HABPI
Healthy Adams Bicycle Pedestrian Inc

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Grand History Trail

What is it?

The Grand History Trail is a proposed 250+ mile off-road trail connecting Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. Stops on the trail include Washington D.C., Annapolis, Baltimore, Fells Point, York, Gettysburg, Frederick, Antietam Battlefield, and Harper's Ferry. Existing trails comprise over half the Grand History Trail. Approximately two thirds of the trail exists or is planned but Adams County only has on-road components of the GHT. HABPI is submitting a grant application to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to fund a trail feasibility study to analyze possible off-road routes between Gettysburg and Emmitsburg, MD. Here is a map of the study area.

Why create it?

For health, wealth, joy, and history-

  • Health: Residents and tourists can enjoy health benefits of walking and bicycling on local trails that are part of the GHT.
  • Wealth: Many travelers plan vacations where trails take them to interesting and historical places. Bikers, walkers and joggers bring millions of dollars of revenue to businesses and towns along good trails with no damage to the environment.
  • Joy: People enjoy walking, talking, bicycling, and jogging on off-road trails like rail trails. They feel good and are friendly to others on the trail.
  • History: The area for the GHT is rich in history and it just makes good sense to connect these places with a trail that promotes tourism while reducing pollution.

    Who is working on it?


  • Meetings have been held with state officials from Pennsylvania and Maryland and officials from Washington D.C., under the auspices of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.
  • Trail and bicycle advocacy groups have been involved in the meetings and are working with local and state officials to facilitate development of the GHT.
  • County and local government officials are working to plan and develop trails which will be part of the GHT.
  • A group of riders from York, PA rode the entire loop in September 2015 and met with government officials along the way.

  • Here is an overview map of the GHT route with information on the back about what, why, and who.

    Here is a 30-page "Vision for the Grand History Trail" put together by the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.

    More information can be found at this website.

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