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Thread: Trans Iowa Trail Route Development

  1. #1
    Registered User 160860's Avatar
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    Trans Iowa Trail Route Development

    Since the Midwest is vertically challenged when it comes to terrain, those of us here have to look for every opportunity we can for off the beaten path challenging rides. This is why I am looking for any riders interested in developing a South to North route to traverse the Loess Hills in Western Iowa, aka the Trans-Iowa-Trail (TWT). The goal is to create a route similar to the Trans-Wisconsin-Trail (TWT) that will consists primarily of level B (non-maintained) roads and gravel roads through the Loess Hills from the Missouri boarder in the south to the South Dakota / Minnesota broader in the north.

    This could make for some fun rides before heading out to for the Rally in July.

    The Loess Hills: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loess_Hills

    If anyone is interested please let me know. The Iowa DOT offers downloadable plat maps (3ftx3ft type size) that show all the level B and gravel roads by county. I have started on Mills county but there are still 8 counties more to go.

  2. #2
    This will be an Adventure Detour for The GS Giant (and it was one for Missouri last year).

    Looks like a great little detour off the slab.


  3. #3
    Registered User 160860's Avatar
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    Great info, thanks for the route. This looks like it covers 1/3 of the state. I'll have to get out and see just how many B level roads there are. I know there are quite a few up in there, it is just a matter of connecting dots. Whatever I come up with to extend this I will post the additions for all to enjoy.

  4. #4
    I've not actually ridden this route, I constructed it from on-line info about the area... it looks like a great part of the state with land features one wouldn't expect out there.

    If you visit the site where my map is stored and look on the right side of the map, you will see an "Export" tab that lets you download the route for your GPS.

    Please post up what you find!

    Thanks.

    Ian

  5. #5
    Registered User 160860's Avatar
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    Great Diversion

    For anyone heading West to the Rally. Sorry, I am really late in posting an update on these and other routes through the Loess Hills. Yes, this is a good fun ride. Iowa gravel roads are always well maintained but depending on when you ride it you can have fresh laid gravel 3-4 inches deep, usually in Spring. The B-Level roads in here are great fun through the woods and hills. However, since they are glacier loam their condition depends completely on the weather. They can range from dry hardpack with routes, to dry powder loam that hides the routes, to tacky when wet, to slippery than snot after a good thunderstorm.

    Still working on a good border to border route through the hills. I will definitely have something for next years Rally in St. Paul. Maybe a Omaha to St. Paul all dirt route?

    So, anyone taking the slab down I80 from the East wanting a nice change of pace should hit these up. I would be more than happy to ride with anyone riding through.

    Dutch

  6. #6
    Registered User trevward's Avatar
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    2022 Trans Iowa Trail version 2

    This is a new attempt to adding a new version of the Trans Iowa Trail.

    Here is a DRAFT without the gpx files. I can send them to you once the ball is rolling well.

    Trans Iowa Trail version 2? I am planning a Trans Iowa Trail ride from the Missouri River to the Mississippi River. Starting at the Huff Access County Park just east of Blencoe, Ia. Here we can dip our back tires in the Missouri River.

    Day 1 (225 miles) would be through some of the Loess Hills. Over to Elk Horn to see the Danish American Museum. Then onto a Freedom Rock in Kimballton. Upto Audubon to take a look at Babe the Blue Ox. The next stop will be south of Adair to see the Jesse James historical marker. Onto another Freedom Rock south of Menlo. Next will be the Roseman covered bridge in Madison County. Finishing the first day at Pammel Park campground southwest of Winterset.

    Day 2 (216 miles) starts with a cup of great coffee at Pammel Park Coffee Company. Then onto Winterset to visit the John Wayne Museum followed by a quick trip to Clark Tower in the Winterset City Park and a look at the Culter-Donahue covered bridge. We then head east and a little south through Madison and Warren Counties over a few challenging B-level roads. We will travel through Pella and get a Dutch letter and visit the Dutch windmill. Heading east from Pella, we will find more gravel and B-roads. Our final destination for the day will be at the Saulsbury Bridge Recreation area north and west of Muscatine.

    Day 3 (185 miles) We pick up part of a track that I found called the IEAT (Iowa Eastern Adventure Trail). Which comes off of the TIT (Trans Iowa Trail). It leads to the TWAT (Trans Wisconsin Adventure Trail). The IEAT will take us to Sabula where we will dip our front tires in the Mississippi River. Sabula is where the TIT track and video I found starts and finishes. We then head north to Dubuque through Bellevue. From Dubuque, one can continue onto the TWAT, but that will have to be on another trip. From Dubuque we will head back home on the slab.

    I am thinking about doing this trip in September of 2022 as the month of September is the driest month of the riding season. I believe that the mileage will be do able considering these numbers are similar to what is done on the Adventure Palooza over more challenging tracks.

    Attached are the following files:
    TIT: I found this file on ADV Rider a few years back. On the track information, it show that this track would be 790 miles looping through southeast Iowa, west to I-35, north into Madison County and then back east on a similar path that my Day 1 and Day 2 travel.

    Trans Iowa Trail Mo-Miss 22 Day 1
    Trans Iowa Trail Mo-Miss 22 Day 2
    I drew Day 1 and Day 2 on Basecamp with the help of previous tracks, Google Maps, and Iowa DOT colored county maps (https://iowadot.gov/maps/digital-map...nd-county-maps).

    IEAT: I found this on some site, maybe ADVRider?? It has point time stamps of 7/9/17.

    IEAT Eastern Ia. Trail 2022 Day 3
    I modified the IEAT track to cross the Sabula bridge. As well as ride on a couple different B-roads than the IEAT (2017) track had on it.
    08 R1200 GSA

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by trevward View Post
    T
    Here is a DRAFT without the gpx files. I can send them to you once the ball is rolling well.
    These sound like great rides... we drove our RV through the Loess Hills area on our way out west to Great Falls, bike in the trailer... I am definitely going back to ride some day.

    Are you going to post the GPX files at some point?

    Ian

    ps -> iirc, in 2012 at least 10 people rode through the Preparation Canyon in the Loess Hills area on their way to Sedalia, as part of the second GS Giant event.
    Go soothingly through the grease mud, as there lurks the skid demon.
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  8. #8
    Registered User trevward's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visian View Post
    These sound like great rides... we drove our RV through the Loess Hills area on our way out west to Great Falls, bike in the trailer... I am definitely going back to ride some day.

    Are you going to post the GPX files at some point?

    Ian

    ps -> iirc, in 2012 at least 10 people rode through the Preparation Canyon in the Loess Hills area on their way to Sedalia, as part of the second GS Giant event.
    Yes, I am going to load the gpx files. I would like to ride each of the sections and see if there are any closed roads on the tracks that I have drawn. Spring time, maybe???
    08 R1200 GSA

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