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The C&O Canal Towpath Trail and Great Allegheny Passage

Beware of the Wicked Walnuts

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Rivnuts from Homestead, PA on 10/10/2023 7:49:16 PM:
As Fall is now upon us and Halloween is just around the corner, beware of the wicked walnuts! By that I mean walnuts have fallen all over the trail, especially along the C&O. They are often obscured by fallen leaves. For those riding narrow tires, the walnuts present a danger of losing control if hit head on with the front wheel. I saw one rider go down hard as a result.

Be careful when riding through these areas.

Ti_Nut from missouri on 10/12/2023 11:19:23 AM:
Any specific areas to be mindful of on these Wicked Walnuts?

Rivnuts from Homestead PA on 10/12/2023 11:43:52 AM:
As I mentioned in my post, they exist more frequently along the C&O versus the GAP where they do not appear as often. On the C&O they are more prevalent where the Towpath is lined with trees. Unfortunately, this is much of its length. If you divert to the WMRT along the C&O route around Hancock, they are less prevalent and more visible.

You just have to have more short range vigilance rather than always looking casually far ahead on the trail. It just makes the ride a little less carefree and enjoyable.

WKR from Brunswick, MD on 10/13/2023 9:22:27 AM:
Also, for folks not familiar with walnuts, they are a little smaller than a tennis ball and are green when they initially fall turning dark brown over time. The green outer layer is removed when walnuts are sold in stores. You can google walnut images to see what I'm talking about. They're pretty easy to spot when they're nice and bright green but do get lost in the leaves and they darken up.

They are also murder on your ankles and easy to trip on for runners.