Final Thoughts and Lessons Learned - Throwback Tour Day: 2004 C&O Canal Anniversary Through Ride - CycleBlaze

Final Thoughts and Lessons Learned

A mountain bike is probably the best choice for a loaded ride on the Towpath– hybrid tires are just too skinny and the rims too vulnerable. A suspended bike is a great idea for any casual cyclist. We should have done a few 50-mile road rides to get our behinds and willpower up to those long rides. Carry a long stroke pump – the little wimpy one I carried was torture to use and you will need to use a pump. Plan on getting at least a little bit wet, no matter how dry it has been.

Bottom Line: We had a fantastic time – it was a memorable way to spend our tenth anniversary. Sixty miles per day is kinda pushing it, given how rough the Towpath surface can be but it is doable with minimal pain. Doing it in November meant we lost a few hours of daylight, and couldn’t really stop to see the sights. The next challenge will be doing the Allegheny Trail from Cumberland to Pittsburgh, but it appears it will be a few years before that is competed. 

Update: the GAP was completed years ago and we have done it several times – see our other CycleBlaze journal “A Plethora of Baby Boomers Partial and Piecemeal Pedal of the Great Allegheny Passage Trail.” While I love the C&O Canal Towpath, if I could only choose one multi-day ride I would choose the GAP every time.

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