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Follow Your Trail

Explore beautiful Mountain Maryland this fall.
By Allegany County Tourism

As the summer heat subsides and the leaves start to turn, there’s nowhere better to appreciate the spectacular sensations of fall than the mountainside of Allegany County, Maryland. Adventure is abundant along the county’s more than 200 miles of trails. Dive into dozens of outdoor recreational activities, travel back in time with scores of historic sights, or try a taste of world-class food and drink. Whatever adventures you seek this fall, Mountain Maryland has a trail for you.

Do you crave fresh air and stunning fall foliage? You’ve got to check out the Great Allegheny Passage. Named one of the ‘Top Fall Trips in the World’ by National Geographic, the trail starts in Cumberland and follows the route of the historic Western Maryland Railway up toward the Eastern Continental Divide. The 150 mile trail winds through Maryland’s mountains to connect with Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and travelers can catch majestic views across four states from the overlook outside the Big Savage Tunnel just over the Mason & Dixon Line. Grab your backpack, your bike, or even your skis when the snow begins to fall and get going – you won’t want to miss this.

If outdoor sports aren’t your thing, no worries – Mountain Maryland has trails for you too. Climb aboard the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad for a range of experiences on the rails, with astounding views, authentic coaches, and fun for the whole family. Or try Tracks and Yaks, Maryland’s only rail biking excursion, which will whisk you through lush hills and valleys on tandem or quad railbikes. If you’re more comfortable in the car, drive the three-hour, 45-mile, self-guided scenic overlooks tour of Green Ridge State Forest. Maryland’s largest contiguous forest is not so green this time of year, and you’ll be mesmerized by the tapestry of fall colors.

While losing yourself in Mountain Maryland’s natural splendor, take a tour through history along the C&O Canal Towpath. One of the most-visited National Parks in the U.S. last year, the nearly 200-mile canal connects the region’s towns, parks, and forests, as well as the Potomac River. Learn about local industry, transportation, and recreation dating back to the early 1800s at the Allegany Museum and Canal Place Heritage Park. Then take it for yourself — the 12-foot wide, nearly-level towpath is perfect for biking and hiking. Stop for self-guided tours of Cumberland and Frostburg, which will walk you through the history and culture of these charming trail towns.

Before, after, or amid your outdoor exploits, reward yourself with delicious treats along Mountain Maryland’s tastier trails. The Tap and Pour Tour was named ‘Best Beer/Wine/Spirits Trail’ in Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine’s 2021 ‘Best Of’ awards. Bask in the ambiance of outdoor gardens and patios at award-winning wineries, breweries, and distilleries, or take your favorites in a growler to go. For early birds, the irresistible offerings along the Donut and Coffee Trail will give you the sugar rush and caffeine buzz needed to knock out an early climb or a day of kayaking.

There’s something in the autumn air, something that drives us to get our, explore, and chase down adventure. Lots of places have incredible fall experiences. But if you’re looking to pursue your passions against a backdrop of sweeping mountain views and vibrant fall foliage, there’s only one place to go: Mountain Maryland.

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