The greater Philadelphia area is home to Circuit Trails, a vast regional network of hundreds of miles of multi-use trails. This expansive trail network provides endless opportunities for recreation and transportation. Almost half of the kilometers covered by the Philadelphia Alternative are covered along the Allegheny Great Passage (GAP) and the C&O Canal Trail. These trails have a maximum slope of 1.5%, and you'll find yourself passing through small towns, forests, and watercourses.
On the C&O trail, cyclists and hikers must give way to horses and mules. As you leave the C&O, you'll encounter some hills and a big climb up and down the top of Blue Ridge, southwest of Gettysburg. The terrain then becomes undulating and flatter as you reach the Atlantic coast. The Indiana tour takes place on flat or rolling terrain that originally supported the tall grass prairie ecosystem.
Ohio's climate is varied due to its terrain. The southern half of the state receives more frequent rainstorms that result in greater total rainfall. Section 2 of the alternate bike route from Chicago to New York begins in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and ends in Battery Park, in downtown New York City. The WMSR shares the Brush Tunnel tunnel and GAP cyclists are advised not to be in the tunnel when there is a train in it or when they approach the tunnel.