Pavel preparing his gear on the eve of the 3 day adventure
My trusty ride all snug and warm in the hotel room, waiting for the trials and trails to come.
Pavel and I toured Cumberland on the evening prior to setting off. Heavy rain made us start to question if we were doing a wise thing.
Sheltering from the rain in a ornate store front.
Day 1 - Start
Ready to leave the hotel for a short ride to the trail start.
Riding around Cumberland it was still very wet from the downpour the night before.
C&O trail starts near the Western Maryland Railway Station.
Our hotel from the previous night, directly next to the C&O trail. Great place to stay.
Posing for the required "Start" picture. All clad in our wet weather gear. Paved surfaces were starting to dry but the trail is not paved so much spray and mud was to come our way on day 1.
Looking back towards downtown Cumberland I-68 dominates.
This was to become a regualr site, the canal basin with little to no water. To the left the muddy trail is clear. We spent a lot of energy to start with trying to dodge the puddles, both giving in to the inevitable as the day wore on.
The canal goes through varying terrain, with lots of geological interest. Here the canal was carved through rock that splintered easily.
Oldtown and Lock #70. Nice to see some sections of the canal watered.
Lock # 70
We head of the trail for lunch, crossing the Potomac River to grab a bite to eat in Paw Paw West Virginia
Looking west the Potomac River
The Paw Paw tunnel
The Paw Paw tunnel is over 3000 feet long. No lighting and a 5 foot wide towpath meant walking our bikes through.
The guard rail accompanied us through the tunnel. In places the groves from the ropes used to pull the barges through the tunnel can still be seen.
Posing for the tunnel exit shot, now who is holding the camera?
The towpath has been replaced at the tunnel exit with a boardwalk. Talk about bumpy. Much prefered the crush gravel trail.
The canal exits the Paw Paw tunnel into a narrow channel.