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Katy Trail Rock Island Spur Comments

I'm bicycling back across the US to Maryland. I'm connecting with the Katy Trail tomorrow and I'm wondering if there's any free camping for cyclist? I am used to the Alligany Passege that has free hiker/biker campgrounds. I see there's camping along but it looks like it's all privately owned. So if anyone can give me a little more info that would help me out. Or I might have to use the warmshower website to camp. For the fact I only have enough money to get me back into southern Maryland. So my money is for groceries only.
posted Apr 10 2012 10:30AM - Alphonso, Waldorf, MD

I guess there are no hiker biker campsites. I guess I'll be stealth camping along the trail when it's time to sleep. I will be riding from Kansas City tomorrow to Clinton to start the trail. I should be in St Louis Sunday night. Thanks for the info.
posted Apr 10 2012 7:02PM - Alphonso

City Park in Pilot Grove, Volunteer Park in Hartsburg, it is the gazebo by the trail head. Also about 2 miles before you get to Hartsburg and approx the same distance after Wilton, there is the Hart Creek Conservation area, nothing but a fire ring but it is free camping. There is a sign and gate on the left of the trail. There is a pretty nice hostel in Tebbets that is five dollars to stay there, that is about 21 or 22 miles on past Hartsburg. That's all I know of, hope this helps. Good luck on your trip.
posted Apr 10 2012 9:02PM - Anonymous

Free camping in Clinton near the trailhead at the Clinton Commuity Center. Go on the north side straight back, turn left for 100 +/- feet, then turn right to enter the county fairgrounds. Once inside, look to your right. That's the area I camped two years ago. There's a gate where you can go to the Center and use the showers. Tell them you're on the Katy Trail.
posted Apr 10 2012 11:04PM - Gene, Indiana

In addition to the above, Davisdale Conservation Area just west of Rocheport(MM 178) allows primitive camping similar to Hart Creek Conservation Area west of Hartsburg(MM 154). In Hartsburg, the better option is to stay in town at the city park mentioned above. The Hostel in Tebetts(MM 132) does cost $5/night but it is unmanned and noone is going to care if you stop there to get cleaned up as long as you don't make a mess yourself. It is normally locked, but the key is located on a utility pole on the east side of the building.

Another hiker that was on here a few years ago camped at the city park in Rhineland(MM 105). It has water, restrooms, and picnic tables and is located just north of the trail west of the ballpark. Marthasville(MM 78) allows camping at the city park. It is located south of the Katy and you camp on the other side of the street near the ballpark. I think they charge if you want to use the showers but other than that it is free.
posted Apr 10 2012 11:45PM - stevek, saint louis, MO

Steve, I think the people that own and operate the bunkhouse might care quite a bit about someone staying there without paying. Their charge is minimal at best and they DO have bills associated with it. To advise others to stay without paying is both inconsiderate and irresponsible. Sure would hate to have the owners close it down due to such actions.
posted Apr 11 2012 4:49PM - Doug, Bluffton

There was a thread here not too long ago about businesses that have closed along the Katy and how we should all support them.

It's a good read.
posted Apr 12 2012 7:43AM - Trek

Thank you all. This is a great trail and I did camp behind the community center in Clinton last night. I'm in Sedalia now and I'm going for the next town.
posted Apr 12 2012 4:39PM - Alphonso

I have no problem supporting local businesses and paying to camp but I went from Florida to Cali. Down in Mexico, and riding back to Maryland. So my funds are at 0. I have just enough for food, so I'm racing as fast as I can back home to work for a couple of months for some cash. I even stopped in Las Cruses, NM at the day labor to make a few $. So it's not that I'm cheap, I'm just broke as I can be. But tanks again for the info. Hope to see some people out there.
posted Apr 12 2012 4:51PM - Alphonso

Do you have a journal of your ride anywhere like crazyguy?
posted Apr 13 2012 3:15PM - Trek

You can look me up on Facebook. Alphonso Eusantos, also I'm fonsontheroad.webs. But it's a free site and I'm out of space so just look me up on Facebook.
posted Apr 13 2012 4:01PM - Alphonso

I read stevek's comment about the Tebbitts Hostel differently. He suggested it as an overnight stay for $5 or a good place to stop and "take a break" after a few miles on the trail. I have used it for both needs, such as a bathroom break AND also for overnight shelter. Either way, I always leave a donation before I take off down the trail.
posted May 1 2012 8:58PM - RonS, Harrisonville

Tags: Clinton, Marthasville, Rhineland, Tebbetts, Hartsburg, Wilton, Rocheport, Pilot Grove, Sedalia, Missouri State Fairgrounds, Volunteer Park, Turner Katy Trail Shelter Hostel, City Park, Davisdale Conservation Area, Hart Creek Conservation Area, Restaurants, Groceries, Camping, Water, Restrooms, St Louis, Kansas City, BikeKatyTrail.com Modify Tags

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