Join me on a Bike Tour in 2018

Missouri: Day 2 – Assembling The Bikes

By Darren Alff on - Download my FREE bike tour starter guide!

During my second day in the state of Missouri, Josh and I decided that we would wait a day until heading out on the Katy Trail. It had rained all night long and the trail was most certainly a wet and sticky mess. So we decided to give it a day and hang out in town.

With the whole day now free, we spent much of the time assembling our bikes, talking about our high school days, and discussing our goals, dreams and plans for the future.

Josh had purchased a new Giant hybrid bicycle before I arrived in the state, and I brought with me a rack from my old touring bike for Josh to use on our upcoming journey. I had Josh help me install the rack… and then I helped him adjust the height of his handlebars so they were at a more comfortable level.

Because we planned to do so much walking on our trip, we both decided to use toe clips to help us with our cycling efforts. These clips would also allow us to wear regular shoes while on our bike, which meant carrying only a single pair of shoes on the journey and walking in comfort once we were off the bikes.

I was also sent a number of different bicycle bells from the Mirrycle Corporation in Boulder, Colorado. So, I gave one to Josh to test out and use on our trip. I’ll post the review of this particular bell (The Incredibell Omnibell) at some point in the near future.

After getting Josh’s handlebars, rear rack, bell and toe clips in place, we mounted his bike with a brand new set of yellow Arkel XM-45 panniers. With Josh’s massive size 15 shoes, we had to make sure the heel of his foot did not rub up against the front of the panniers. But the Arkel panniers excelled in this regards. With a small adjustment, we were able to move the panniers back on the rack and Josh’s feet were free to rotate without interruption.

Riding for the first time with a set of panniers, Josh pulled a wheelie on his new bike while I snapped some photos.

Then I took Josh’s bike for a ride. Compared to my little red folding bicycle, his bike felt absolutely gigantic. But it always feel good to ride a brand new bicycle. Boy was that thing smooth!

After completing the set up of Josh’s bike, we whipped out his little purple moped and rode it around the block a couple of times.

I’ve just recently purchased a Kawasaki KLR 650 motorcycle and have been learning to ride over the past several months, so being able to zip around on a little 49 c moped was a lot of fun. Not having to manually change gears was nice as well! I wish my Kawasaki were an automatic.

After getting my fix for motorized vehicles, it was time to put together my bicycle – a Bike Friday New World Tourist.

I had flown my bike out with me – packed inside it’s travel case. I had used this bike last year when traveling through Europe for nine months, and this would be the first time I had used it since returning last September. But mini trips such as this are exactly why I bought this bike in the first place. The bike flew for free to Missouri and it would work perfectly for my short adventure on the famous Katy Trail.

Using a new bike pump that had been sent to me for review by Axiom Performance Gear, I pumped up my tires and asked Josh is he wanted to ride around town before it got too dark.

So, after both our bikes had been assembled, we loaded up and took off on a short ride around the town of Marshall.

Josh took me into the center of the city, where I posed for this photo in the city square.

Then we went to Jim the Wonder Dog Memorial Garden – a small, but beautiful park located just outside of the city square.

As it got dark and started to rain, we circled back around town, through the city park, over a bridge and back to Josh’s home. The following day, we would begin our adventure on Missouri’s Katy Trail.

Stay tuned as we begin our Katy Trail bike trip in the city of Sedalia and head southwest toward the tiny town of Windsor, Missouri. My next post… coming very, very soon!

About Darren Alff

My goal as the Bicycle Touring Pro is to give you the confidence and inspiration you need to travel by bicycle anywhere in the world. I do all of the work on this website by myself. Since 2007, all of the articles, books, emails, interviews, photos, podcasts and videos have been created by me in my spare time. Thanks to the generous donations I receive from readers like you, I'm able to focus on creating regular, high-quality content; invest further in developing the website; and cover the costs related to my bicycle touring activities.

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