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Katy Trail Rock Island Spur Comments
Hermann -> Sedalia

Looking for feedback. We are planning a 3 day trip and are taking the train from Sedalia to Hermann and riding back to Sedalia. I am worried about day 1, we get to Hermann at noon and planned to ride 43 miles to N Jefferson. I am riding with my wife and age 14 daughter who are beginner level bike riders. Is it reasonable to make this distance before dark?

posted Jun 7 2011 1:01PM - TheDodsons, Austin Texas

It depends when you are planning for this trip. The one thing I didn't realize on my trip was that with the tree canopy "dark" can come about an hour or two before actual sundown. So fudge down a bit when you find out the projected sundown time.

Your wife and daughter will need to train a little anyway to handle the proposed distances. Keep in mind the actual distance will be a little farther than 43 miles in getting to the trail and getting from N Jefferson to any food/camping/hotel/motels you have in mind there.

That said, starting in Hermann at noon and hitting N Jefferson at about 5 or 6pm shouldn't be too much of a stretch, given time to rest and sight-see, etc.
posted Jun 7 2011 1:46PM - Skyguy9999

Sky guy makes some good points. Also, if you are doing your trip from now until it stops being hot, think twice about biking from noon until 4 pm. I see you are in AUstin so you know what heat is like. It's no cake walk in Missouri either.

If I were pinning this trip for myself during summer I would only go 20 or so miles the first day just to get on the trail, then start bright and early the second day.

Good luck.
posted Jun 7 2011 4:55PM - Cathy, Jefferson City

Keep in mind the trailheads along that stretch don't have water. You'll need to stock-up first or stop at the bar-grills in Rhineland, Portland, Steedman, or Mokane, or at the campgrounds/B&B in Bluffton for it. Mokane also has a daytime market for bottled water.

Tebbetts (13-miles east of N Jefferson) has a hostel shelter with running water, showers, fridge, air conditioning, and roof. It's kind of a dump, but it could be a good place to cool down if need be. Its front-door key is kept outside on a utility pole. Tebbetts also has a daytime convenience store just west of town. 43-miles could be a big bite for new riders if it's hot.

Like Skyguy says, start real early the next day and ride while it's fairly cool. You can make up a lot of miles and time then. Enjoy and be careful.

posted Jun 7 2011 8:40PM - jd, gkc

I have no personal experience with the train, but I have heard that you can plan on it running behind schedule due to the fact they share the tracks.
posted Jun 7 2011 11:18PM - Terry, Festus

With regard to JD's suggestion concerning water. I always carry 2 LARGE water bottles filled to the brim at the start. (I drink very diluted juice or gatorade if available. The juice trick may help sustain your riders. I know that it helps me tremendously to maintain energy.) Still, I may have to refill. Point being, one small water bottle per rider empties out quickly. Of course, you may be very well aware of this. Just a thought.
posted Jun 8 2011 10:27AM - Kelly, Manasquan, NJ

You might want to take the train from Hermann to Sedalia and bike back to Hermann. Also if you are planning your trip within the next few weeks, be alert to the river levels since they are going to release water up north and are predicting flooding in certain areas along the trail from around Rocheport through Bluffton. Also, the DNR Katy Trail Ride (hundreds of bikes) starts at Clinton June 20th and goes to St Charles on June 24th.
posted Jun 8 2011 12:29PM - Gary, Near Tebbetts

I agree with all the above. Remember that riding on pea gravel/chat takes more energy than riding on pavement. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Pace yourself and you will be fine.
posted Jun 9 2011 2:44PM - Mike R, Saint Louis

Riding from early afternoon to North Jefferson is feasible before dark, even with tree cover. However, for beginning level bike riders, this may be a difficut ride starting in the afternoon, especially if you want to go at an enjoyable pace. I rode the trail yesterday, and specically noted that this section was in the poorest condtion due to a lot of debris, branches, larger stones, and uneven surfaces.
posted Jun 18 2011 12:13AM - Bruce, Columbia, MO

The convenience store on west side of Tebbets has closed.
posted Jun 18 2011 2:35PM - Doug, Bluffton

We just completed a 3 day trip from Sedalia to Hermann on June 8-10 and we had a beginner in our group. We ride very leisurely. We left Jefferson City around 10 AM and got into Hermann around 4.
posted Jun 20 2011 4:18PM - Todd, Kansas City

Tags: Jefferson City, Clinton, St Charles, Rhineland, Bluffton, Portland, Steedman, Mokane, Tebbetts, Rocheport, Sedalia, Hermann, North Jefferson Trailhead, Turner Katy Trail Shelter Hostel, Restaurants, Camping, Trailheads, Water, Route Suggestions, Weather, Hiking, Running, Events Modify Tags

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