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GAP/C&O Canal trail as a tuneup?

Has anyone ridden the GAP/C&O Canal Trail as a tuneup for Ragbrai? Solo or as part of an organized tour? Which tour company did you use?

Any and all light my brethren and sistern Ragbrai’ers can shed is gratefully appreciated.

See you along the I-O-Way in July.

21 Replies

Sandaltan ., March 17, 2019 at 1:04 pm

This video is good through March 31.
https://www.wqed.org/ride

RIDE RIGHT

#1301025

kurmdgn, March 23, 2019 at 7:53 pm

Interesting…I did the Erie Canal ride last year( I’ve done RAGBRAI 5 times so far ) and became aware of the GAP last year. On my list for next year. I’m doing GOBA this year try something new.

#1301505

T. Gap Woo, April 10, 2019 at 8:51 am

This may be useful for planning. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1TieBdO7w7idjPmT2JbyY7yNk8RQ4GVGtOOhe3qny-U/edit#gid=1005431305

RIDE RIGHT

ST,

Thanks for this piece of valuable information. My planned daily route matches your spreadsheet exactly. Mrs Woo will find the lodging info extremely helpful as she plans the overnight stays. You saved her a ton of work! Now we just need to settle on the dates to ride.

See you along the I-O-Way im July.

#1302511

Jim Hemphill, April 10, 2019 at 6:22 pm

I’ve been on various parts of the GAP/C&O a half dozen times, and have ridden the entire 150 miles of the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) and the 184 miles of the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal trail (C&O) on successive summers.

The GAP is the more scenic and has a better surface. Thinks fine gravel over asphalt and you’re close. The C&O is an old mule path, never paved, and is quite rugged and stony. Not fun if wet. You really need a mountain bike, or at least mountain bike tires, for the C&O, while you could actually ride a road bike on the GAP. Not optimal, but possible. As a generalization, a mile on the C&O is worth 1.7 miles on the road, in terms of effort and conditioning.

There is a great website (www.bikecando.com) that has detailed, organized info on both the GAP and C&O. Trail towns, distances, amenities, closures, etc. As someone mentioned, there are bike spaces on the train from DC to Pittsburgh, so you can ride one way and return with your bike by train.

If anyone is interested in doing some part of the trip as a tune up, preferably a few weeks before, let me know by replying to this post. I’m old and fat and kinda slow, but I do know how to sequence the GAP/C&O at various levels of intensity and fitness.

#1302539

Sandaltan ., April 10, 2019 at 8:13 pm

TGO: I don’t have my itinerary with me but from my photos we bunked as follows on the GAP during our 2010 ride:
Bright Morning B & B in West Newton, Yough Plaza Motel in Ohiopyle, Yoder’s Motel in Meyersdale (GI Day Room for breakfast pancakes in Meyersdale) and Holiday Inn in Cumberland. Our C&O lodging is less apparent to me, no photos of the signs. Will ponder further.

RIDE RIGHT

#1302540

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