Friday, September 25, 2015

Frisco Highline and South Wind Rail Trail

I am behind in my posting  so this is about a little roadtrip we took on September 11, 12 and 13.  We were invited to our neighbor’s induction into the Allen County Junior College Athletic Hall of Fame.  He played baseball there before moving on to Division 1 schools.

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Since we were traveling south, we ventured over into Missouri to check the Frisco Highline Rail Trail.  This is the second longest trail in Missouri at 36 miles, with the Kathy being the longest.  The former Frisco Highline Railroad carried Harry Truman from Springfield to Bolivar Missouri to warm up for his Whistle Stop campaign. 

The part of the trail near Springfield is urban.  So, we started north of there in Walnut Grove.  The small town did not post “no overnight parking” at the trailhead, so when we arrived at nearly dark, we just spent the night.  The next morning, we  jumped on the trail where there were already riders at day break. 

Our plan was to ride north to the Little Sac River Bridge and back, about 15 miles.  We totally enjoyed the route through farm land, then along the Coates Branch creek.  The information about the trail had said it was rough and washed out in places.  It must have been an old review, because we found it mostly well maintained.  It had periodic benches and the stream was flowing nicely—even a little waterfall.  It was a fun, relaxing ride.

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We might have spent more time on the trail, but we decided we better not cut it too short.  As it turned out, we made it just in time for the banquet at Iola, Kansas.  After the banquet, we decided to head south to Humboldt Kansas, once again parking for the night at the South Wind Rail trail head.

South Wind Rail Trail 

We had about an hour of time the next morning before we needed to head home.  Dan decided he would just pick me up at Iola, so off I went.  This is a beautiful, well maintained trail that connects the two small towns.  In a first for Kansas, this trail was built mostly through the efforts of Thrive Allen County, an active local non profit.  It is also maintained by the local county commission.  The trail was busy despite the early hour I was riding.  Here is an example of small rural Kansas towns working together to make something that can be enjoyed by all.  This Trail also hooks up with the 51 miles Prairie Spirit Trail that runs north to Ottawa. 

Congratulations Iola and Humboldt for working together for the good of all!

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1 comment:

Sue Prins said...

Hello Linda,
My husband and I found your blog by researching truck campers. We were amazed at how much you and Dan had in common with us. We love to travel, camp (especially off the grid stuff), bike and fish. We both fly fish as well and love to canoe when we camp. We usually travel with our Ford Explorer, loaded with tent (and gear), canoe on the top and bikes off the back. We are looking into travelling to Alaska someday soon and found your post on Alaska most helpful. Although Maine (booth Bay/ Bar Harbor area) is hopefully our next big trip. We are considering purchasing a truck camper at this point and appreciated your insights on this seemingly great way to travel in the methods that we prefer (simple, efficient and better access to off the grid spots). Thank you so much for your insightful information. Our ears and minds have been pricked to explore both the truck camper and the places you noted on Alaska. We would love to meet up with you both someday in our travels. I think we would become great friends!
All the best!
Sue and Mike