May 1, 201212:10 PMOutside Columbia
Come Outside And Play, Columbia!
If you’re a cyclist in Columbia, you’ve likely cruised down the MKT to the Katy Trail, possibly to Rocheport for a glass of wine or to the Big Tree in McBaine. Maybe you’ve ridden Hartsburg for the Pumpkin Festival or to Boonville for Pedaler’s Jamboree (which is May 26-27, by the way).
Think you can go farther? Tackle the whole darn state during the 2012 Katy Trail State Park Ride, a five-day ride (June 18-22) from St. Charles to Clinton. Now in its 12th year, the ride is 230 miles of fun, food and friendship.
“The Katy Ride provides a wonderful opportunity to experience some of the most scenic areas of the state and explore the communities along the trail corridor while learning about the state’s rural heritage and railroad history,” says Dawn Fredrickson, Field Operations & Katy Trail Coordinator for Missouri State Parks. “It also provides an opportunity to take a trip the whole family can enjoy, since we host the ride in June after schools have let out for summer vacation.”
The ride attracted cyclists from all across the state – and the globe. “The riders establish a strong sense of camaraderie with their fellow riders over the shared experiences during the week and the feeling of accomplishment at finishing the ride,” Fredrickson says. “Many of these riders make friendships that extend well beyond the ride – in fact, several riders have come back year after year to reconnect with old friends from previous rides.”
Columbia’s Nancy Rezabek is one of the regulars who returns year after year. “I have been on that ride about eight times,” she says, noting she’ll be back again this summer. “If you have been on something like RAGBRAI [the Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa], which is really lots of craziness and people, this is way calmer and quieter – we stay in nice places, usually a school yard or a park.”
You’ll ride 25 to 64 miles each day – enough to earn your breakfast, dinner and even a shower at each overnight stop. A shuttle will transport all gear, so all you have to do is hop on your bike and start pedaling. Here’s the schedule:
Monday, June 18
St. Charles to Hermann (64 miles)
Tuesday, June 19
Hermann to Hartsburg (56 miles)
Wednesday, June 20
Hartsburg to Pilot Grove (50 miles)
Thursday, June 21
Pilot Grove to Sedalia (25 miles)
Friday, June 22
Sedalia to Clinton (39 miles)
Riders who want an additional challenge can register for the “pre-ride” on June 17 from St. Charles to Machens, on the eastern end of the trail. The trail between St. Charles and Machens was completed in 2010 and officially opened last year. This year’s pre-ride will give the Katy Ride participants a chance to experience the entire trail, end-to-end.
Registration for the Katy Trail State Park Ride is limited to 300 riders, and people are encouraged to sign up before May 1. So, click here, and start training now!
Other upcoming cycling events:
April 22: Stone Hill Winery Tour of Hermann Omnium Stage Race
May 6: The Cedar Cross – Missouri’s first endurance cyclocross event
May 19: PedNet Trivia Night Fundraiser
May 26-27: Pedaler’s Jamboree