Sobriquet 98.1: Riding the Great Allegheny Passage and C & O Towpath, Part 1

 Earlier this month, my friend Danesh and I cycled from Pittsburgh to Washington, D.C. via the Great Allegheny Passage and C & O Towpath. Despite the fact that neither one of us is particularly averse to spur-of-the-moment adventuring, we decided to book a package through Bike the GAP, reasoning that, since neither of us had ever ridden the trails previously, it would be wiser to rely on the expertise of a highly-rated company than on our own wits for planning our first ride. In the end, I would say we made the right decision. Sara, the owner of Bike the GAP, we soon discovered, was well-known and highly-regarded all along the trail. In fact, she was so well-known that, at least among the small businesses in the trail communities, the mononym "Sara" often felt as noteworthy as Prince, Madonna, Elvis, Shaq, or Oprah. Everywhere we stopped, it seemed, restauranteurs and innkeepers knew of Sara, appreciated the business she sent their way, and expressed that gratitude by treating us like VIPs.

Because Danesh and I would be taking the Amtrak train to Pittsburgh from New York and returning to the New York area by train from Washington, we decided to save ourselves the headache of transporting our own bikes and rented a pair of hybrids that we could pick up at Golden Triangle Bike Rentals in Pittsburgh and return at Bike and Roll in Washington, D.C.'s L'Enfant Plaza. We ended up with two Felt Verza Paths, which proved to be fantastic. The bikes are sturdy without being unwieldy, roll through mud and puddles without feeling unsteady, and dampen vibrations without sacrificing too much speed.

Once we got our bikes set up, signed some last-minute paperwork, filled our water bottles, and slid into our respective chamois, we hit the trail. 


Popular Posts