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The St. Louis Riverfront Trail follows the Mississippi River on the Missouri side, from Gateway Arch heading north to the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge, part of the legendary Route 66. The trail is distinctly urban—gritty even, in places—passing among old industrial areas along the river and atop a levee. There are plans to renovate some of the buildings.
The landscape is dotted with trees, and you'll find a narrow green belt along portions of this riverfront trail; watch for wildlife in these sections. Some crossings are not paved and you'll also have to be mindful at these crossings for traffic. In addition, there are a few short hills that lead to and from the levees.
Park at the northern end off Riverview Drive and at Chain of Rocks Park farther south along Riverview Drive. Parking is available off Riverview Drive south of Scranton Avenue. Park of Leonore K. Sullivan Blvd. near the intersection with Biddle Street and at Gateway Arch.
Parked in Soulard got on trail by graffiti wall. All paved trail, some debris in areas but nothing major. Aside from bollards but pretty easy to spot those!
Views include: the Riverfront,parks,The Arch, bridges,industrial buildings, recycling plants, tugboats, wildlife(deer, wild turkeys)
City part can be somewhat busy with tourists, runners, cyclists, workers and drivers. Lots of space to navigate though.
We made it to North Riverfront Park (11 miles or so) which has limited view of Chain of Rocks Bridge. I hear the trail is a little bit more difficult from this point, I will update whenever I do it though.
We rode from the Bollinger Trailhead lot north about 5 miles. This trailhead starts next to the Union Power and Steam building. The trail was paved but had some loose gravel dropped on small section from trucks. The first mile hada blend of cow manure and fertilizer smell. Then it cleared up and we had no more smells. It was neat watching the scrap metal being shredded and barges loaded as we rode. Made for a fun easy ride. After the trail we rode up around the Stadium and dome.
This is a wonderful train with a mix of industry and nature. Cycling past trains, loading cranes, and recycling plants with trees, wild turkeys, and of course, the mighty river. Mostly well maintained paved road that works for a road bike. Many groups of cyclists and joggers out and about. Very safe-even groups of Greenway guides and a cycling police officer. Will do again for sure!
Based on some of the other reviews, I didn't expect the trail to be this good! I really had a great time! Beautiful views of the river and surrounding area. I saw deer and turkey walking around! The trail is smooth and well maintained with rest areas every so many miles.
I didn't run across any glass, sticks or the like on the trail, but near the Riverfront Park parking lot, there was a bit of dried mud from the last flood, and a few scattered rocks near a construction company entrance, but nothing to worry about.
Go out and have a great time!
PS For some reason the Riverfront Park entrance was closed on Saturday afternoon!
A little rough for road bike. needs a little love due to flooding. Had a good time.
After reading some of the negative views, my husband and I were hesitant to try this trail. But, we just got back and loved it. We parked on the Illinois side of Chain of Rocks Bridge. During our ride, we never saw any gravel or broken glass on the trail, or cars parked ominously on it, or shady characters lurking somewhere either. And, we even saw a policeman riding a bike on it. We loved the scenery and the industrial sections, too. It seemed very safe and taken care of, not covered with debris. We encountered numerous other bikers and a few walkers. All were pleasant. We can't wait to ride it again soon. We felt very safe.
Don't waste time with it
We rode on the trail and there was a lot of gravel and glass on the trail and feared my tires would puncture. Some areas were not paved and of course all the cars that came on the trail- VERY ANNOYING. There were some people in their cars by the edge of the trail-not sure why they were there and it did not feel safe. I rode with my family and will not ride it again. Didn't see a lot of people riding seemed secluded and made me feel that not a lot of people ride the trail. I will not be riding this trail again- I was very disappointed.
I love this trail. But it seems lately there are a lot of cars driving on the bike path. Most people seem to be fishing. But yesterday when I was riding on the trail, there was an SUV simply parked right in the middle of the bike path, with two black male occupants just sitting there waiting. Not wanting any trouble I rode around the levee wall to avoid any trouble. My questions is why are cars allowed to drive on the bike path? It seems that the trail is getting dangerous because of that.
This trail is my favorite in St. Louis! There are a few challenging hills for beginner riders, but a majority of the trail is flat. The scenery is wonderful! Half nature and half industrial. I will definitely ride this trail regularly.
Fun and muddy ride. Part of the trail remains unfinished. So when it is wet, there's the chance that you and your bike will get pretty dirty. Kind of fragrant in some areas...haha...but a fun ride that is fairly scenic along the Mississippi. Be sure not to leave valuables in your vehicle at the trail head as I have heard stories of break in's. 23+ miles round trip...I'll be back for sure. Happy riding...!
The scenery along this trail ranges from the Chain of Rocks Bridge and historic Route 66 to the industrial remnants of St. Louis, including what was to be an artist's amusement park, left unfinished. At the Northern end of the trail, the going is a little tough as you are forced to make a very quick, fairly steep climb, but the majority of the trail is mostly level and an easy ride. The cyclist road crossing signals are especially nice as they are almost instantaneous.
This trail makes for a nice, relatively short day ride up and back (11 miles each way) or it can be used as part of a loop ride when combined with other area trails, roads or the Metrolink. I prefer to park my car on the Illinois side at the north end across the Chain of Rocks Bridge, where the parking lot is away from populated areas. Reduces potential for theft. I've also used this as part of loop rides. It connects to the Madison County Trail system via the Chain of Rocks Bridge on the north end or via the McKinley Bridge midway along the trail. The McKinley crossing allows for shorter access to the Horseshoe Lake area trail, after a few miles of city street riding on the Illinois side. It also connects directly to an MCT trail along the levee. On the southern end, I've continued a loop by riding across the Eads Bridge and riding through East St Louis or by catching the Metrolink eastbound at the Arch. For example, one can ride the Metrolink to the Memorial Hospital station where a new bike trail called the Metro Bike Link Trail starts and heads east for 7 miles to SWIC.
A real nice trail but I would not advise parking in the provided designated parking area as the bad guys have broken numerous car windows looking for wallets ect. Even though there is a camera mounted nearby it obviously isn't much of a deterrent. This is not to say that it's a guarantee that you will get robbed... as I have parked there numerous times and been ok....the safer bet is 1 block up the street next to the casino lot.
Well worth a look. I've ridden this trail several times and there's always something to see. You ride by the mountains of salt stockpiled for winter, junk yards, railroad yards, until recently the homeless town "Hope Village", the new bridge being built across the Mississippi and much much more! Make sure you take the trail to the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge and see the rapids up close! One of my favorite rides.
The Old Chain of Rocks Bridge was part of the renowned Route 66 and crosses a scenic stretch of the Mississippi River. It links two states—Illinois and ...
Caution: While construction continues on the new I-270 bridge over the Mississippi River, be alert for trail restrictions or closings north of the parking ...
Caution: Trail closures are occurring in two areas along the southern half of this trail: 1) near the construction site of the new I-270 bridge over the ...
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