Recommended for cyclists with multiday ride experience, YOU pick the dates for this trip.
This itinerary includes:
Download the trip summary: 6-Day Pittsburgh to DC sample itinerary
This itinerary can be taken in either direction. So which direction should I ride?
A complete experience for trail enthusiasts!
Ride day – 59 miles. Pittsburgh to Connellsville.
Ride out from the Western Terminus at the Point in downtown Pittsburgh to start your journey. You’ll enjoy almost 20 miles of paved trail before reaching Boston and the crushed gravel trail surface that will last until Cumberland. Passing through small trail communities this day, you can stop for lunch in West Newton or pack a lunch for the trail. At the end of the day ride into the town of Connellsville and check into your B&B.
Ride day – 59 miles. Connellsville to Meyersdale.
After a hot breakfast at the B&B, bike out of Connellsville into Ohiopyle State Park and perhaps the most beautiful section of the GAP. Much of the trail this day is a mix of isolated forest and rolling farmland. You’ll cross the Salisbury Viaduct before finally entering Meyersdale for the night. Check into your B&B and enjoy dinner in town. [Groups of 4 or more have the option of including dinner at the B&B this night.]
Ride day – 75 miles. Meyersdale to Little Orleans
Make sure to take advantage of your hearty breakfast before starting out on your longest ride day of the trip. A few miles past Meyersdale you’ll enjoy the view at the top of the Eastern Continental Divide before descending almost 20 miles into Cumberland. At Canal Place in Cumberland the GAP joins the C&O Canal Towpath. The canal trail passes through isolated forest and park lands at this end of the towpath. Another highlight of the day will be the engineering marvel that is the Paw Paw Tunnel (lights are needed). About 15 miles past the tunnel you’ll ride into Fifteen Mile Creek Recreation Area and the end of your day. Enjoy a well-earned dinner at Bill’s Place and then meet your shuttle to your night’s lodging. [Larger groups may have the option of including dinner at the B&B on this night.]
Ride day – 42 miles. Little Orleans to Williamsport.
You’ll be shuttled back to the trail after breakfast for your second ride day on the C&O. Today the Western Maryland Rail Trail (WMRT) will parallel the C&O trail for just over 20 miles; riders can choose to take advantage of the paved rail-trail surface before getting back onto the towpath. You’ll pass through Hancock around midday and ride into Williamsport for the night. Stop for dinner in town and then ride on to your hotel for the night.
Ride day – 41 miles. Williamsport to Harpers Ferry.
Stop for your breakfast in town. Another full day of riding the towpath takes your through several historic towns and locations of Civil War battles. At the end of the day you’ll walk across the pedestrian bridge and into Harpers Ferry, Lower Town which is a national park. In addition to the amazing scenery of the Harpers Ferry area, you can enjoy the small boutiques and restaurants of this historic town.
Ride day – 60 miles. Harpers Ferry to DC.
This last day of riding takes you past abandoned and restored pieces of the C&O Canal. At milepost 14 is Great Falls Visitor Center, a perfect location to take a break and see the natural wonder of the falls on the Potomac River. Past Great Falls you’ll finish out the last section of the C&O Towpath and ride into the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C.