The Great Allegheny Passage – Bike Trip 2012

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Two days, 142 Miles – The GAP Trail – The Great Allegheny Passage

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Starting in the steel-side Pittsburgh, we began our Monday morning at mile marker 139. The cool day with the bright sun, and three days worth of our belongings on our bikes, made us feel free and unencumbered. My brother and his girlfriend would continue on through storms and high waters to get to D.C. by Friday to catch a train! Phil and I took half of a week to stop our bike trip in Cumberland, Maryland.

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We started out by crisscrossing railroad tracks, biking up to old bridges traveling over rivers, and came to the small working town of McKeesport where the trail weaved through the industrial town.

The recent rain had made a few places muddy, and we drove down one truckers alley-road before claiming the rest of the trail for bikes only.

We tried to break every 15 miles to stand away from our bikes, and grab a snack.

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We ate in Smithton for lunch, with 40 miles of the trail behind us at this point. Most things in town were closed except for this smoky bar where we were carded to verify that we were 18 !?

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By mid-afternoon, we had passed the quaint town of Boston and most of the 1950’s vinyl homes that were open to the trail. Connellsville was a town we passed through with beautiful community flower gardens, colorful in the median plantings that separated the bike trail from the car traffic.

We’d gone into the forest climb before Ohiopyle and it was now us, the trail and the river.

The trail, at this point, was also referred to as the Youghiogheny River Trail and was a difficult last 20 miles to finish up to our campsite for the night.

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Ah, but so worth it once we’d set up camp a quarter mile higher than the trail, trekked back down, and walked 1/2 a mile into town to enjoy a lovely dinner on a back porch. The sun was setting, we laughed and ate merrily having completed a long 68 miles of biking for the day.

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2 thoughts on “The Great Allegheny Passage – Bike Trip 2012

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