Up and Down the Lazy River (Cup O’ Dirt Metric #2)

My second ride in the 2017 Cup O’ Dirt Challenge is in the books, a 68-miler in the Neosho River bottoms. After a week of mostly dreary weather — cold, gray, wind — Sunday promised sunshine, mild temperatures, and light wind. It delivered.

I set out on a route that headed west of the Neosho River, north to Leroy, then back south to Iola on the east side of the river. The route took me alongside the Neosho several times, and the water was just rolling lazily along. Always a nice sight, especially in the middle of winter and its ever-present shades of brown.

I ended up with 68 miles at a modest pace. View my route here.

This is a 1921 concrete culvert on the former Missouri Pacific Railroad, between Iola and Piqua.
Stopped to find a geocache at a country cemetery near Piqua.
Pausing along the winding river to take in the view.
A Woodson County dirt road in the Neosho bottoms.
Passing beneath a railroad trestle near the town of Leroy.
The gravel road peters out … continue, or turn back?
I continued on the overgrown path, and found a damaged bridge. Part of it had collapsed, and the county just closed the road rather than fix it. It was passable by bike, though.
In the flat bottomlands east of the river, I encountered several low-water crossings. I was able to ride through some, but this one was just too much. I ended up finding a detour through the woods a bit downstream.
DirtBum Written by:

I enjoy riding bicycles all over -- city streets, suburbia, rural roads, gravel roads, dirt roads, rail-trails, and singletrack. I love exploring the countryside and finding the interesting and historical treasures hidden in plain sight. You can follow my rides on Strava.


  1. Clayton
    February 7, 2017

    Once again you make the commonplace appear mysterious and intriguing through your camera lens and your dexterous use of language. Another great job depicting Kansas as the bicycle adventure destination it has the potential to be!

    • February 7, 2017

      Thanks for the kind words!

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