Washington, DC

The C&O Canal Trail

The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Trail is a 184 mile (!) tow path that runs along the Potomac River all the way to Cumberland, MD. Very flat, crushed stone surface. The C&O is accessible from Rock Creek Park, and is also one of the best running options if you are staying in the Georgetown area.  Choose any distance you like. The Closest D.C. start point is at the Georgetown Visitor Center at Wisconsin and M Streets.
The path is mainly on the DC/Maryland (northeast) side. Some good distances, from Georgetown, heading north, paralleling the Clara Burton Parkway (see map):
  • 5.0 miles one way:   Georgetown Visitor Center to Lock 5, just over the Maryland border
  • 10.0 miles one way: Georgetown Visitor Center to Billy Goat Trail C, near Carderock
  • 15.0 miles one way:  Visitor Center to just north of the Great Falls Tavern  Visitor Center

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  3. The capital crescent trail parallels c&o from georgetown, then turns northeast and ends near the top of rock Creek park. The path is 95% paved and about 10 miles long.

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Essentials
  • Various Options -- See table
  • Closest D.C. start point is at the Georgetown Visitor Center at Wisconsin and M Streets.
  • Closest D.C. start point is at the Georgetown Visitor Center at Wisconsin and M Streets.