Greater Allegheny Trail to Maryland – By Leah Gay

Hello everyone! Today was Day 9 of our adventure. We started at 8 a.m., earlier than any other day so far this summer. We had a 76-mile ride ahead of us, 70 of which were uphill, and we had a scheduled presentation to make at our next destination, so it was a good thing we were able to get a move-on so early.

We departed from Connellsville Church of God after a prayer with Pastor Confer among the breathtaking mountatins of Connellsville, Pa. Then we rode our last downhill stetch for 70 miles to where we started back on the Greater Allegheny Passage. Despite the challenge of the the entire trail climbing uphill until we reached the Continental Divide between the Gulf of Mexico Watershed and the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, the views along the Allegheny River were so refreshing and definitely worth the work. That being siad, the relief of the six-mile downhill stretch was definitely welcome!

We thought we were done with hills when we made it to Frostburg, Md. Then we all had to look UP the hill, one of the largest hills we’ve seen in the last week and a half, to Frostburg’s First Presbyterian Church, where we are staying tonight. It took a long time and we were REALLY stinky and tired by the time we made it, but it was worth it! When we arrived, Tom and Maxene swiftly guided us to Frostburg State Univeristy where Dave let us use the showers at their gym facility. Thank you SO MUCH, Tom, Maxene and Dave! We were all so overjoyed to get clean and comfortable for the amazing spaghetti dinner made for us by First Presbyterian’s congregation. They were so interested in learning about our cause and excited to share the housing rehabilitation projects they were working on in their community. Jane, one of the curch members, told us about an organization she’s starting called Neighborhood Friends Care, which shares many of the same principles as The Fuller Center, especially in regards to giving those helped opportunity to give back.

First Prebysterian is so generous to cook for us, listen to us, and let our bodies and bikes rest in their beautiful church. We need the rest for tomorrow’s 50-mile ride. It should be all downhill though!

I can’t wait to bike more of the gorgeous Greater Allegheny Passage tomorrow. Thanks for reading! Good night and God Bless! 

Click here to donate to Leah’s personal fundraising goal of $5,000!

You can check out Leah’s intro video on her previous blog! (Looking for a fresh video? Try here.)

Learn more about the Bike Adventure here.


  • Well done Bikers. We are proud of you and hope you continue to enjoy the experience with the mission of the bike event in view. We in Sierra Leone appreciate you. We know what hills and valleys truly mean whether on foot, on bike or in any form of transportation for that matter. OUR COUNTRY IS FULL OF HILLS and VALLEYS. A few members of our board were driving up and down hills and valleys today, trying to identify more land that will be needed in the near future to build homes for those in need. Thank you so much for fund raising on behalf of Fuller Center. We are with you in Spirit.

  • It looks like you enjoyed yourself on the G.A.P. I was on it myself between Aug 10th and Aug 14 of 2008. The last six miles to Cumberland were great. I hope that you didn’t have to share the last tunnel with a train. If it wasn’t for the fact that I’m too far away from you at the Mississippi River and heading the wrong direction, I would turn around to see if I could catch up with you and ride with you for a while. Good luck with the rest of your trip. Also, please tell Ryan that I enjoyed watching the video of his coloring technique. Take care, from the Cycling Rev

  • We enjoyed meeting all of you for your stay in Frostburg, Maryland, and learning more about the Fuller Center. That trek from the trailhead here into the town is brutal, but you made it! We even have one building on campus at Frostburg State where you enter on one side on the 1st floor but if you enter on the other side it’s the 3rd floor. Best wishes the rest of the way.


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