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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here the scoop,

I was in St. Louis over Christmas and like an idiot I watched the weather forecasts - cold and wet the entire time, so I left my bikes at home - of course every day was ridable :madman: :madmax:. So I'm planning ahead for this time. I'm going to be back in St. Louis around the 2nd week in March. I'm trying to set up a 2 day drink and ride trip that would include myself, my father in-law, and 1 to 2 brother in-laws. Skill levels are varied but everyone is at least minimally capable. The primary purpose of this trip is to be fun so I don't want anything so hard that is would be miserable for the other riders. If the weather is bearable I was also planning on camping overnight. So far here's what I've looked at:

1. Berryman trail:
Pros: Looks like it would be technical enough to be fun but not so much that the greener riders couldn't enjoy it, long enough to ride for 2 days if we wanted to stay on the trail.
Cons: 3 plus hours away from St. Louis. I didn't really want to be driving that long unless it's REALLY worth it.

2. Council Bluffs Lake Trail:
Pros: Looks like a good trail to try, camping available, more doable drive time of 1.5 hours.
Cons: Not sure if I could stretch it into a multiple day trip.

3. Katy Trail: This was my original plan and seems to be what I keep coming back to. I know there would be about 0 technical riding involved but I think what is lacking in technicality could be made up for in accessibility to bars and pubs. I was thinking maybe St. Charles to Portland which looks to be about 74 miles both ways.

Couple questions on Katy trail: Is there any singletrack that are within riding distance to the main trail? Anybody have any idea how to make this a loop instead of there & back? Are there any must-see towns/attractions along the part that I mentioned? Anyone have any better ideas that the 3 I've listed above?

Thanks in advance
 

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if you are looking for bar time look at castlewood never been there but from what i've read it has tons of different skill level trails and it's close to town ....

if riding/camping/drinking with the boys, then berryman is king i.m.o. 24 miles of awesome singletrack ride it one day ,camp/drink and then ride it the otherway the next.
campsites available clean fed ran site. bazil creek trail is roughly halfway you could park a car with food drink picnic and jam the rest after a nice lunch...
 

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You should know not to trust the forecast! :) I don't trust them any more than a day out around here...they always change. Sounds like there is some good riding down there, though!

on a side note- Not sure if I mentioned it in the other thread but planning on going to Platte Sat. a.m. if you can make it.
 

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Who is John Galt?
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With your varied skill levels I would strongly recommend the Middle Fork section of the Ozark Trail. It's just a half mile down the road from Council Bluff. There's nothing technical there other than the switchbacks which are arrowhead shaped and always get me. Climbs are fairly easy. There's a few water crossings but nothing deep. It's an out and back unless you take a few gravel roads then you can turn it into a loop. It's super scenic and a lot of fun. You can camp at Council Bluff or somewhere along the trail.

You mentioned singletrack off the Katy Trail. Some of Missouri's best trails are in St. Charles County and at least four are right off the Katy -- Klondike, Matson Hill, Lost Valley and Bangert Island. This link will get you to any of them. You can find lots of great drinking spots in St. Charles too. There's a microbrewery right off the trail in town but they made me mad last summer when they wouldn't let me in with a sleeveless cycling jersey on - but let a woman in with a sleezy tank top on...

Missouri weather in March can be mercurial -- might be 70 or it might be snowing. You takes your chances...
 

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Wolf nipple chips
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Big Jim Mac said:
...There's a microbrewery right off the trail in town but they made me mad last summer when they wouldn't let me in with a sleeveless cycling jersey on - but let a woman in with a sleezy tank top on...
I've never really seen tank tops as "sleezy" (sic) if it's during the middle of the summer... I think it would be more pleasing to most people's eyes than a big hairy dude with a cycling tan.

That being said, if your bar is on the Katy and you are very selective of which cyclist you do and don't let in, then you should probably move locations.

Regarding the trails, I'd say that you can not go wrong with a couple of laps at Council Bluff, if you're willing to drive that far. Easy to navigate, and super satisfying.
 

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Cabin Fever said:
Regarding the trails, I'd say that you can not go wrong with a couple of laps at Council Bluff, if you're willing to drive that far. Easy to navigate, and super satisfying.
I have to second that. Council Bluff trail is fun in both directions. You can also add miles of riding if you're willing to explore the Ozark Trail. The only drawback is no bars in proximity, so bring your own drinks.
 

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Castlewood is fun and has various trails and Chubb is near by if you want something more difficult. Its a park with several loops so you always end up in the same parking lot.

The Katy trial is so-so, fun if you're going for mileage or doing a winery tour. Its pretty much a flat turn-less family path on old rail beds. Some of the towns along it are ghost towns that don't even offer water while others have some good biker bars that don't hassle the cyclists. You'll get all types on it too, mostly hybrids tho. Be sure to call ahead for camping too, some of the grounds are limited in space and/or close at dusk.
 

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Southern Fried mUni
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Big Jim Mac said:
You can find lots of great drinking spots in St. Charles too. There's a microbrewery right off the trail in town but they made me mad last summer when they wouldn't let me in with a sleeveless cycling jersey on - but let a woman in with a sleezy tank top on...
Hahaha nice!

I like to ride Matson, Lost Valley, Klondike in that order then swing up the KATY to the Augusta Brewery for some liquid nourishment. They don't give a crap what you look like (at least not any time I've been there). Then once I got my buzz on it's time for a relaxing ride on the KATY back to Defiance. Good times!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks again for everyone's input. Looks like we're going to do the Katy trail and just hit as much singletrack as we can. One more question though: is there any good spots to camp along this stretch of the Katy? If the weather cooperates we're hoping to just camp over night. If camping doesn't work we'll probably just get a motel room - any ideas on that would be appreciated as well.
 
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