Resources for planning Missouri bicycle and trails routes and trips

This page covers general resources, ideas, and techniques for planning your bicycle trip in Missouri. This is one page in our series about planning bicycle routes, trips, and tours in Missouri:

A question we are commonly asked: How can I find existing or planned bicycle routes and trails around Missouri?

Missouri's national bicycle routes
Missouri's national bicycle routes

Whether you are planning a bicycle tour, are going on a vacation where you want to find new and interesting places to ride, or just want to find places to bicycle or trails in or near your hometown, these resources will help.

  • Want to ride to a nearby store, school, library, or park?
  • Want to plan a two-day, two-week, or two-month bicycle trip around Missouri or the U.S.
  • Or are you agency staff or a citizen advocate planning bicycle facilities or routes in your city or region? 

These resources and ideas will be helpful for all of those purposes.

We are fortunate to live at a time when bicycle routes, trails, planning, and construction is blossoming across Missouri. We have more good route choices than ever. But it also means that you have to look at a lot of different resources to get a full picture of what is going on.

Bicycle Route & Touring Planning Tools

A few mapping resources have now done a lot of the work of compiling various bicycle route, trail, non-motorized usage, and motor vehicle usage patterns in order to create online bicycle maps and bicycle route wayfinding systems. These show at least some trails and bicycle routes, and their bicycle wayfinding feature usually gives you at least a decent first-draft of a route.

  • Strava Bicycling & Running Heatmap
    The Strava Heatmap is an invaluable tool for bicycle & pedestrian planning.  You can identify both the routes that exist and are currently in use by people who walk, run, & bicycle (the map has both "bike" and "run" modes) but also the places where there is obvious need but little travel because people deem it as too dangerous.

    If you are planning a ride or run--well, you can GUESS what is the best way to go, or you can just look at the heatmap and immediately see all the great routes that everyone is using. What better place to go than the place everyone else goes?
     
  • Missouri railroad corridors
    This shows active & abandoned railroad corridors--some of which may be available or could become available for conversion to trails over the years.

 

Route and Trail Resource Collections

  • On-road bicycle routes around Missouri (MoBikeFed), including:
    • Cross-state routes and trails, state bicycle map, route planning materials (proposed state bicycle routes, maps showing high & low traffic routes, etc)
    • Links to local bicycle route information around the state
  • Missouri trails & off-road routes (MoBikeFed), including:
    • Major cross-state trails (Katy)
    • Links to local trail information
       
  • Missouri gravel grinder and bikepacking routes - routes that feature Missouri's amazing system of gravel roads. Many of these are beautiful, scenic, very-well-connected, low-traffic routes that are just one notch lower in surface quality that major trails like the Katy or Rock Island Trails.
     
  • IBikeMO.org - we are working to create Missouri's premier bicycle tourism web site at IBikeMO.org, with information about trails, routes, events, and much more.
     
  • MoDOT bike/ped road & route info 

Specific Bicycle Route Networks & Plans