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C & O Towpath on a Touring Bike?

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C & O Towpath on a Touring Bike?

Old 03-16-03, 01:28 PM
Jungle Explorer
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C & O Towpath on a Touring Bike?

Will probably be riding the C & O in its entirety some time this spring or summer. Between a few websites and a search on this BB, I still have a few other questions that I'd like some help with:

1. Is there any recent beta available on towpath conditions? The NPS site's info. is dated 2000.

2. Is it possible to do this ride on a dedicated touring bike w/ 32mm tires or is the surface demanding of a MTB? Note: we'll be camping and self-supported, hence the desire for using the touring bikes.

3. Can anyone suggest a good mapset/guidebook?

4. Any advantage in riding from Mile 184 to Mile 0 (downhill!)?

5. Any good beer emporiums/microbreweries along the way?

6. Any other info. you can provide would be much appreciated!

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Old 03-16-03, 01:57 PM
Metal Cowgal
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Hi Braumeister

Our group is doing it early summer also, and many have already done it. I've done parts, but not the whole thing.

There are a couple of resources worth checking out.

THe C & O Companion (Mike High, I think)

Shay and Weil (check out their website.....you can find them using a keyword search of their names or by using the title "Freewheeling Easy") "Freewheeling Easy" is their resource about trails, etc. in the Western Pennsylvania area, although they also have a specific compendium dedicated to the C & O...It is only a couple of bucks and you can buy it on their website. They provide many good tips, including places to stay, eat, camp, etc.

They recommend starting at D.C.....claim it's a more scenic ride.

Regarding the touring bike/tire issue, others may have more reliable recommendations. The parts that I've ridden, I'd say you would be fine, but I haven't done the C & O in its entirity.

I'm happy to provide more information as I come across it since we're doing it in early June.

Mary Ann
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