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The Western Maryland Rail Trail follows the path of history. From the days of the Native American centuries ago to the interstate highways of today, the Potomac River valley has always been an important transportation corridor.

The National Road, the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal, and the Baltimore and Ohio and Western Maryland Railroads made use of the Potomac River's route through the mountains. The historic town of Hancock, strategically located at the foot of the Appalachians, has offered hospitality to travelers since colonists first started moving west. And don’t forget Hancock's Civil War heritage, to the C&O Canal; as well as the nearby attractions of the Fort Frederick (a restored 1756 French and Indian War fortress), the historic Woodmont Rod & Gun Club, and the Sideling Hill Exhibit Center. Newly placed Civil War Heritage Trail markers and kiosks will serve to enhance your visit.

The C&O Canal has always provided recreational opportunities for hikers, bikers and horseback riders along the famous Cumberland to Georgetown towpath, but Hancock now provides the additional resource of the Western Maryland Rail Trail. These 20-plus miles of paved trail are perfect for biking, inline skating, walking or running, and you can access the center of this Trail at the Hancock Station Parking Area just off Main Street.

When in the Hancock region, plan on staying a little longer next time and enjoy the uniqueness of this small, historic, and welcoming town. And please visit the Hancock Chamber of Commerce’s web site for a complete listing of businesses, recreational opportunities, and special events that are available in our immediate area: http://www.hancockmaryland.com.