I am moving to the Washington DC area and will be working in Bethesda at the NIH. It looks like living in/near Georgetown and commuting out on the Capital Crescent Trail could be really nice. I was curious what the path conditions are like (e.g., potholes, speed bumps, road crossings, and bike/jogger/car traffic). I would also be interested in other areas that would provide a nice sub 10 mile bike commute to Bethesda.
I commuted often on this trail for awhile and loved it.
Most of the trail is free of vehicle traffic and has bridges going over roads. It's a heavily shaded trail that can provide a nice respite from the sun during the hot summer. Potholes are minimal, though minor cracks from tree roots are not uncommon. Also, there can be quite a bit of debris on the trail after a good wind storm.
Not too far out of the city the path has a wooden ramp, in good condition, that last about 50 yards.
During the commuting hours, foot traffic exists, but I remember going at a pretty good rate with no issues.
There are a couple poorly lit tunnels, so you will want a bike light.