I'll be visiting Leesburg, VA for a week or so in June 2014 and I'm looking to combine that with a good bicycle ride thru the area close by. I'd like to plan for endpoints that are at Amtrak stations. I leave from Atlanta GA. I'm considering taking Amtrak from Atlanta to Cleveland. Then bicycle down the towpath trail to around Dover, ride over to Pittsburg and get on the Great Allegheny trail where I'll ride down the Leesburg and visit family for a few days. Then I'll continue down the same trail to Washington where I'll get on the train and ride home.
Who knows about the quality of these trails? I'll have a loaded Surly disc trucker. I'd like to plan on not riding with knobbies. Is it real packed down gravel where that's expected to be OK?
I'll be mostly camping along the way. Probably trying to stealth camp some, but I'll stay in an occasional motel and gladly stay at established campgrounds should they be convenient.
The train gets into Cleveland at 3 a.m. I'm pondering the best strategy for starting the trip like that. I might want to kill some time and then go check into a motel, spend the night there, leave the following morning on the bicycle. Hotels are expensive around there. I see some hostel opportunities and want to hear from anybody with some first hand experience there.
This is the route I've got roughed out. https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid...5caae7ce&msa=0
I can extend it by a couple hundred miles and still fit into the calendar timeframe I'm planning on. So if anybody knows this area and sees how to improve the route I'd be glad to hear from you. I love natural beauty.
Thanks for any suggestions.