Yesterday (Sat) while making our way down Rte 51 to Elizabeth PA, a guy in a van stopped us. He'd heard about us and suggested we take the Rails to Trails hiking path from Pittsburgh to Washington DC. It wasn't the first time I'd heard about it but since our mission is about awareness & education, I never seriously considered it. Afterall, this isn't a nature walk we're on.
He made the case that not only are there a ton of people on it this time of year but lots of cities lie on its path, too. So I gave it a hard look and consulted with a few knowledgeable about it.
In many ways its ideal for us. (1) It's a fairly direct route to Leesburg VA which is our next major stop and (2) As it is basically a converted railroad line, the grade of the hiking trail never exceeds 2% despite that it starts at 850 feet, climbs to over 3,200, and back down to sea level in DC.
Third and most importantly - no cars! Like some live version of Frogger the Video Game, we've been battling traffic for the past 1,300 miles and honestly, we could use a break.
Tuesday, we'll start back in Elizabeth PA, continue down Hwy 51 to Cedar Creek Park where we'll pick up the first leg of the Trail called The Great Allegheny Passage. This stretch is approximately 150 miles and ends in Cumberland, MD where we will connect with the old C&O Canal that'll take us right to Leesburg VA.
We have big plans for the area and can't wait to get there!
If you'd like to meet up with us at any point of our travels from Pittsburgh to DC, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and she'll tell you our exact location.