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Katy Trail Rock Island Spur Comments
Mileage/Direction Questions

I am considering a trip across the trail next spring. I have a couple questions for you veterans.

Is it a better ride east-to-west or west-to-east? Prevailing winds? Uphill/downhill?

I'm excusively a road rider, so given the surface, what is a reasonable amount of mileage to think about per day?

Thanks for any input.

posted Oct 31 2004 10:01PM - Anonymous

I rode the trail in early April this year from west to east. I had hoped to catch a west or southwest wind, but the first two days the wind was out of the east and northeast (headwind), making those days cold and miserable. On the third day the wind changed out of the NW and I had a tailwind the rest of the way. So, I guess what I'm saying is there is really no way to know in the spring in MO, because the weather changes quickly. You don't have to worry about hills, the trail is almost flat all the way. I'm also a road rider, and I went 40 miles the first day (Clinton to Sedelia), 80 the second day (Sedelia to Columbia), 40 the third day ( Columbia to Tebbets) and 85 the fourth day (Tebbets to St. Charles). I guess this again depends on your level of fitness, and your iternary.
posted Nov 1 2004 12:24PM - TRinJboro, Jonesboro, AR

That's a very helpful response. THANKS!

If I might ask a couple more questions - what kind of bike did you ride? Road? Moutain? ??? How wide a tire? I'm thinking about a cyclo-cross bike with some tires wider than the road tire I ride.

Thanks again.
posted Nov 1 2004 1:50PM - Anonymous

I rode a mountain bike I borrowed from a friend. It's not the ideal bike for the trail, but it's better than a road bike, because if you get a heavy rain, the trail becomes too mushy for a road bike. I'm told a hybrid is the ideal bike, and I'm going to rent one if I do the trail again next year. If it is as good as I'm told, I'll probably buy one. The best way to get input on this is to call one of the bike shops that cater to the trail, a couple of good ones are The Touring Cyclist, in St. Charles 636 949-9630 and Scenic Cycles in Marthasville 636 433-2909. Good luck, you'll love the KATY !
posted Nov 1 2004 5:22PM - TRinJboro, Jonesboro, AR

Hopefully you haven't made your purchase on a bike for the Katy. I ride a road bike and wanted a bike for the Katy Trail and commuting. I purchased a cyclocross ( Lemond "Poprad" ). It is a great bike for the Katy. The tires are 700x32 which are wide enough and they are knobby. The frame is Reynolds 853 steel which will keep the rode "feel" to a minimum (vs aluminum). Comes with Shimano 105 shifters. Great bike!!!!
posted Dec 11 2004 10:18AM - Paul Knoblock, St. Louis, MO

Given: 1 full mountain bike, 83# of camping gear, 8 pts of water each
day. Riding in mid-October. Cash to buy food at near-trail venues.
Results: Day 1 Truman Lake State Park Campgounds to Cliffton City 85m
Day 2 Cliffton City to Wilton w\ side exersion up Columbia
fitness trail part way 72m. Camped out at Riverside
Day 3 Wilton to Herman. Went to Octoberfest. Camped in City
Park. 78m which excludes trip into herman from Loutre
Market only.
Day 4 Herman to St. Charles at Blanchette Landing Park. Side
trip about five miles up Lost Valley Trail. 80m.
Conclusion: Fantastic Trip.
In response to a question I read in the replies, It should be noted
that the wind blows down-river almost every summer afternoon at better than twelve knots. You do the math. I have ridden the trail
Clinton to SC as sections at least twice, and have never achieved what others proudly hail as a continuous east-to-west crossing.
posted Jan 13 2005 7:35PM - dwEbersole, Ellisville,MO

Tags: Clinton, St Charles, Marthasville, Tebbetts, Wilton, Columbia, Restaurants, Camping, Bike Shops, Water, Weather, Bikes and gear, Tires Modify Tags

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