• Historic Shot of Canal Boat on the Canal

    Chesapeake & Ohio Canal

    National Historical Park DC,MD,WV

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  • Towpath Reroute!

    6/14/14- Towpath breach at MM 106, just below Dam #5. Towpath Detour in place (this detour does not leave park property). Please be aware of possible towpath hazards due to heavy rains.

  • Water Pump Handles Temporarily Removed

    Purslane Run, Stickpile, Evitts Creek Hiker-Biker Campgrounds and Paw Paw Campground water pump handles have been removed due to bad water samples. Handles will be installed when good water samples are received.

  • Parking Lot Closure

    CSX is now beginning a phase of their bridge project that requires the closure of the Lock 74 parking lot for approximatly 18 months. Access to visitor parking near Lock 75 is now re-opened with a gravel parking lot at the site.

  • Boat Rides at Great Falls

    Regularly scheduled tour times for the mule-drawn canal boat at Great Falls have changed. In July and August 2014 tours will be offered Saturdays and Sundays at 11:00, 1:30 and 3:00. Please call the Visitor Center for more info: 301-767-3714. More »

Be A Junior Ranger

Jr. Ranger Patch

NPS photo

Hi, kids! Welcome to the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park. We know that's a mouthful, so just call it the C&O Canal for short.

We are glad you want to become a Junior Ranger. Rangers want to protect plants, wildlife (like turtles and birds) and keep our water clean. Junior Rangers also want to protect historic features so those who come after us can also enjoy them.

The C&O Canal is a historical treasure filled with many wonderful resources. We hope you will explore this national park and unlock the treasures that are waiting to be discovered. You can learn about nature, geology, history and man-made structures by using this booklet as a guide.

Junior Rangers are special people because they have decided to take an active role in the National Park Service Mission, "to preserve and protect our natural, cultural and recreational resources for this and future generations."

Did You Know?

Photo upstream entrance Paw Paw Tunnel.

The Paw Paw Tunnel is 3,118 feet long and is lined with almost six million bricks. The 2/3 mile long tunnel saved the canal builders almost six miles of construction along the Paw Paw bends of the Potomac River. The project took twelve years to complete. The tunnel was only wide enough for single lane traffic. More...