Day 4 - Potomac Forks to Meyersdale - 51.2 miles
A farmer stopped the night before as he was making his way back from scoping out a fishing spot, and told to make my way down to the river for an incredible view. I'm sorry to say I didn't make it down to the river. Hunger overcame me the night before and in the morning the activity of packing up camp consumed too much time. I guess I'll have to return sometime to get the view.
There was a delay getting started in the morning, because I wasn't emerging from the tent while the rain was still falling. I had a rider joining me for the morning, so it was a rush to get everything packed up, breakfast made, and water filtered before the meeting time. It was only 18 miles until I would finish the C&O Canal trail, all 184.5 miles of it from Washington DC.
Once in Cumberland, Maryland, the trail switches to the Great Allegheny Passage for 150 mile, of what one rider called the "Super Highway!" It was a much different trail condition than the C&O Canal trail. The main reason everyone travels from Pittsburgh to DC, as opposed to my direction, was because of the 25 mile 1.5% grade elevation change from Cumberland, Maryland to the Eastern Continental Divide. It was an unrelenting climb, for which there was only one water stop near the top. Note for future travelers, make sure you have water and oil your chain at the bike shop in Cumberland before climbing the hill.
I decided to treat myself to a B&B after having such a hard day 3 with the downed trees, and I shortened the distance from my original plan, which worked out well because of the hill climb taking a little longer. The Yoder's Guest House in Meyersdale, Pennsylvania was a perfect respite for my tired body looking for a soft bed and a hot shower. Meyersdale is a cute town with a variety of eateries and anything else you might need.
One of the best things about life on the trail is meeting all of the fellow cyclists. At the water stop in Frostburg, on the climb out of Cumberland, I met two cyclists on their way from Portland, Oregon on a cross-country trek. Lots of great people out there taking on the challenge of cycling long distances.