St. Louis is packed with biking options, from riverfront trails to gravity-fed singletrack.
Beer, bowling, baseball — and biking. St. Louis, historic Gateway to the West and the biggest city in the Great Plains, is a fantastic place to ride. It’s a silver-level Bicycle Friendly Community that’s threaded with more than 500 miles of shared-use pathways. Some, like the 11.8-mile Riverfront Trail, follow the Mississippi and pass by the Gateway Arch. Others, like the Forest Park Loop, circle the most popular greenspace in St. Louis.
The nearly flat, 247-mile Katy Trail starts in Machens and heads out into wine country and the Missouri River valley (with numerous inns and shuttles along the way). Creve Coeur Lake has a dozen miles of paved pathway, plus the lumpier Bootlegger’s Run, a 5.5-mile dirt trail with banked turns, dips, and ravine crossings that’s perfect for a mountain bike.
Head to Castlewood State Park, a woodland park with 17 miles of riverside curves, bluff climbs, and views of the Meramec River Valley. Farther afield, Shepherd Mountain Bike Park (in Ironton) is the spot for shuttle-assisted downhill, and Berryman Trail tackles the ridgelines and rocks of the Ozarks.
You can find great gravel an hour or two from town, especially in massive, 1.5-million-acre Mark Twain National Forest. Try County Road 402 and Pinecone Road to reach the heart of the landscape, or the Victory section of the Ozark Trail if you really want to rough it. Want to try your hand at track cycling? The Penrose Park Velodrome is open to all for training and racing.