9/19/2010 8:29:53 PM
We did this trail in 2 parts over this weekend. We started in Hancock, which is central on the trail, rode the western 1/2 on Saturday and the eastern 1/2 on Sunday. This is a really beautiful trail. It's flat, so be prepared to pedal non-stop the entire distance. It is all asphalt, meticulously maintained and clean. It runs parallel to the C&O Canal Historic Towpath and there are many points where you can transition from one to the other if you wish. You'll see historical remnants all along the way. It was uncrowded and everyone we encountered was courteous and friendly. We enjoyed it immensely.
The town of Hancock is all about this trail and the cyclists that come to ride it. As a waitress in one of the diners where we ate told me, sadly, "it's all we have left". Hancock is a lovely little town with great charm and nice people, but has seen an economic downturn in recent years, losing their industry and their apple orchards, so they are very happy to have the business that cyclists bring to the area, and treat them accordingly.
We stayed on Saturday night at the America's Best Value Inn. We were disappointed in a lot of respects. It was run down, not very clean, there were many things in the room that were broken, no blankets, and for what it was we felt it was very overpriced. The sign outside says "rooms starting at $45" but we paid $78 for a basic room with 1 bed. The only thing I will say to recommend it is that they are extremely friendly to cyclists and don't seem to bat an eye if you want to take your bikes into the room with you. As a matter of a fact, most of the occupants seemed to be cyclists from the towpath. The pulled in in droves around dinner time.
The Park and Dine is a nice place for breakfast, extremely reasonable and they filled all our water bottles with ice cold water.
We plan to go back again before the season is over and do it again, all of it in a day this time. Well worth the drive.