Missouri Life magazine announces two new routes for 2018 for its Big BAM (Bicycle Across Missouri) tours. Missouri’s only cross-state bicycle tour, Big BAM has been in north Missouri in the past three years and offered only one ride per year.
Big BAM on Route 66 will be June 17-22, 2018, and hundreds of cyclists will ride 312 miles beginning in Joplin, overnighting in Willard, Lebanon, Waynesville, Cuba, and joining the finish party in Eureka. Big BAM on the Katy Trail will be Oct. 7-12, 2018 and begin in Clinton, with overnights in Sedalia, Boonville, Jefferson City, Hermann and end in St. Charles after riding about 240 miles.
Both Big BAMs are unique events, offering cyclists special rest and water stops as they cross the state, tents and live music and other entertainment at overnight host and pass-through towns, as well as camping services, luggage moving, shower trucks, SAG (support-and-gear) service, food vendors, and more. In 2017, about 600 cyclists crossed Missouri, and the same number or more is anticipated for Route 66 BAM. The Katy BAM is limited to 500 riders. In past years, host towns have gone all out to welcome riders, with special events, art displays, and special vendor booths, for example.
The event is like a festival on two “wheels.” says Greg Wood, publisher of Missouri Life and Big BAM director. “There are a lot of moving parts, but the cyclists are the friendliest people in the world, always encouraging each other onward. And there’s plenty of time to explore the small towns along the way. It’s a ride, not a race.”
He adds, “We’re glad to add BAM onto the Katy Trail as well. We’ve been approached by several communities on the trail to bring BAM to the trail, the longest rails-to-trails project in the country, since we first started BAM in 2015. It will be the same fun music and parties after a day of riding that the road BAM cyclists enjoy, but without any hills.”
Big BAM on the Katy is being planned as an annual event.
Riders can choose between week-long passes and one or multiple day passes to use the BAM services.
For more information, visit, bigbamride.com.