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  1. #1
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    Where Should I Take A Midwest MTB Trip To?

    I am in need of some assistance in planning a 5-9 day trip later this summer. In years past I have always headed west for my trips i.e. Colorado and South Dakota’s Black Hills in search of fresh singletrack. I have came to realize that there are many great underappreciated Midwest singletrack trails much closer to home that would satisfy my needs. This year I am looking to stay within a 6 hour radius from central Iowa. I have ridden all major trails in Iowa and the trails around Madison, Wisconsin, Redwing, Minnesota and Perry Lake in Kansas. I thoroughly enjoyed all of these trails especially Perry Lake. I also know that every state has some great I will be with the GF so beginner friendly trails for her and advanced for me would be ideal. To make a trail system worth traveling to I believe it should be well thought out with good signage/difficulty ratings, maps and up to date on trail maintenance. I am looking to camp most nights to keep the costs down. My only requests in a campground are showers for after riding. Another bonus would be staying in close proximity to some good breweries/brew pubs.

    Thanks in advance for all input!

  2. #2
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    Make a trip to the UP of Michigan. Houghton and then Marquette. On the way back, stop around the Hayward are of northern Wisconsin to ride the CAMBA system of trails.

  3. #3
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    Good job! head north young man

    We’d also suggest heading north and maybe travel a tad further than 6 hours. You could hit Levis mound near Neillsville WI. LevisMtn.bike.html Then head north again for the short drive to the CAMBA trails.. Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association From their head northeast about 3.5 hours to here, which is the Keweenaw peninsula. We have 4 systems all close to each other one being Copper Harbor trails can be seen at www.copperharbortrails.org Here is a nice video made up there this spring Andrew Shandro and Trek Bikes visit Copper Harbor, Michigan Video - Pinkbike The other systems here are Swedetown trails, Mi Tech and Churning Rapids. All of these are quite different from each other and some trail info can be had at. Keweenaw Trails | Outdoor adventures in Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula

    We have ridden all of these systems listed and will fully recommend them. The ones here are marked. We’ve been to the Hills to ride quite a few times plus other western locations over the years..
    Last edited by arly; 07-14-2012 at 07:10 PM.
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  4. #4
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    KC has a slew of great trail. Perry is far from the best trail in the area. You could spend 2 days alone at Landahl park in Blue Springs Mo just outside of KC. Swope is also a phenomenal trail, as is Clinton lake in Lawrence. Blue River Parkway and Shawnee Mission Park are also raved about trails but I haven't ridden there. If you have time, head South through KS and hit up Camp Horizon in Ark City or Lake Wilson in Hays Ks. Both our killer trails. Horizon is still the most technical trail I've ridden, and Wilson is often compared to Moab with its big rock bluffs. OKC and Tulsa also have amazing trails. Turkey Mountain in Tulsa has some 60 miles of rocky technical trail.

  5. #5
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    Party in KC at night, stay in a nice hotel. You can ride a different great trail everyday. Landahl, Swope, Perry, SMP, Kill Creek, Minor, etc... all within reach of your cozy hotel. I have ridden camp horizen, fun but not worth the 3 hour + drive. Cant miss with KC. Unless your the Chiefs or Royals... Sorry had to thorw that in
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  6. #6
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    Western Wisconsin has pretty decent rail in Neillsville. Trails range from intermediate to expert.

  7. #7
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    go to singletrackDOTcom and search wisconsin.
    all the trails mapped in wisconsin are there for your enjoyment.

  8. #8
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    Head to the Omaha area. We have about 7 trails within a 25 mile radius of Omaha. While you are here, ride the Taco Ride on Thursday night in the Council Bluffs area, right accross the river from Omaha...if you haven't done it yet, its a real blast! Maybe spend a day or 2 in Omaha, then head south 3 hours to the Kansas City area.

  9. #9
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    I think I like getagrip's suggestion. You could get a lot out of your trip hitting up both places. I've never ridden in Omaha, but I've ridden a few trails around KC. Perry isn't bad, but I find Clinton more fun. Landahl is the best of those, in my opinion, and is considered one of the best in the area. It has trails for family/beginners up to advanced XC/trail riding. As was previously mentioned, I hear a ton of positives about Blue River Parkway and Swope. Supposedly they're now some of the most difficult in K.C. When my new bike gets in, I plan to test them out.
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  10. #10
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    I do like Getagrip's idea.

    Also, if you want to camp, you can camp at Smithville Lake, on the north side of the KC metro. Pretty decent campgrounds (not a lot of trees though). They have a paved trail system that you can ride to get to the singletrack. Lots of beginner-friendly stuff at SMV, with some tech in there for you also. Within a 45 minute drive of SMV is Swope Park, Landahl Park, Shawnee Mission Park, and Blue River Parkway. A little farther west in Lawrence is Clinton and Perry.

    There's also Crowder State Park just west of Trenton, MO on your way down. Their campground is a MO state park, which is badass. Great facilities, nice spots, lots of trees, clean showers/toilets. Awesome singletrack, and I bet you could get Doug Long or another local to show you around.

    The only downside is that there isn't much for breweries close to SMV. The Brick House in downtown Smithville has good food and a good beer selection. The owner is a mountain biker and supports the trails. Going a little further south to actual KC, you can find lots of eats in the Zona Rosa shopping center. Gotta go further into town to get to 75th Street Brewery at 75th and Wornall (short drive from Swope Park trails).

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Francis Buxton View Post
    I do like Getagrip's idea.

    The only downside is that there isn't much for breweries close to SMV. The Brick House in downtown Smithville has good food and a good beer selection. The owner is a mountain biker and supports the trails. Going a little further south to actual KC, you can find lots of eats in the Zona Rosa shopping center. Gotta go further into town to get to 75th Street Brewery at 75th and Wornall (short drive from Swope Park trails).
    If you are looking for good beer, you can stock up while you are in Omaha! Head over to Beertopia on 35th and Farnham and they have something like 400 beers to choose from...and they are priced really well!

  12. #12
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    If you head to the Omaha area and continue on to Missouri, definitely stop at Lewis and Clark in Council Bluffs (right next to Omaha). Tranquility Park in Omaha is beginner friendly and you could also hit up Platte River State Park in Lewisville, right outside Omaha. Omaha does have Lucky Bucket brewery and quite a few fun bars with lots of different beer choices (Jake's, Beertopia, Crescent Moon). If you head down to Missouri, stop at Krug Park in St. Joseph, MO (about 70 miles north of KC). I'm a girl and if your girlfriend is a newbie, I think she'll like it. Fast, flowy and fun! Not really any technical riding and one of my favorites I've ridden in the area so far. Swope in KC is a great trail, your GF could always walk the rocky parts, the smooth stuff is a great time.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtytraillover View Post
    If you head to the Omaha area and continue on to Missouri, definitely stop at Lewis and Clark in Council Bluffs (right next to Omaha). Tranquility Park in Omaha is beginner friendly and you could also hit up Platte River State Park in Lewisville, right outside Omaha.
    There is also Swanson Park and Jewel Park, both in the Bellevue area, about 10 miles South of Omaha.

  14. #14
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    trailshaveourrespect.org for trails around omaha. good stuff! Also "thor trails" facebook group

  15. #15
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    Hey OP, where did you end up riding?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtytraillover View Post
    If you head to the Omaha area and continue on to Missouri, definitely stop at Lewis and Clark in Council Bluffs (right next to Omaha). Tranquility Park in Omaha is beginner friendly and you could also hit up Platte River State Park in Lewisville, right outside Omaha. Omaha does have Lucky Bucket brewery and quite a few fun bars with lots of different beer choices (Jake's, Beertopia, Crescent Moon). If you head down to Missouri, stop at Krug Park in St. Joseph, MO (about 70 miles north of KC). I'm a girl and if your girlfriend is a newbie, I think she'll like it. Fast, flowy and fun! Not really any technical riding and one of my favorites I've ridden in the area so far. Swope in KC is a great trail, your GF could always walk the rocky parts, the smooth stuff is a great time.
    I'm about two hrs from St. Joe. Have you been to krug lately I might make a trip there soon

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  17. #17
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    We haven't went anywhere yet. A little more confidence boosting saddle time is in progress for her at the moment. All of the feedback is great!

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