Cyclists make 21-mile winter trek to buy Wabash Trace trail passes

Cyclists make 21-mile winter trek to buy Wabash Trace trail passes
Photo Courtesy: Scott Redd

On a warm summer’s day, there’s little that can beat a bicycle ride down the Wabash Trace in Iowa.

There’s ice cream and barbecue to be had, farmers markets, music and margaritas as the trail winds through the countryside from Council Bluffs to the Missouri border.

So it’s no surprise that the trail is beloved by cyclists.

And that affection showed Sunday when area cyclists biked 21 miles round trip from downtown Omaha to the Council Bluffs trailhead to purchase their annual trail pass.

Sure, the annual $20 trail pass can be mailed in, but bicycling there is more fun, said Omahan Scott Redd, who organizes the annual ride.

About 25 people participated.

The Wabash Trace Nature Trail, a converted rail bed, is 63 miles long and passes through several southwest Iowa towns. It can be reached from Omaha via the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge and a network of trails in Council Bluffs.

“I love the Wabash,” Redd said as he listed some of the trail’s attributes. “It’s so long and continuous — you can start at Bob (Kerrey) Bridge and ride all the way to Missouri.”

The trail is operated by a nonprofit, so it can’t depend on taxpayer funding, and that makes supporting it more important, Redd said.