Biking the GAP Trail in Pennsylvania
Updated: Mar 7, 2022
The Greater Allegheny Passage is one of those iconic rail trails that is on most bicyclists' to do list.
1. Columbus East/Buckeye Lake KOA
On our way to Pennsylvania, we stopped at Buckeye Lake KOA. This campground was fine for a couple nights stay. The sites were fairly close together, but it was shady and very near the Lake.
TJ Evans Bike Path
Very nice bike path, paved and crushed gravel, that begins in Granville and goes to Johnstown. Granville is a very cute, little town with plenty of places to grab a bite or a beer after the ride.
Blackhand Gorge Nature Preserve
We went for a nice run in this Preserve. The path is paved, just over 4 miles long and runs through a gorge and sandstone formations. The woods are absolutely stunning. The Preserve has a couple hiking only trails that branch off from the main paved trail.
2. Uniontown KOA (actually in Adelaide and closer to Connellsville than Uniontown)
Great campground, right on the Youghiogheny River and the GAP (Greater Allegheny Passage) Bike trail. The campground is able to arrange kayak, canoe and float trips. There are also two very nice pools at the campground. In the evening a guy from the local bakery comes through the campground selling cookies and pies out of the back of his car. So good!
The GAP trail
The GAP trail runs 150 miles from Cumberland, MD to Pittsburgh, PA. The trail skirts along three different rivers, the Casselman, Youghiogheny, and Monongaleha, has stunning bridges/walkways across valleys and winds around mountains. The trail crosses the Eastern continental divide and the Mason Dixon Line and winds its way through Ohiopyle State Park.
We enjoyed this trail so much. On the first day we arrived, we rode 10 miles north towards Pittsburgh. While this was along the river, shaded and scenic, it was probably our least favorite part of the trail that we rode. This gives you a clue as to how great other segments of the trail are.
The next day we rode 43 miles (roundtrip) from the Campground in Adelaide to Ohiopyle. Ohiopyle is a great little town known for its white water rafting and natural slides in the Youghiogheny River. There are many places along the way to pull over and cool off in the river. We had chicken salad sandwiches at the Ohiopyle Cafe.
The next day we drove to Rockwood and biked to the Savage Tunnel - 44 miles roundtrip.On the other side of the tunnel there are amazing views of the Cumberland Valley. This segment of the trail is fantastic. There are several very long bridges with really awesome views of the valleys. This was my favorite ride on the GAP.
On our fourth day of riding, we rode from Ohiopyle to Confluence - 22 miles roundtrip. This section was mostly in the Ohiopyle State Park and was very shady. Beautiful, lovely woods. We ate at the Fall City Pub once we got back to Ohiopyle. Really good food and drink!