So our last child is going to college. You would think this is mid-life crisis time but neither one of us wants to buy the red convertible. We bought a different kind of ride — bikes! We are now on a quest to explore the Midwest (U.S.?) on two wheels. We live in the southern part of the city that has countless wooded, paved trails. I love being outdoors but I’ve got to admit that an urban ride is a lot more interesting. Here is where we went.
1. We rode on the Trolley Track Trail, the site of the last streetcar line in Kansas City. We parked in a lot outside The Well in the Waldo area — we were one of several cars with bike racks — and picked up the trail there. The next time we do this trail, we will probably start in Brookside because we had to contend with a few busy streets to cross from Waldo into Brookside.
2. The trail drops off and picks up just past the shops in Brookside. This is where the trail is particularly lovely. We drove past lovely stone churches, through old city parks and past bungalow, cottage-type homes in Brookside. (Did I mention that I would love to live in Brookside?)
3. From Brookside, we drove past the edge of the UMKC Campus and on down to the Plaza. The Plaza section of the trail runs along Brush Creek. The view is lovely but the cleanliness of the water? Not so much. (That’s my bike companion, also known as husband, in the photo.)
4. We traveled along Brush Creek, then turned around and went up the hill to the Plaza Library, where we locked up the bikes. Then we ate lunch outdoors at The Mixx, a great restaurant across the parking lot. I had the Garden of Eden salad with chicken, cranberries, (hold the Gorgonzola cheese) with a champagne vinaigrette and a whole-grain roll. Amazing! Wish we could have taken the leftovers home on the bike.
5. Then we spent time in the Plaza Library cooling off. In addition to an amazing view of the Plaza, the library has some fascinating exhibits. One was a photo exhibit of the architectural firm, Hare and Hare, that designed much of Kansas City … the Country Club Plaza, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art’s original building, much of the Sunset Hill Neighborhood … and on and on.
6. From there we headed back to Brookside and stopped for iced coffee at the Roasterie. From there, we headed back.
For a list of other great bike trails in the KC area, visit Trails/KCBike.Info or just keep following our blog. We plan to cover them all so stay tuned — and I promise to take more photos.