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Linking Up
Planning Your Traffic-free Bicycle Trip between Pittsburgh PA and Washington DC

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The trails of the Allegheny Trail Alliance will connect with the C&O Canal Towpath at Cumberland, creating a traffic-free route between Pittsburgh and Washington DC. Although a few gaps in the trail won't be finished for another year or two, there's enough trail on the ground to make an outstanding bike trip.

The trails of the Allegheny Trail Alliance provide outstanding local recreation and one-day trips from home base. The special advantage of this long-distance system emerges when you decide to link some of these outings into a multi-day trip. This could be as simple as a weekend trip to a bed-and-breakfast and back or as complex as a week-long camping trek from Washington DC all the way to Pittsburgh.

Slice of topo map

To help you plan the classic trip between Pittsburgh and Washington -- or a shorter trip along this route -- we have brought together information that will help you plan your trip. These web pages are drawn from the book Linking Up: Planning Your Traffic-Free Bike Trip between Pittsburgh PA and Washington DC. You can order the book from the Allegheny Trail Alliance, 419 College Ave, Greensburg PA 15601 for $3.50 (includes postage) or from

  Frequently Asked Questions
Starting to Think About the Trip: The Four Big Decisions
Planning Checklist
Trail Surface, Terrain, and Equipment
Logistics: Getting People Where They Need to Be
What to Take
Distances Between Trailheads
Sample Itineraries
Shorter Trips
Directions for Road Detours around Trail Gaps
special directions for
Confluence-Ft Hill during summer 2000
Resource for Planning
Outfitters and Shuttle Services
Trail Name Abbreviations

For information on food, bike shops, camping, and indoor lodging on the ATA trails between Pittsburgh and Cumberland, see the list of amenities associated with the trail maps. For the C&O Canal, see the overview map.

You may also draw inspiration from trip reports by people who have already made and enjoyed the trip.

[Overview Map] [ATA Information] [Linking Up Home]

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This page is part of the Allegheny Trail Alliance's site in support of the Pittsburgh to Cumberland Trail, a motor-free recreational rail trail connecting Pittsburgh PA and Cumberland MD. Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000 by Allegheny Trail Alliance, Bill Metzger, Mary Shaw, and Roy Weil. Amenity information courtesy of FreeWheeling Easy. We encourage you to create links to this site and to print copies of the maps for your personal use. We prohibit other uses of this site, especially if they generate spam or other mass communications -- see our Privacy Policy.. This page was last modified on 09/03/00. Send email to ATA or contact the ATA or member trails.