brad wilson from st louis on 7/25/2021 5:09:11 PM:
The condition of the trail varies with the weather and the repairs being done by the state.
If it has rained a lot, then it can be soft enough that narrow tires will sink in.
Steady rains can also lead to ruts and washouts.
If it has been very dry, sometimes the trail will develop cracks large enough to swallow a narrow tire.
If the state has laid down new gravel, you will encounter several inches of loose gravel.
Then there is debris like branches, downed trees, rocks, and ruts created by tractors and other vehicles.
And on some occasions the trail will be smooth and hard packed for miles and miles. Can't really rely on that.
People also report nasty, tire-piercing thorns in some places.
I recommend riding a 700x35c/650x1.5 tires or larger (or its equivalent for your tire setup).
Generally there is no need for knobs.
I've done several trips in the conditions listed above with 650x2.0 smooth tires and it has worked well for me. I think I'll go. down to 1.5 tires when this set wears out.
A friend of mine with a gravel bike rode with me using 700x37 semi-knobby tires.
I always use tires with a kevlar belt. Aside from the thorns, there are times when small pieces of sharp gravel can work into the tread, and kevlar seems to prevent punctures.