Sunday, June 20
Today our registration kicked off at 5p.m., although our staff arrived at
Frontier Park much earlier. Riders were excited to get out on the trail
tomorrow. Each rider picked up a rider packet with a ride t-shirt, water bottle,
map booklet and a few other necessities for the week.
At 7p.m., we gathered for our first rider meeting. David Kelly, Ranger Brett
Barnes and Bill Bryan explained the rules of the road. Most of our riders are
camping on the riverfront tonight. Tomorrow our breakfast begins at the
Ameristar Casino at 6a.m. Our route is 38 miles from St. Charles to
Since 2010 marks the Katy Trail’s 20th anniversary and the 10th anniversary
of our ride, we will have a “Top 10 from the Trail.”
Top 10 Things We’re Looking Forward to This Week:
1. “I’m excited to ride with Dawn and Bruce!” –Steve Reed, 2nd ride
“Meeting up with people we’ve ridden with before.” –Dawn Wayant, 2nd ride
“The tunnels! We go through some cool tunnels.” –Bruce Wayant, 2nd ride
week of relaxation.” –Ed Stoner, 2nd ride
5. “Just getting to the end of the
ride each day, surviving the heat.” -Larry Carner, 2nd ride
6. “Doing the
trail with my wife on a tandem.” -Rob Schraft, 3rd ride
7. “A lot of fun and
hopefully lose some weight!” –Liz Schraft, 1st ride
8. “The SAGs because
there is food and cold drinks.” –Quinn Derusseau, 1st ride and Henry Hiestrman,
9. “I’m looking forward to seeing this part of the trail. I’ve never
been to St. Charles.” –Mim Hiestrman, 1st ride
10. “Being with my grandsons
and going back to some of the places I saw last year.” –Kay Chase, 2nd ride
Rider of the Day
From: Round Rock, Texas
Michael first heard about the Katy Trail Ride last year. He wanted to ride in
2009, but his daughter, an avid cyclist and Livestrong (Lance Armstrong
Foundation) mentor, advised him to wait and train for next year. With a yellow
Livestrong bracelet on each wrist, he clearly shares his daughter’s passion for
raising money for cancer research. He rode in a Livestrong race and is planning
to do another one this summer. Two weeks ago, he rode 200 miles in preparation,
and he’s ready to hit the trails of Missouri on Monday.
Michael worked 31 years as a financial analyst before retiring. He also has
experience on stage as well as directing community theater. Before cycling,
Michael started racing motorcycles. He loves fixing things, especially vintage
bikes, motorcycles, houses and sets. “I love to bring things back from the
dead,” he says.
When he bought a set of tools to work on his own bike he began helping
friends and now runs a little side business. All of the money he charges for
repair and tune-ups is donated to the Lance Armstrong Foundation for cancer
Since he did most of his training in Texas, I had to ask about the Missouri
humidity. He says, “It’s horrible but I’ve done motorcycle camping for 15 years.
I’m used to being hot, sweaty and stinky.” He was excited to see the trail is
smoother than the one he used for training.
Monday, June 21 - St. Charles to Marthasville
Our day started off cloudy in St. Charles. Breakfast was at 6a.m. at the
Ameristar Casino and then on to the trail. The cloud cover didn’t last long, and
unfortunately, a few stretches of today’s ride were not shady at all.
A few representatives from our sponsor, Edward Jones, rode with us today. We
are grateful for their sponsorship and excited to see them on the trail!
Our first SAG stop was in Greens Bottom about seven
miles from Frontier Park. After a peaceful ride through the woods and some
fields, Weldon Springs SAG offered Gatorade and bananas. Ten miles later, we
were greeted by Sara and Chuck Yates at the Augusta SAG. The Yates have been
volunteering with the Katy Ride and the CAMP (Cycle Across Missouri State Parks)
since 1996. They love working at the stops because of the people they meet. Both
Sara and Chuck are cyclists themselves and have ridden the Katy in previous
“We really like to ride 30 miles a day in nice weather and stop and see
things along the way,” says Sara. The Yates have been married for 44 years this
July and they have three grandchildren.
“I think we have quite a jewel here,” says Sara of the Katy. “People come
from all over the United States to ride!”
Besides the SAG stops, riders enjoyed the Beer Garden in Augusta and the
Dutzow Deli in Dutzow. Everyone was on their own for lunch, so the restaurants
along the trail were popular places to eat, drink, rest and get to know other
Riders slowly started trickling into Marthasville, our campsite for the
evening, as early as 9:30a.m. Every spare inch of shade around the Marthasville
baseball diamonds was covered with tents. Lots of people found shady places to
nap and the concession stand and the Twin Gables served food and drink all
Top 10 Tips for Riding in the Heat
1. “Drink lots of fluids and wear light clothing.” –Lily LeBeau, 1st
2. “Use a cool pack around you neck. Something about having something on
your neck makes you feel cooler all over.” –Karen Kopp, 1st ride
3. “Stay in the motel.” –Renee Lance, 2nd ride
started drinking beer before noon. Haven’t done that in years.” –Dave Henley,
5. “Make an ice burrito out of a bandana. Roll it up and tie it
around you neck. The trick is you have to find ice.” –Margie Hilburn, 4th
6. “The earlier you leave, the cooler it is and you can set your tent up
under one of the nine trees.” Nick Lance, 2nd ride
7. “All day shower.”
–Keith Petersen, 10th ride
8. “Spray bottle for my dog.” –Jim Lewis, on and
off rider for 10 years
9. “How much water can we throw on each other?” –Dave
Behrens, 6th ride
10. “A good garden hose would be nice.” –Jan Shockley
Rider of the Day
Hometown: St. Louis, Mo
Gwen planned to ride the full tour this year, but
changed her mind because she is 19 weeks pregnant. “It’s a family thing. My dad
and I always do it. It’s a lot of fun.”
She rode all day today with her father, sister and two friends. This is
her fourth ride and she says it’s a family tradition. “I started on the back of
my dad’s bike when I was two years old!”
Tuesday, June 22 - Marthasville to Mokaine
We moved breakfast to 5:30a.m. instead of 6a.m. to try to beat the
inescapable heat today. The early start helped cyclists get most or the entire
ride in before the temperature rose. A little before noon, the heat index
reached 107 degrees and the coordinators decided to shut down the ride for the
safety of the riders and workers.
When the call was made, the volunteers and staff at SAGs stopped the riders
and shuttled them to our campsite in Mokane. Many cyclists who made it as far as
Portland were disappointed they couldn’t finish for the day, but all understood
the risks of extreme heat.
Today’s Poker Run was another good reason to stop at SAGs. At each stop,
cyclists picked a card from the deck and recorded it in their map books. At the
end of the day, a prize is given to the rider with the best hand and the rider
with the worst hand. Steve Kuster won the best hand, with a queen high straight.
David Tranum “won” the lowest hand with an eight high. Both winners walked away
with Missouri gift baskets.
The hot stop of the day – and they were all pretty hot- was the Shaved Ice
Stand in Bluffton. Everyone needed a snow cone on a day like today!
Thanks to a few flat tires and other small problems,
our bike mechanic, Nate, is staying busy. We’re lucky he’s riding all week with
us because he is such an important service to our riders. He is easy to find
with his carriage full of equipment.
Back at camp in Mokane, our riders ate lunch at the grocery store and the
Mokane Bar and Grill. The riders took the chance to swap stories, make friends
and reunite with friends from past rides over food and cold drinks. Tonight we
enjoyed a catered dinner by Argyle Catering, followed by a riders meeting and
entertainment from the River Ridge String Band.
Top Ten Things I Couldn’t Live without on the Katy Trail
- Handkerchiefs –Marissa Manring, 1ts ride
- The tent –Jim Bone, 3rd ride
- M&Ms –Mackenzie Manring, 1st ride
- My iPhone –Bruce Chulka, 2nd ride
- My air mattress –Anne Johnson, 1st ride
- The pad in my new pants –Mike Franklin, 1st ride
- Good, cold water –Duane Buersmeyer, 3rd ride
- The SAG stops –Donna Orf, 1st ride
- Pancake Man! –Sarah Murphy, 2nd ride
- Extra sausage –Josh Davenport, 2nd ride
Rider(s) of the Day
Today’s riders are the Dawson family from Austin, Tx. They ride two tandem
bicycles (a three-seater and a two)!
Wednesday, June 23 - Mokane to Rocheport
The Pancake Man paid us a visit this morning starting at 5:30a.m. Click on the video of him in action to the right.
The morning started strong as everyone tried to get as many miles in as they
could before the sticky afternoon. Unfortunately, the trail was flooded between
Hartsburg and McBaine. Riders loaded their bikes on to a truck and waited in our
SAG at Hartsburg for the bus. We were lucky to have the air-conditioned American
Legion hall to cool off. Hartsburg also has a few restaurants and bars for an
early lunch (especially the Big Muddy Tavern to watch the World Cup). Thanks to
all for being patient.
“It hasn’t been bad at all this morning. There’s a nice little breeze,” said
We finished the day at Les Bourgeois Winery outside of Rocheport. Riders
could ride into Rocheport and enjoy the shopping and cafes. We ate together at
the winery and saw a presentation on the history of the Katy Trail.
Rider of the Day
Hometown: Morton, Il
Allen started training for the Katy Ride one year ago. Since then, he’s lost
almost 100 pounds and feels “over prepared” for the ride. He has inspired his
daughter and son to run marathons and his mom to get a gym membership. He says
his diet has not changed too drastically; he’s cut out processed food. Next year
he hopes to weigh 180 pounds. Click on his video to the right.
Thursday, June 24 - Rocheport to Sedalia
Today was undeniably the best weather we’ve seen on this trip. The morning
started once again with the Pancake Man, this time serving French toast, eggs
and sausage. Riders had two options this morning: either a road route or a
shuttle to Davisdale Conservation Area because of some flooding just west of the
While cycling on the trail west of Boonville, riders felt the slight incline
on and off for most of the rest of the day. All morning we heard gears clicking
in and out of place.
We found a little pie place in Pilot Grove! No one could ride past the
Mennonite family selling lemonade and delicious cookies in the shade. Clifton
City was also a popular SAG stop run by Ernestine Todd and Debbie Anderson.
Ernestine loved sharing stories and trail history.
Our ride ended at the beautiful Sedalia Depot, which is now a museum and gift
shop. Some restaurants and food vendors were set up for lunch. Our day ended at
our campsite in Liberty Park. Nadlers catered dinner in the convention hall.
After dinner we had a concert from the Sedalia Community Band as well as a
Sedalia Bombers baseball game. Pitcher Mike Kickham pitched the first four
innings. He was drafted this year by the Giants!
Top 10 Reasons to Ride the Katy Trail
1. “The scenery. The river. The bluffs. –Peggy French, 1st ride
2. “I appreciate the historical significance, especially Lewis and Clark
stuff.” –Bruce Chulka, 2nd ride
3. “It’s a great family experience! It’s an adventure to come out and
experience the nature and the fresh air.” –David Fletcher, 1st ride
4. “It’s a really beautiful piece of country. It’s a good experience.” –Ben
Frey, 2nd ride
5. “Good food.” –Brandon Veale, 1st ride
6. “Really cool people.” -Maria Gomez, 1st ride
7. “It’s a way to experience nature.” –Cinthia Eyes, 1st ride
8. “It’s fun, it’s healthy and it’s good exercise.” –Frank Aguilar, 1st
9. “To see what your body is capable of.” –Ashi Guzman, 1st ride
10. “It’s the most beautiful trail I’ve been on. The reason I go on this ride
every year is not the cycling, it’s for the beauty of nature: the bluffs, the
river, the wildflowers” –Anita Philbrick, 6th ride
Rider of the Day
Hometown: Houston, Tx
Nick is our resident “rocket scientist.” Literally, he retired from NASA and
he keeps us updated on the space station’s appearance in the sky. Some gathered
with him to watch it pass on Tuesday morning and again tonight at 10:11p.m.
(Check out NASA’s
Skywatch Sightings Calculator to see when the space station will pass over
your area!) Both his bike and his wife’s bike have Texas license plates with
their names on them. Nick’s also has another plate that reads KC5KKBO, which is
his amateur radio license for talking with the space station.
Friday, June 25 - Sedalia to Clinton
Today we completed the final leg of our journey, ending in Clinton. Riders
seemed to take a little extra time to enjoy the scenery and the SAGs during the
38 miles. Rodney Wesner brought out his ’57 Studebaker Golden Hawk to show off.
He bought the car new when he was 25 and he’s put 103,000 miles on it since
then. He shared his story and his car with riders at the Windsor SAG.
We had another special treat at the Calhoun SAG- Justin’s Nut Butter donated
individual packets of organic honey peanut butter. Some people put it on apples,
but most just squeezed it straight into their mouths.
Everyone was sweating and smiling by the time they pulled into Clinton. We
had brown bag lunches and enjoyed the company of our new and old friends for a
few hours as we packed the vans and waited for the buses to
Rider(s) of the Day
The students of Scuola
Vita Nuova Charter School in Kansas City.
Thanks to everyone for a great week! The staff and riders all seemed to enjoy
each other and the trail. A special thanks for all the patience with the
flooding and the heat. Can’t wait to see you next year!