Welcome to the Western Maryland Rail Trail (WMRT), an asphalt paved path that was reclaimed from the former Western Maryland Railroad and is maintained by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Download a map of the trail here.
The WMRT is a 20+ mile trail that follows the bends and curves of both the C&O Canal and the Potomac River. The WMRT is perfect for hiking, biking, inline skating (roller blading) or, weather permitting, crosscountry skiing. And it's handicap accessible. From Hancock, Maryland, the trail travels 10 miles to the east to about 1/2 mile from Fort Frederick State Park, and another ten miles to the west to Polly's Pond (a small body of water where canal boats would winter). The trail is especially suited to families, novice cyclists (it's almost completely flat), and for anyone seeking a pleasant, leisurely ride.
The section from Fort Frederick opened in 1998, and the western route provided an additional ten miles in 2002. Crossovers to the C & O Canal will be found at mile markers 117 and 119 and at the Hancock Station parking area.
The trail is open year round and offers ample parking at the Hancock Station, just off Main Street in the historic town of Hancock.
Area Information contact:
Hancock Chamber of Commerce
126 W. High Street
Hancock, MD 21750
Contact Information on the WMRT:
Western Maryland Rail Trail
c/o Fort Frederick State Park
11100 Fort Frederick Road
Big Pool, MD, 21711
Bring the family! The trail is perfect for all ages and interests.
The town of Hancock offers ample parking, dining and just about anything else recreational ethusiants might need. You might want to start early and ride 1/2 of the trail til Noon, have lunch at one of the local restaurants (recreational wear is always welcome). Then spend the remainder of the afternoon riding the 2nd half.
Or plan to spend the weekend. Ride the eastern half of the trail on Saturday, and perhaps tour Fort Frederick while you're there. Spend a relaxing evening at one of Hancock's fine local hotels, lodges or Bed & Breakfasts. On Sunday you can complete the western half of the trail. Lunchables are available at local establishments so you'll be able to pack n ride!
Specialty shops are springing up on the recently revitalized Main Street to serve the needs and interests of travelers and area residents. Known statewide and beyond for the Town’s many restaurants, Hancock continues to be a favorite stop for travelers in the region.
The re-watered section of the C&O Canal in the Town limits provides the visitor with an appreciation of what the Canal looked like while in operation. It also complements the fishing opportunities that exist at the Potomac River Boat Ramp, providing some of the best bass fishing on this section of the River.
So there's plenty to do for a day, weekend or more! You'll find Hancock the perfect place to "dock" for your trip on the Western Maryland Rail Trail!