Avoiding the Pennsylvania Turnpike: Sideling Hill

Deep road cut viewed from above makes traffic on the Interstate at its bottom look tiny in comparison
This 340-foot deep road cut features more than 800 feet of interestingly exposed geology.

Avoiding the Pennsylvania Turnpike affords one more than saving money; interesting sights and visitor opportunities abound, even in a big-rig RV.

One such place is Sideling Hill on Interstate 68 near Hancock, Maryland.  A picturesque  escape from, or entry to, northwestern Maryland, its geology is unique and easily approachable from the Welcome Center. Stopping on the highway for exploration is not allowed. So put those walking shoes on, deploy your trek sticks and prepare for a pedestrian bridge crossing and a couple dozen steps, or so.

A floor-to-ceiling brown metal spiral features white text depicting a geological evolutionary timeline
A geological timeline stretches from floor to ceiling in the Welcome Center.

Now a welcome center, the site used to house a an exhibition center. Discover geological specimens from the center at the Hancock Museum, 14-miles east, at 42 West Main Street, Hancock, MD 21750.

Call before visiting, a recommendation due to volunteer staffing, 301-678-6236 or 301-678-6308. Also, they never responded to a request for RV parking information, so one might be better off driving the towed into town from the rest area.

Parking Information:

At Sideling Hill, there are a few RV spaces, but enter slowly and plan your exit before committing to a spot.

Bonus: The Western Maryland Rail Trail is just steps away from the museum.

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