For the next six days, you’ll be riding on Adventure Cycling’s “Lewis & Clark Trail” bicycle route across the state of Missouri. The first couple of days will be on the legendary KATY rail-trail. The most detailed website for this trail is http://www.bikekatytrail.com/ , which has service updates and links for buying maps and guidebooks. The official website is https://mostateparks.com/park/katy-trail-state-park .
A note for eastbound riders: The KATY Trail kind of ends in the middle of nowhere. At the trail’s end,
T/L onto a dirt road along RR tracks, then T/R onto unsigned Machens Road and cross the RR tracks.
This first day’s ride offers you two options for crossing the Mississippi River: via a bridge with a good shoulder from Alton, IL (18A), or via a ferry [on weekends] from Grafton, IL (18B).
Download Map Set 18A – Alton IL – Augusta MO (Via Bridge) – (Updated – 8/17/2018)
A major update provides important eastbound directions for crossing the Mississippi River bridge. Westbound directions for the first 2 miles after the west end of the bridge have also been changed.
On the next day (#20), you have an option to take an “eastern connector” route to join the original TransAm route in eastern Kansas, rather than following this “express” route all the way to Colorado.
The bridge across the Missouri river into Atchison has a good shoulder. Atchison is a good place for a layover, since there are no bike shops directly on the route between there and Sterling, CO.
You leave town heading west and leave the Lewis & Clark bike route, which goes north from here.