On July 16, 2016, I hopped on my bike and rode from Washington DC to Pittsburgh, PA on a tow path and adjoining rail trail over 6 days, with 7 riders joining me for various lengths of the journey. Besides being a fun, scenic, and overall enjoyable ride, the purpose was to raise support and awareness for the world's water crisis. While on the trail, I was constantly reminded about the importance of water.Read More
Day 1: Georgetown to Marble Quarry Campsite - 37.8 miles
An easy day of riding with a fairly well groomed trail. Notable stops were at Great Falls (hike out for the view of the Potomac River) and the Great Falls Visitor's Center (catch a look at the horses pulling the boat).
We hit a storm rolling in about 2 miles from the campsite, so we hunkered down in a pavilion next to the Whites Ferry for about 2 hours. It turned into a perfect shelter from the rain. My cousin's wife was able to meet us with dinner.Read More
Day 2 - Marble Quarry to Jordan Junction - 63.4 miles
We rolled out of camp a little later than expected, but the bullfrogs were loud during the night so it was a somewhat slow morning. Whenever I jump on my bike, I always feel like I'm missing something, perhaps that's because nothing is actually attached to my body. As we rolled out of camp, I was excited to begin exploring more of the trail.Read More
Day 3 - Jordan Junction to Potomac Forks - 63.6 miles
Thieves struck in the middle of the night, the furry kind that are sneaky. At 11:30pm I heard my lidded-bowl fall to the ground. I emerged from the tent to investigate with pepper spray in hand, a whistle, and my headlamp. I found the bowl under the picnic table, grabbed it and went back into the tent. A few hours later I heard more rustling, so I again grabbed the arsenal and headed out into the night. This time my little stove was gone and my pannier was partly unrolled, but still clipped shut. I needed more light so I grabbed the light off of my bike and began searching for my stove. About 10 feet away, I found the stove! At 2:30 am, it's not the best time to be fiddling with hanging food bags, so I just took the pannier and stove into the tent. Thankfully the raccoons left me alone, although I did hear them rustling through remaining items on the picnic table. Lesson learned, hang the food!Read More
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.Read More
Day 5 - Meyersdale to River's Edge Family Campground - 60 miles
After crossing the Eastern Continental Divide, it was supposed to be all down hill, I guess it was but it was hard to tell. I met up with my final riding companion in the morning and we took off on the super highway, the GAP Trail. This trail is well groomed and much faster riding than the C&O Canal.Read More
Day 6 - River's Edge Family Campground to Pittsburgh - 58 miles
The last day on the trail! It was a bittersweet finish. The time on the trail was worth every challenge, muscle tweak, and hot, sweaty day. Six days and 334 miles of trail was an amazing journey and accomplishment. When I got home, I started searching for other trails without traffic. There is something nice about hitting a trail instead of the road, and I've done both.Read More