Trust will sandbag the lockhouse beginning at noon this Saturday, March 13th. Materials and equipment will be provided, though additional wheelbarrows would be welcomed. Assistance may also be required to move furnishings associated with the Trust's Canal Quarters program.
Please keep in mind, parking at this location is very limited.
If you have specific questions, please contact Matthew Logan at 301-512-7027 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Volunteers Needed at Great Falls -
Sandbagging to take place at Tavern
The Historic Tavern at Great Falls is also enlisting the help of volunteers tomorrow beginning at 9 a.m. All persons interested in helping should call the Visitor Center first thing tomorrow morning at 301-767-3714.
Cushwa Warehouse Needs Help -
Items to be moved to second floor
The Cushwa building, which houses the Visitor Center at Williamsport, will likely be inundated before the weekend is over. Volunteers are gathering tomorrow morning to disassemble exhibits and move items to the second floor. Work will begin by 8:30. To assist, contact Curt Gaul by calling 301-491-6265.
C&O Declares Flood Emergency - EXPECT CLOSURES -
Ray (webmaster) on 03/13/2010 08:32 AM
Superintendent Kevin Brandt has signed a Flood Emergency Declaration for the C&O Canal National Historical Park.
There is still a considerable snow pack in the mountains of the Potomac Watershed. The National Weather Service estimates that 5" to 9" of liquid moisture could still be in this snow. They also forecast additional rain totals could exceed 8". The melting snow combined with the forecasted rain is expected to produce a major flood along the length of the park.
To prepare for the impending flood, the park has already begun to close various facilities and access points. For more information on closures, please visit the park website.
Flood Warning for March 2010 -
Ray (webmaster) on 03/13/2010 08:26 AM
From the Park service, via C&O Canal Assn:
Expected heavy rainfall during the weekend of March 12-14, 2010 may result in major flooding along sections of the C&O Canal. The Potomac River is expected to reach flood stage in all areas of the park between Saturday, March 13 and Tuesday, March 16, 2010. Park visitors are asked to use extreme caution during periods of high water. Hikers and bikers planning to use campgrounds along the canal are advised to seek alternate accommodations. Area closures are anticipated. For updates call the C&O Canal Flood Information Line at 1-888-445-0023.
Mommer's Diner -
Anonymous on 08/30/2008 05:35 PM
great food. reasonable prices. good service even to wet, muddy bikers.
Mommer's Diner -
Anonymous on 08/30/2008 05:34 PM
food was awesome. pleasant environment.
Anonymous on 05/05/2008 01:29 PM
BTW I'd like to get onto the trail around Bethesda or Cabin John. Thanks
Back in the water -
Ray on 06/14/2007 07:49 AM
This boat was closed for a while for repairs, but is back in operation as of early June.
Visitors' Center closed -
Psychlist on 06/14/2007 07:45 AM
Thru the fall of 2007, the Great Falls Tavern Visitors Center is closed for renovation, but there is a temporary visitor center and restroom facilities by the refreshment stand. The lower parking lot is also closed.