A beautiful sunny day with low humidity and mild temperatures for our signature day of the ride. Today, we left the C&O Canal at its terminus and began the 150 mile Great Allegheny Passage, or GAP. The GAP is a rails to trails path created when the Western Maryland and PLE (Pittsburgh and Lake Erie) Railroads ceased operations in 1975 and 1991 respectively. The GAP was completed in June 2013.
Our ride went from Cumberland at about 600 feet elevation to the Eastern Continental Divide at 2392 feet in 23.5 miles and then descended to Rockwood. Along the way we crossed the Mason-Dixon line into Pennsylvania, went through the 3300 feet Big Savage Tunnel and across the 1908 foot Salisbury Viaduct. The GAP is well maintained with a crushed limestone base and whereas the C&O Canal Path was muddy the entire 184.5 mile length, I didn't see one drop of water or mud on the GAP today.
|End of the C&O Canal in Cumberland, MD|
|Beginning of the GAP|
|Riding on the GAP|
|Crossing into Pennsylvania|
|The Big Savage Tunnel|
|Crossing the Eastern Continental Divide|