The Great Allegheny Passage (GAP): Maryland Section
ElevationAscent: 2,152' 656 m
Descent: -525' -160 m
High: 2,248' 685 m
Low: 621' 189 m
GradeAvg Grade: 2% (1°)
Max Grade: 9% (5°)
Popular rides nearby
Lakeside Loop Trail
5.5 mi 8.8 km • Loop • 165 ft Ascent 50.25 m Ascent
5.7 mi 9.2 km • Loop • 773 ft Ascent 235.48 m Ascent
Boy Scout Loop
1.3 mi 2.1 km • Loop • 140 ft Ascent 42.79 m Ascent
Cacapon Big Loop
11.1 mi 17.9 km • Loop • 1,043 ft Ascent 317.85 m Ascent
Deep Creek Loop
8.1 mi 13.1 km • Loop • 663 ft Ascent 201.99 m Ascent
Circle of Jones Mill Run Valley
14.7 mi 23.7 km • Loop • 1,474 ft Ascent 449.28 m Ascent
“A scenic climb up the Allegheny Mountains on a traditional rail trail.”— Cheryl Ladota
The trail surface is a combination of crushed limestone and asphalt that runs over valleys, through mountains, and alongside rivers, while also navigating tunnels, bridges and viaducts. You'll cross the Cumberland Narrows, the Mason-Dixon Line, and the Eastern Continental Divide.
The ride through Maryland is a gradual climb up the mountain, so if you are only going one-way, catch the scenic railroad so you can either ride uphill or down.
Leaving from Cumberland, you'll climb up the mountains to the Mason-Dixon Line. It is a slow, steady climb, but it can test your endurance, particularly early on during the ride. The scenery is fantastic any time of year and the trail is well maintained. It is very popular on the weekends from spring to fall, so you are likely to see bikers, walkers, runners, dog walkers, thru-hikers, and thru-bikers.
Some of the major points of interest include:
Mile 0: Canal Place - site of the visitor center, bike shop, and plenty of eateries.
Miles 0-2: Paved trail that cross the rail lines numerous times. Keep an eye out for Lovers Leap as you ride through the Narrows.
Mile 2: The Route 40 Bridge - the trail surface switches to gravel and you begin the steady climb to Mile 4.
Mile 4: Bone Cave - bones of a Pleistocene cave bear and a saber-tooth tiger were found here.
Mile 5: Helmstetters Curve - a sweeping 180-degree horseshoe curve.
Mile 6: Brush Tunnel - a short concrete tunnel that riders share with the Scenic Railroad.
Mile 7-8: In springtime, the mountainside is abloom with forsythia and rhododendron.
Mile 14: The train tracks branch off and up into the mountains.
Mile 15: Frostburg - another trailhead with a great trail town. You can ride a switchback up the hill to the train depot and watch the cool turntable.
Mile 17.5: Borden Tunnel - this is a 957-foot unlighted tunnel. Don't be fooled, it gets pitch black once you reach the center, so be careful, especially on a crowded day.
Mile 20.5: Mason-Dixon Line - the end of the Maryland segment. If you have it in you, continue on to the next two stops.
Mile 22: Big Savage Tunnel - this tunnel cuts 3,300 feet through the mountain (closed in winter).
Mile 23.5: Eastern Continental Divide - this site is 2,392 feet above sea level and offers fantastic views.
Biked this trail?
We need help with the following missing trail information:
Family Friendly, ADA Accessible, Electic Mountain Bikes Allowed
Local Club: Allegheny Trail Alliance