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Reply to status of entire traile - just this week

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Reply to status of entire traile - just this week
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Paul from Lincoln, NE on 6/3/2012 2:28:29 PM:
I sent in a post earlier last week asking for status of trail. Well I found out first hand. myself with 6 other guys started in Valentine. Best part of trip was the bridge just outside of Valentine. Trail then went to "heck" three words to describe the trail conditins....terrible...terrible...terrible. Bumpy, washboard, tractor tire ruts, animal tracks destroyed the trail. Keep in mind we are 7 guys that bike a lot, so we are not new to trails. we all had slime, I had tire liners and slime and most of us still got multiple flat tires. We had lunch in Johnstown. Trail was so bad we road highway most of the time. First night we stayed in Basset. Great campground right in the Fairgrounds, with a donation box. We were all so happy for a hot shower we gave extra donations. Road to Newport for breakfast at Sunny's second morning. Road then to Atkinson for lunch on second day. STOP AT RHONDA'S FOR LUNCH. very best food EVER..we didn't want to leave. Road on to O'neil and stayed night. Camped at part just south of trail. Had somewhat of a hot shower there. Third day- kept riding, and outside of Ewing exactly sure where but there will be a sign that says Trail Closed to the Public. Believe this sign....you keep riding and there is no trail....we had to turn around and head back and get on the highway. Had lunch in Tilden. Now on to Norfolk, saw another sign that said Trail Closed to Public. We believed it this time, we asked some locals and they gave us directions around the bridge that the Lincoln Journal Star says was put in and operational. We got to Norfolk, and that was it. I will add more as I think of it. But pretty dissappointed on how and why the state or whom ever let the trail get into such bad shape. All along the trail, there was not reallyk a town that "welcomed" bikers or tried to cator to cyclists. Again, big opportunities missed here by the state and the small towns along the way. But as I finish this, we had a great time, hangin

 
Levi from New York, NY on 6/12/2012 9:11:11 AM:
I am biking the country right now and am in Omaha. I want to go to Deadwood, SD so was thinking of taking the Cowboy Trail. I hear everything you are saying about the trail conditions, but how are the roads nearby the trail. I am guessing you were on 20. Is that okay to ride on. Any advice you have would be helpful as I am on my own and thousands of miles from home

 
Rob from Lincoln on 6/14/2012 4:17:42 PM:
Hi Levi,

I just got back from the Cowboy Trail a couple weeks ago. I did end up taking Highway 20 from Valentine to Bassett. The highway is great. Minimal hills and good to great shoulders. Definitely recommended. The trail pretty much runs parrallel with the highway so you could bounce back and fourth if you feel one or the other is not to your liking.

 
Denver on 6/20/2012 11:20:22 PM:
Thanks for confirming. Was planning an end-to-end Cowboy trip this summer, did KATY last year. Due to little feedback on the trail, and discouraging reports of conditions, did the Allegheny-C&O trail instead. Amazing journey. If Nebraska doesn't want the visitors, other states are very successful in gaining support.

 
Michele from Omaha on 7/1/2012 5:35:45 PM:
My two cents about the trail. We arrived in Norfolk on a Saturday afternoon, hoping to ride to Battle Creek and back for a short ride. Not possible, there is a bridge out so our ride was less than 12 miles round trip. Very disappointed and unfortunately, it didn't get much better. The next day we decided to start in Tilden, thinking we would head west to Clearwater and back, and if we wanted to go longer we would keep going east toward Meadow Grove and back. That didn't happen either! You can't get to Clearwater from Neligh and probably never will again. The bridge was washed out and if you look at an aerial map, you'll see that about 5 miles of the trail was also washed out. Our total mileage that day was 36 miles and for me, that was plenty. The trail was rough and not maintained at all. In the Oakdale area, there is pink crushed rock on a long stretch that made biking extremely difficult. Next to the trail is a concrete / crushed rock dealer, so I guess he has used the trail for his waste? Not sure, but hated it.

The Cowboy Trail could be a real jewel through the state but I fear it will simply be left to deteriorate until there's nothing left. Our Governor and legislators will NEVER make it a priority and I find it sad that such a great tourist attraction is going to waste.

I just wish the Cowboy Trail would not be represented as this long continuous trail across Nebraska, because it's not, and I feel sorry for bikers who plan their vacations around riding the entire trail. You can't do it and if I was coming from out of state, I would be extremely disappointed.

 
Colorado riders from Fruita Colorado on 7/2/2012 9:00:06 PM:
We sit enjoying the beautiful Nebraska sunset at Neligh and find ourselves in full agreement. Nebraska needs to develop their diamond in the rough. The folks along the Katy and the Gap have it dialed in. Let's not just talk to each other at this forum, but also make contacts to any town and state official and rail trail organization that will listen. We get what we are willing to work hard for and support.

 
Crow from Lincoln, Ne on 8/14/2012 8:17:01 AM:
Thank you for all your comments. I was on the trail in early spring and it was terrible. Then I saw numerous articles that the trail was open, the surface redone and the bridges finished. I guess not! I was also planning a long trip on the Cowboy Trail and now will do the Katy or the Wabash in Iowa. What a sad waste of a what could be a beautiful trail and a boon to the small towns along the trail. What a waste!