Round Bottom Camping Area at Slush Run is a free camping area directly on the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) Trail around Mile 99 (East of West Newton roughly 15 miles). For those not familiar with the GAP Trail, it is a Rails-to-Trails initiative that travels from Pittsburgh, PA to Cumberland, MD…meandering through numerous Trail Towns that were former thriving railroad towns at the end of the 1800's.
Round Bottom Camping Area at Slush Run can only be accessed by the GAP Trail, which means on foot or bicycle…or paddlers on the Youghioheny River. Being positioned directly off the GAP Trail grants easy access to those traveling the trail.
- Raised Tent pads (4)
- Vault Toilet
- Adirondack Shelters (2)
- Picnic tables
No potable water…there is hand pump but the water was discolored. It is a short walk down a trail to the river's edge, where I filtered water for drinking.
There is plenty of grassy area for scores of tents in this area. So if you are not fortunate enough to secure one of the two Shelters or tent pads, you can still set up a tent in the nicely mowed areas, which are still level.
We were bikepacking the GAP Trail east from Pittsburgh and arrived on a Sunday evening mid-June. We secured the only open Adirondack Shelter and were able to set up our tent inside, along with keeping our bicycles inside and out of the elements. Which made it wonderfully convenient when it started to rain. Sites and shelters are first come, first served.
Usually the vault toilets along this trail are clean, maintained and stocked…but on this visit, piles of trash were inside likely from an overly busy weekend.
The only negative was the train traffic on the opposite side of the River…it is loud when they rumble through. If you don't sleep with ear-plugs, you will wish you had.
Bicycle traffic was fairly light during the week, so not only did you have the GAP Trail mostly to oneself, the camping areas were either sparsely filled or empty. Although, things just did start opening up from the Covid-19 shutdown.
Apart from the train noise during sleeping hours, Round Bottom Camping Area is very peaceful and though you can still visually see the GAP Trail, you are not disturbed by passing cyclists.