Bike Tour | Great Allegheny Passage Rail Trail2018-11-20T22:02:15+00:00

Great Allegheny Passage Rail Trail (GAP Trail)

6-DAY / 5-NIGHT BIKE TOUR – $1,795
2019 Dates: May 5-10, May 12-17 (SOLD OUT), May 19-24,
Sept. 15-20, Sept. 22-27, and Sept. 29-Oct. 4, 2019

The GAP Trail is on the bucket list of many cyclists for good reason. Its spectacular views and peaceful surroundings will thrill you. The wide crushed-gravel trail follows a railroad grade the full distance, with views of the Allegheny Mountains and the Casselman, Youghiogheny and Monongahela rivers. Our route ends in downtown Pittsburgh at the famous “three rivers” confluence of the Monongahela, Allegheny and Ohio Rivers.

We start in Cumberland, MD, with the trip up to the Eastern Continental Divide and through a one-mile historical rail tunnel. The first three days are deep in the Allegheny Mountains, highlighted by the beautiful Ohiopyle State Park. We’ll also visit the Flight 93 National Memorial near Shanksville, PA.

In addition to the opportunity to ride all 150 miles of the GAP Trail, we’ll do a ride on the C&O Canal Trail on the first day out of Cumberland, MD. Our final day will allow you to see the transition from rural Pennsylvania through the evolving river corridors of Pittsburgh with a triumphant finish at the revitalized downtown area with its famous sports stadiums.

To fully experience the splendor of the entire length of this historic railroad route, we stay in comfortable, but casual inns — some of which are a departure from our customary sumptuous accommodations. You’ll enjoy delicious meals, gorgeous scenery and outdoor camaraderie in these lovely locations.

Great Allegheny Passage Rail Trail (GAP Trail), Biking Tour Itinerary

SUNDAY  | Arrival Day | Distance: 15 miles | Terrain: Easier | Fairfield Inn

The tour starts and ends at the Hampton Inn & Suites Pittsburgh-Downtown. If you plan to drive, we can recommend nearby locations to leave your car. If you fly in or arrive via Amtrak, get a ride to the Hampton Inn. We meet there at 10 a.m. for a 2-hour drive to Cumberland, MD. After lunch in a historical diner in Frostburg, MD, we arrive at mile 0.0 of the GAP trail, where we stay at the Cumberland Fairfield Inn and Suites. We’ll change into biking gear and shuttle 20 minutes to the C&O Canal Trail and cycle back into town. This historical treasure of a trail begins in Washington, DC, and ends in Cumberland. The canal was finally abandoned in the 1920s having lost the battle for relevance with the railroads. Dinner is at a local Italian restaurant.

MONDAY  |  Distance: 10, 22 or 32 miles  |  Terrain: Intermediate or Easier | Yoder’s Guest House

Today features some of the most spectacular vistas of the trip, along with the one challenging climb. As the rail trail winds out of Potomac River valley toward the crest of the Eastern Continental Divide, you can see rolling mountains in all directions. The trail crosses the Mason-Dixon Line, which is a nice spot for a break. Then it’s on to the Big Savage Tunnel and the highest elevation of the tour. After cresting the divide, there’s a fun downhill roll into the historic town of Meyersdale. You can choose to ride the full 32 miles, ride a van to the very top of the climb or ride a van for one-half of the climb. Lunch is a picnic and dinner is at the inn.

TUESDAY  |  Distance: 0, 12 or 25 miles | Terrain: Easier | Yoder’s Guest House

Tuesday is a layover day, featuring a trip to the Flight 93 National Memorial and an optional 25-mile bike ride back to the GAP Trail. This National Park Service site honors the 40 passengers and crew lost on 9/11. We’ll have time to explore the visitor center, the newly opened Tower of Voices, the Wall of Names and the 40 Memorial Groves. Following the site visit, you can choose to cycle 12 miles to lunch or take the van to lunch in Berlin, PA. Then cycle or van back to the GAP Trail — featuring farm country views and mostly downhill, quiet roads back to the trail at Garrett and on to nearby Meyersdale.

WEDNESDAY  | Distance: 41 miles |  Terrain: Easier | Yough Plaza Motel

After a hearty breakfast at Yoder’s, we cycle along the rail trail into thicker forests and deeper river valleys. The Cassleman River joins the Youghiogheny in the town of Confluence, where the larger and deeper valley takes us away from small towns and into the Ohiopyle State Park. This is the area where George Washington fought for the British in the French and Indian War in the 1760s. The plunging waterfalls and soaring ridges remind you of why this was America’s Northwest Frontier in the late 1700s. Take your time along this stretch of trail and enjoy the views of the river far below before we roll into the town of Ohiopyle, where river rafting vies with bicycling as the main tourist draws. We’ll enjoy dinner at a pub followed by a night at the rustic Yough Plaza Motel, just steps from the trail.

THURSDAY  |  Distance: 46 miles  |  Terrain: Easier  | Bright Morning Bed and Breakfast

Rolling out of Ohiopyle, we continue through the State Park and pass across beautiful, historic rail trail bridges over the Youghiogheny rapids. We enjoy lunch in the first large town since Maryland — Connellsville, PA. The trail and river run right through the historic downtown. From there, rural farm country edges closer to the river and we see occasional small towns until we cycle into historic West Newton. Bright Morning Bed & Breakfast is a collection of four historic Colonial Era houses right beside the trail, and it’s a great location for our final evening together.

FRIDAY  |  Distance: 32 miles  |  Terrain: Easier  | Departure Day

We bike out of farm country by mid-morning and into suburbs and cycle through a recovering industrial area along the Youghiogheny. It joins the Monongahela in McKeesport, and ride along this majestic, ship-going section of the river. We stop in historic Homestead for lunch and then cross the famous Hot Metal Bridge into downtown Pittsburgh, arriving at the Point State Park and the end of the GAP Trail. Following your ride, we transfer you back to the Heinz History Center area, where it is a short transfer to many great Pittsburgh hotels, the Amtrak station and the airport.

Great Allegheny Passage Rail Trail (GAP Trail)

6-DAY / 5-NIGHT BIKE TOUR

Make your reservation with confidence. Your tour is completely 100% refundable up to 60 days of the tour date.

reserveMay 5-10, 2019: $1,795
Reserve with $300 deposit

reserveMay 12-17, 2019: $1,795 (SOLD OUT)
Reserve with $300 deposit

reserveMay 19-24, 2019: $1,795
Reserve with $300 deposit

reserveSeptember 15-20, 2019: $1,795
Reserve with $300 deposit

reserveSeptember 22-27, 2019: $1,795
Reserve with $300 deposit

reserveSept. 29-Oct.4, 2019: $1,795
Reserve with $300 deposit

Final payment due 60 days prior to your tour (personal check, Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover)

Single Supplement Fee: $250

Default Supplement Fee: $125*

*Single Traveler? We are the most affordable tour company for single travelers, and our policies and rates are the very best. Please see our single traveler policies.

Cancellations: If you cancel your tour reservation, your cancellation fee will be determined as follows:

  • If you cancel 60 or more days prior to the start of your tour, there is no cancellation fee.
  • If you cancel between 45 and 59 days prior to the start of your tour, you will forfeit 50% of all tour payments.
  • If you cancel between 0 and 44 days prior to the start of your tour, all tour payments will be forfeited.

 

INNS

The Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott is a gem and is perfectly situated near the C&O Canal, Downtown Cumberland and the Maryland Mountains.

fairfieldinn.com

Yoder’s Guest House, known for their delicious breakfasts, was built in 1901. This comfortable inn is in a perfect location to enjoy the sights of Meyersdale.

yodersguesthouse.com

Yough Plaza Motel is perfectly located in the middle of all the fun Ohiopyle spots. This great little place is super comfortable and has a great atmosphere.

youghplazamotel.com

Gracious and welcoming, the owners of Bright Morning B&B provide an opportunity for a relaxing stay in their comfortable and well-kept inn. The cozy, quaint rooms are individually decorated, all with private baths, and their breakfasts will have you ready for your ride!

brightmorningbb.com

What’s Included

5 nights lodging, 5 breakfasts, 5 dinners, 6 lunches, all gratuities for accommodations and meals, detailed maps and itineraries, experienced guides, full van support, hybrid bicycle, and helmet. Transfer from Pittsburgh at 10 a.m. on the first day of your tour and return to Pittsburgh by 4 p.m. on the last day of your tour. Airfare is not included.

FREE USE OF BIKES

Hybrid bikes are appropriate for this tour, and we are happy to provide you with a bike to use at no charge. Our bikes come equipped with a front handlebar bag, rear carrier, water bottle, mirror and flat pedals. Pedal cages and soft gel seat covers are available on request. We are also happy to put your own clipless pedals (pedals that attach to your biking shoes) and seat on your bike if you wish.

Great Allegheny Passage Rail Trail Photo Gallery