Trail Conditin -
Astrid from San Francisco on 08/09/2020 01:08 PM
I'm planning a solo east (Weldon Spring) to west(Lee's Summit) trip from August 14 to 17. I'd like to ask folks who have ridden the trail recently.
1. water source
I've ridden a couple times around St. Charles since June. Yet, looks like the state/city shut down water fountain in parks due to covid. I wonder if this is true alone the way.
2. MM116-118 (Portland)
The advisory map showed this 2 miles section is closed due to rock fall and no detour (officially). However, it seems I can go to MO94 and come back to the trail at some point. MO94 doesn't look too bad on google street map(I'm used to ride with traffic, well-trained SF cyclist, LOL). Any recommendation/correction is appreciated.
3. Pleasant Hill to Lee's Summit
Looks like RIS is extending this part but hard to tell progress. Any recommendation is appreciated, otherwise I'll just go with google.
Many thanks, Happy trail!
Doug from Bluffton on 08/09/2020 02:18 PM
Astrid you are correct about getting around the rock slide west of Portland. When you go under Hwy 94 bridge just take gravel road and loop to your right up onto 94 then right and go about 1 mile to first gravel road on right and over to trail and then left. Depending on time of day traffic is not terrible and visibility pretty good.
Mark from Lee's Summit on 08/09/2020 05:52 PM
Answering your third question, the Rock Island Trail is going to be extended between Pleasant Hill and Lee's Summit in stages over the next 5 to 6 years. I just posted about my recommended route (in the post right before yours) that follows the route with the least amount of traffic. There are at least 4 other routes that people have used, but it is important to know that there is a very active quarry with large dump trucks that operates just north of Pleasant Hill. If you are very used to on road two lane rural cycling, then it isn't a big deal, but if you prefer mostly light traffic, trails, and striped shoulders, then I would go with the route that I posted. You will just have to follow the directions that I posted in reverse.
Astrid from San Francisco on 08/09/2020 09:23 PM
Thanks Doug and Mark for detailed routes! :)
Anonymous on 08/10/2020 10:09 AM
Webb City MO
Tyler Ferguson from Bloomington, IN on 08/10/2020 09:38 PM
Has the trail closure between Boonville and Rocheport been fixed yet? Or do you still need to get on the highway for a detour?
School House B&B in Rocheport -
Tom M. from St Charles, Mo on 08/10/2020 02:04 PM
I highly recommend Schoolhouse B and B if your laying over in Rocheport while riding the Trail. They offer a great pleasant experience at a nice range of options, levels and rates.
Great food and knowledge of the area too
Pilot Grove to Machens and back in late October questions. -
Jacob from Tuttle on 08/09/2020 07:50 PM
Planing to go late October and was curious to know how busy it was around that time? I'm assuming all campgrounds would still be open around then as I plan on tent camping. Any thoughts or tips would be appreciate it.
Jacob from Tuttle on 08/09/2020 07:59 PM
and is it safe to leave my car parked at the pilot grove trailhead for say 5 days
BikerBoy from Maryville, IL on 08/10/2020 12:31 PM
The first week of October is one of my favorite times to ride. The leaves will probably not have started changing by then, but the air is crisp with low humidity -- perfect for biking. Pilot Grove is a wonderful small farming town. Very laid-back and safe. I would just make sure the police department (or Cooper County Sheriff) knows that you are leaving your car there, so it doesn't get towed. You could also talk to Jerry at the Katy B&B across the street to get his opinion. He was a former policeman.
Campgrounds have all still been open in October when I have ridden in years past. But best to check first since nothing is normal in 2020!
If we get a lot of rain, you might plan on ending in St. Charles, as the rest of the trail to Machens would be impassable.
Amtrak to katy Trail -
Steve Roehr from St Charles, Mo on 06/25/2019 07:48 PM
I'm thinking about taking an Amtrak from St Louis to the Kansas City, then biking back St Charles. Any recommendations for getting from the Kansas City amtrak to the katy Trail. Or other options to consider? Thanks!
Jerry Whittle from Belleville IL on 06/26/2019 03:02 PM
I recommend taking Amtrak to Sedalia Missouri instead. You would be minutes from the Katy Trail. Hermann or Jefferson City Missouri would be an even shorter options.
Sharonbikes from Kansas City on 06/26/2019 06:54 PM
I agree - ride the train to Sedalia. Amtrak goes right by the depot in Pleasant Hill, but the train does not stop there. Also - not sure when you are planning to go, but the flooding has meant Amtrak hasn't always been running. The tracks have been flooded and when that happens, they put people on a bus - don't think they will allow bikes on the chartered bus. The train was running again last week, but I saw today that service was suspended again.
Amber from Dallas, TX on 06/29/2019 06:54 PM
Missouri native here and have done the Amtrak from STL to Sedalia and spent a week riding the trail back, staying at BnBs at the wine towns along the way. Have been anxiously awaiting the opening of the additional trail from KC as well so I can officially ride from one end of the state to the other. Planning to do this in September. Any thoughts from the locals in the know about the outlook for when the trail will be restored from the flooding this year? Also looking for someone's input who has traversed from KC Amtrak station to trail head.
Michael from mountains from London on 06/30/2019 01:56 AM
When in September are you riding? We plan to start 26 September from Sedalia to St Charles over six days. All the posts here and the information available indicate that no-one is sure what the conditions will be. I've spoken to a couple of the guys who rent out bikes and who also organise tours. They are optimistic and are planning for their tours to go ahead in mid-September. I guess they would say that, wouldn't they? But then, they think the trail will get fixed quickly - but that quickly? I see from a news site that the water levels went UP again recently at Jefferson City. We are holding our nerve and sticking with our bookings, but also have a plan B to cycle the trail west of Boonville and up to KC on the Rock Island. Michael
(ps sorry, can't help with your question about a route from KC Station to trailhead; but last year we cycled east out through suburban and central Syracuse on the Erie Canal Trail and back westwards. Lots of sites said how difficult it was, but we found it just took some navigation. I have also seen references to routes from KC Station to trailhead on this site; good luck!).
Mark from Lee's Summit on 06/30/2019 09:41 PM
There is an Amtrak station in Lee's Summit which is closer to the Rock Island Connection to the Katy Trail, but there is also an Amtrak station near Downtown Kansas City which would get you closer to the Kansas state line if that is a big goal. People have mapped out the shortest routes if you don't mind driving in traffic or I have even mapped out the routes that use mostly trails and bike lanes. If you give more specifics on what you are looking for, I would be happy to give you some options. I also mapped out a scenic route from the Katy Trail into Downtown St. Louis that used mostly trails and bike lanes because I enjoy combining the city riding with the more rural Katy Trail in the middle.
The dams upriver are going to continue to release lots of water through August so you will just have to check on conditions through the summer. The trail will get fixed quickly and businesses will continue to offer shuttles around the closed areas if needed.
Amber from Dallas, TX on 07/09/2019 08:04 PM
Michael and Mark, Thanks for your insights. I'll just keep my eye on this sight, but won't hold my breath. Might just be a ride for next year. Might work better anyway since I'll be turning the big 5-0 and will be looking forward to the challenge.
Michael from Mountains from London, England on 07/10/2019 07:59 AM
The big 5-0! I vaguely remember it. I'm passing the big 7-0 this summer so I need to cycle to keep old bones moving.
As you say, it's 'watch this space' for updates on the Trail.
Joe from Wildwood on 08/08/2020 09:01 PM
Looking for safe route from Lees Summit Amtrak to Pleasant Hill trailhead
Kim Henderson - Kim's Cabins from Windsor on 08/09/2020 02:58 AM
A friend gave me this to tell folks...
Take the 13.6 mile route through Greenwood Missouri. BUT stay south on Allendale Rd. Follow that road till 175th St. It will change names a few times. Turn left or East on 175th. That will take you straight to Pleasant Hill. Cross the tracks and turn right onto the trail. That will take you to Pleasant Hill and on your way East to Windsor.
I've rode this route 100s of times. I feel it is the safest way there
Mark from Lee's Summit on 08/09/2020 10:10 AM
If you are looking for the least amount of traffic, then I would use this route (it uses the most trails and roads where Lee's Summit has striped off a 3' shoulder area...it isn't really a full bike lane, but it helps and lots of people bike these striped routes): Leave the Amtrak station by going NORTH on Main Street. Main Street curves to the left and becomes O'Brien Road. Take O'Brien for about a mile over the highway and then turn left onto Murray Road where the road ends. Take Murray Road for 1 mile south across 3rd Street to where it ends at Longview Road (ride the striped shoulder or use the sidewalk), and then cross Longview Road and turn left onto the wide sidewalk trail on the other (south) side of the street. Take the trail for 1/4 mile east on Longview and then turn right as the wide paved trail continues south along Ward Road. Take the trail south along Ward for 3.5 miles until you reach MO 150 where you will cross the road and turn left along the sidewalk. Go east along the MO 150 south side sidewalk for about 1.25 miles where eventually you will have to use the wide shoulder to get across the 291 Highway interchange.
Now you have to make a choice to either ride for 1/2 mile along the busy two lane 150 Hwy. with no shoulders or turn right and take the east 291 outer road which has almost no traffic. If you take the outer road, you will add another mile because of all the looping back that you will have to do inside the subdivisions.
If you look on a map, you will see that you are trying to get to Doc Henry Road/Cherokee Drive/20th Avenue/Allendale Drive and finally South Allendale Lake Road. The key is to weave through the subdivisions to get to South Allendale Lake Road which has a nice paved trail heading south.
You will take South Allendale Lake Road for 2 miles south where you will turn left onto County Road which eventually weaves around becoming 167th Street, Groll Road, 171st Street, and then South Gray Drive (1 mile total)...finally turn left (eastward) onto 175th Street for 3 miles until you reach the trail which is right past the railroad tracks. Turn right onto the trail and into Pleasant Hill.
Joe from Wildwood on 08/09/2020 01:08 PM
Thank you both for the information.
Joe from Wildwood on 08/09/2020 01:08 PM
Thank you both for the information.
Closures between Hermann and Treloar -
Hank on 08/02/2020 09:26 AM
Huge rains on Friday July 31 hit this section of trail hard. MDNR notes the section from MM 93.5 to 92.00 closed due to storm debris. Treloar was flooded and water was a foot or more over the trail at times. I haven't seen any detailed reports but wanted to give a heads-up here.
Perry from OFallon, mo on 08/03/2020 07:39 AM
I just road yesterday from Weldon Spring to Treloar, and I found a couple of things to watch out for. About 2 miles west of Augusta, is a farm road you cross, and the road had ruts about a foot wide and at least a foot deep. Had to stop and carry the bike over the ruts. If you were to hit that road riding, you most certainly would crash.
As I got closer to Treloar heading west, the last few miles before Treloar were many spots where the gravel had wash away some, and within a mile of Treloar, it got progressively worse. The depot at Treloar was so bad, it was down to gravel bed, and even then had mud washed away from that. It was un-ride-able. I didn't go any further to see if it got better or not.
Big B on 08/03/2020 08:31 PM
We were planning a ride from near Machen to Clinton and back starting on Thursday..... That would put us in Treloar on Friday morning. Any suggestions on how to get around the bad trail. Could we walk our bikes through? Any suggested detours? Should we try to find a shuttle?
John from O’Fallon, MO on 08/03/2020 08:58 PM
We did a west to east trip and passed through the area on Saturday 8/1. Definitely have to keep your eyes open but we rode through on 29er MTN Bikes. West of there several trees were down and we were able to navigate around them. Watch the detour at the 118 MM, do not go around the barriers you will never get through, major rock slide ( happened a while ago ). Also we followed the option 2 detour ( (posted in this forum ) at the bridge that was washed out. Creek crossing was simple....the river mud on the levee was thick...If it’s wet be prepared for a major bike cleaning!
Big B on 08/04/2020 08:49 PM
Thanks for the information John. We really appreciate the information you provided. We were aware of the rock slide and the bridge closure from our ride last year and are grateful for the work arounds provided by this forum. We are really looking forward to our trip.
CB from STL on 08/06/2020 10:01 AM
The trail west of Treloar for about 1/2 a mile is very rough (it’s down to the concrete underneath & a culvert is being repaired.
Deep sandy material on trail west of Augusta before the new bridge, nothing that wasn’t rideable but a watch out.
Trail is closed East of Ell Rd just before Machens, as they are working on the repair out there.
Trail was in really good shape considering the amount of rain we have had in short amounts of time. State is doing a great job doing repairs & clearing downed trees.
Big B on 08/08/2020 07:28 PM
Rode through Treloar to Rhineland on Friday and agree with CB, the parks department is incredable. Not a tree limb on the trail and they have done a lot of grating. Still a little rough so take it a little slow for the first mile west of Treloar. In Rocheport now and the trail has been pretty good. Great riding so far....
tire tubes -
Dave from Kirkwood on 08/08/2020 10:28 AM
Do you all recommend a specific brand of tire tubes for riding the Katy Trail? I need to replace my spares. I ride a hybrid-type bike, with Schwalbe marathon tires. I have never had a flat on many miles of the Katy, but did get some on city trails this summer.
brad wilson from st louis on 08/08/2020 01:30 PM
If you used these tubes for a long time and just recently got flats, then I'd just get a new set of the same tubes.
Inner tubes move as the tire flexes and will eventually develop leaks. You have to replace them sometime. Some people put talc on the tubes to allow them to move with less friction.
I use schwalbe tires (Marathons, Big Ben, etc.) and find them to be the key element in flat protection.
I use brand name inner tubes like Giant, Specialized or Schwalbe.
Chuck's Bikes in Boonville -
Julie from st louis on 08/07/2020 11:04 PM
sorry to find out Chuck is gone. He was a great person. He replaced my kickstand when it broke while I was doing the Katy. Recently found the bill, sorry I was never able to pay him for this. He truly was one of the good guys..
Clinton Trailhead in Clinton -
Kgirl from St Louis on 08/06/2020 07:47 PM
I am planning a point to point, beginning to end ride of the entire Katy Trail. I would like to start in Clinton and work my way east. I plan to take a train to Sadelia and then get to Clinton somehow. Any suggestions?
Ronald S Roberson from PLANO on 08/07/2020 05:59 AM
When I did it, I just ate lunch in Sedalia and rode back to Clinton on the bike.
Steamboat Junction Campground in Bluffton -
jls from St Louis on 08/06/2020 04:01 PM
Just spent a night at Steamboat Junction Campground, as pleasant & clean as we remembered a few years back. Right off the Katy Trail, w/ nice tent sites set back away from the road & bike trail. Owner is friendly and accommodating. Was able to contact via phone w/ questions. Very quick to respond.
Shuttle from St. Charles-to Clinton on August 30 -
Tom from Ohio from Mount Vernon, Ohio on 08/03/2020 07:55 AM
I am looking for a shuttle for 6 on Sunday August 30 leaving St. Charles and headed to Clinton? Any ideas of the best service or availability during this time of COVID-19?
Alex from Boonville on 08/06/2020 01:07 PM
Check with the Bike Stop Cafe out of St. Charles. They'll shuttle you to Clinton.
Where can I park for a multiday trip (doing both directions so start point isn't a deal breaker) -
Lew from Gaithersburg on 08/04/2020 05:54 AM
I'm thinking about driving down either October this year or May next year to do the length back and forth but don't know where is safe to park and near enough to the trail heads.
John from O’Fallon, MO on 08/04/2020 08:44 PM
I would start in St Charles and park by the casino and get a shuttle up to Machens. Check with Bike Stop Cafe..they will have good info for you!
Big B on 08/05/2020 07:44 PM
I exchanged emails with the St. Charles visitors center. Their reply follows:
There is not an official overnight parking lot for vehicles for visitors using the Katy Trail starting in St. Charles -- most trail users park in the Lewis & Clark Boat House and Museum parking lot located right by the Katy Trail. Here’s a detailed Downtown St. Charles Map:
(you’ll see the parking lot located at the bottom of map by Lewis & Clark Boat House)
We just recommend that you notify our local City of Saint Charles Police Department with the make/model of your vehicle and the dates you will be parked in that lot – here’s their number: 636-949-3300. Lots of folks will do this and there is not a problem with doing so.
Enjoy your trip - we are starting tomorrow!
Anonymous on 08/06/2020 07:39 AM
On the other end of the trail, Clinton and Sedalia are options. I've parked at the trailhead in Sedalia several times without issue.
Kim's Cabin in Windsor -
Lisa & Maeve from St. Louis, Missouri on 08/05/2020 02:10 PM
We had a VERY late start on a 95+ degree Sunday afternoon. We were dropped off in Clinton and we rode to Windsor for dinner (Happy China, yum) and a good nights rest to prepare for our ride east to Machens. Kim was there, the cooled cabin was EVERYTHING, the showers amazing and the covered bike storage was perfect as the night/morning sky opened up and downpoured for HOURS. Knowing we were planning to head out early, Kim checked on us, we were safe in the cabin and were waiting out the storm. She even picked up our breakfast I ordered from the Wagon Wheel since the thunderstorm was holding us hostage. She and the cabin couldn't have been nicer! We will definitely be back to stay in the future - bonus: the cabins are located right by the intersection of Katy Trail/Rock Island.
Kim Henderson - Kim's Cabins from Windsor on 08/06/2020 06:56 AM
So happy you found me and stayed at the cabins! Hope you had a great rest of your adventure!
Water Sources / restrooms along trail -
Perry from OFallon, mo on 08/04/2020 03:41 PM
We are planning on doing the entire ride in a couple of weeks from Clinton to Machens. We've been practicing for a while along the area's trailheads. We've gone as far east as Mokane to Machens during our practices. What I'm finding is that the resources that are said to be available are not necessarily available. We've found bathrooms locked; locations without water fountains -- or fountains turned off. It appears that we've going to have to make sure to bring a lot of our own water sources with us because we can't totally rely on the water being at the depot's. Is there a source I missed that shows the "true" condition of the water and restrooms available?
Jeff M. from Chesterfield on 08/05/2020 08:20 AM
You are not missing anything. The services at the trail heads are limited to none at all. I found from Boone to Clinton there are Casey's stores near several trail heads, but from Defiance to Boone, services are very limited. On my trip a few weeks back, I had to ask others for water two times because there was simply no places to get water. Be prepared with your own water and do not rely on any services at the trail heads.
Jim from St. Thomas on 08/05/2020 04:13 PM
Just a heads up........if you are going through Tebbetts and get caught short of water you’re welcome to stop at the Turner Shelter and fill your water bottles or just get a drink. There is usually ice in the freezer.
possible food stash at Hartsburg -
WB from St Joseph missouri on 08/04/2020 08:28 AM
Might seem like a stupid question, but here goes. A buddy and I are doing a short overnight ride to Hartsburg this upcoming weekend ( August 8th,9th,2020 ). Will not arrive till mid to late afternoon, apparently after the café closes. Planning on camping at the American Legion park. Drove there yesterday to scope out facilities. Noticed that there is a bbq grill at the park. Thinking that some charcoal grilled steaks sound pretty good for dinner. But not interested in packing charcoal, meat, etc on the 6 hour ride to the park. So anyway, does anybody know if I can drive there on Friday and stash a cooler with our stuff for dinner anywhere in that town, or with someone that we can pick it up from there?
Any idea if there is a Fastest Known Time Fkt for the Katy Trail? -
Terry from Arkansas on 08/03/2020 12:23 PM
With everything being cancelled i am looking for a new challenge. Considering riding the Katy Trail. Anyone know if there is a fastest time set I may just tour it but the thought of racing it self supported then touring it back to my car over a few days is also appealing.
Anonymous on 08/03/2020 02:22 PM
From the Frequently Asked Questions on the Home page:
Has anyone ever ridden the entire trail in a single day?
Amazingly, yes. We maintain a list of people who have ridden the Katy Trail in a single day, or covered the whole trail on foot.
Have a look there to see what the fastest recorded time is.
Ray (webmaster) on 08/03/2020 03:16 PM
Here's a quick link to that page:
Good luck! Whether you are fastest or not, let me know if you make it so I can add you to the list.
places to camp -
TJ from Neosho on 07/24/2020 07:24 PM
Give me the LATEST details on places to tent camp along the way? Clinton to Machens. I would like to do the trail using only hammock or tent camp and want to make sure I have a good plan.
I am planning on camping in Pilot Grove, Hartsburg, Marthasville, and then somewhere before Machens. This is the plan unless someone has a better one! :)
PTM from Stl on 07/24/2020 08:30 PM
My favorite places to camp are Sedalia fairgrounds, Coopers Landing and the big park in Hermann MO
Always was nervous I would not find trees to only hammock camp or an unfriendly park.
Use the search tool on this site for other suggestions.
Good luck and be safe there are some hot and oppressive sections along the way this time of year.
Al from Normal, Il on 08/01/2020 07:10 AM
Steamboat Junction Campground at Bluffton was a great place to stay. We stayed on 7/25/2020 on our bike trip west on the trail. Self checkin was easy, campground was clean and mowed. Shower was clean and nice. Very clean porta potty. We were the only ones there and it was nice and quiet. Dan, who runs the campground was very friendly.