Day 2 Sunday
FIRST! Breakfast on your own OR with the meal plan, then ride to the "Stars & Stripes" military museum in Stoddard County, Missouri.
After taking time to "fuel up" with the meal plan breakfast, today's route will take you to the Stars & Stripes newspaper military museum. We've made special arrangements for you to tour the facility. Recognizing the contributions of the famous military newspaper, the museum also has exhibits on many other aspects of American defense and the soldiers that have provided it.
THEN! Head back to the campsite in Sikeston, have dinner at a local restaurant (nationally famous Lambert's, "home of throwed rolls" suggested), or partake of our popular trip to "The Riverhouse" wine place offering a spectacular view on the banks of the Mississippi River. Dinner available there if you wish. Limited reservations for this trip available during check-in on Saturday.
Bike tour ride through parts of 3 states in just 7 days!
Day 5 Wednesday
FIRST! After breakfast, ride the hilliest route of the week to Columbus-Belmont Civil War battlefield-49 miles
A route northward to one of Kentucky's most popular state historic sites, location of one of the earliest battles of the Civil War. Nicknamed "The Gibraltar of the West" for its strategic location on the river bluffs, you'll be able to tour a museum, see trenches where the troops took cover, and examine the huge anchor chain used to block boats traveling downriver, as well as many other artifacts. Check out the spectacular view of the Mississippi River, highlighting again the strategic significance of the site. Two choices for lunch: FIRST-a snack bar right in the park: SECOND-a restaurant you'll pass by just outside the park exit in the tiny hamlet of Columbus. This paved route has a couple of moderate hills just outside the park entrance. Alternate gravel routes will be offered, river level permitting.
NEXT! Return to Fulton County High School in Hickman.
Shower and relax until time for the 6 PM evening meal. Non-meal plan participants may drive to your choice of Union City restaurants.
LAST! Informational meeting for the Thursday & Friday Tennessee routes at 7:30 PM.
Daily itineraries for 2024 tour will be announced mid-December.
FIRST! Check-in at Sikeston, Missouri overnight site at the YMCA, 510 Taylor St. 11 AM-4 PM Saturday June 17.
Set up your outdoor tent or indoor campsite; if you check-in before 1 PM, you may choose to ride a short introductory route in the immediate area.
THEN! After 4 PM, visit the Hot Air Balloon Festival and enjoy food trucks, beer (and wine) garden, live music, tethered balloon rides, and twilight "balloon glow"!
LAST! Orientation meeting for the week at the YMCA overnight site at 8:30 PM.
Day 3 Monday
FIRST! Pack up your gear, have breakfast, then take a short 30 mile "wake-up" ride through area farming country.
NEXT! Have an early "farewell to Sikeston" lunch at the Sikeston eatery of your choice, then drive to Hickman, KY, where from 2 PM-5 PM the residents will show you the best of southern hospitality on the local history tour! This is our most talked about tour because it includes........free tasting of fresh-baked homemade cakes! Set up your campsite at Fulton County High School either when you arrive in town or after you take the tour.
Climb to the top of the century-old courthouse and take a look at the still-functioning Seth-Thomas mechanical "hand-wound" clock, one of only 4 remaining. Stop in at "Kentucky Kernel" nut company and vacuum-pack your own souvenir can of "Munchin' Pecans". Finish with a tour of the period Coulson family home, with free slices of freshly baked cakes! Each year this is our most-talked-about tour!!
LAST! Set up your camp if you didn't earlier, then get ready for the meal plan dinner 6:00-7:30 PM in the cafeteria followed at 8 PM by an expert speaker on the history and causes of the great New Madrid fault earthquakes of 1811-1812.
Day 6 Thursday
FIRST! A farewell to Hickman breakfast; then pack your gear and drive about 45 minutes to the final overnight location in Newbern, TN. Set up your campsite indoors or out, jump on your bike and take a moderate length loop ride to Full Throttle Saloon!
Today's route will take you to the small town of Trimble, Tennessee, home to the Full Throttle Saloon and Distillery. Here, if you're so inclined, you can taste real hill country moonshine and some Tennessee whiskey! Take a tour of the production facilities. Wanna take some home? We can bring it back to the campsite for you in one of the support vans! There's a diner just down the block for lunch.
NEXT! Your loop route will bring you back to the campsite in Newbern.
Have a shower and relax until meal time.
LAST! Drive to your choice of nearby Dyersburg (or Newbern-there are a couple) restaurants.
MIDWEST CYCLOTOURING bicycle tour presents: Ride the Fault Line
Day 4 Tuesday
FIRST! Begin riding to New Madrid, Missouri by cycling a short distance to the ferry to cross the river.
Stop off for the meal plan breakfast on your way to the ferry. Once on the Missouri side of the river, cycle through river bottomlands that are some of the most productive farmland in the U.S. Weather and river levels permitting, there will be an alternate gravel route to ride on top of the river levee.
NEXT! Arrive in New Madrid, Missouri, namesake community of our tour!
Here you'll find a comprehensive museum featuring earthquake and river lore, an Antebellum period home to tour at the Hunter-Dawson state historic site, a restored 1800's era one-room schoolhouse, and a river observation deck. There will also be lunch options for the day here.
LAST! Reverse course and return to our overnight home at Fulton County High School in Hickman.
OR choose the longer 74-mile return option if you need more mileage! Just remember to allow time for a shower before the meal plan dinner is served at 6:30, then a speaker with information on tomorrow's ride to the Columbus-Belmont civil war battlefield at 7:30 PM.
Day 7 Friday
FIRST! Meal plan breakfast at Farmhouse Kitchen in Newbern, two blocks from the overnight site.
After breakfast, you'll leave the outskirts of Newbern and cycle northwest on the longest and final route of the week toward the first rest stop of the day at the Dew Drop Church. Continuing on, the route takes you along the scenic Bluff Road, dividing line between the Mississippi River floodplain and the west Tennessee hills. On your left, check out the acres and acres of vegetables being grown, possibly for your table, by Pict-Sweet farms. Soon, you'll arrive at the lakeside Spicer Park rest stop in Samburg, with outstanding views of Reelfoot Lake, which was created by the earthquakes of 1811-1812.
NEXT! Continue along Lakeside Drive, dotted with summer fishing and vacation cabins and homes.
Several restaurants will beckon to you for lunch. The Boathouse in Samburg and Blue Bank resort restaurant both have lakeside decks. Watch for areas along the lakeshore that were heavily damaged by the December, 2021 tornado. You'll be able to stop in at the state park visitor center, browse the exhibits on the great earthquakes and area wildlife, and if you have time, enjoy paddling through the cypress trees in a canoe or kayak while on the lookout for nesting bald eagles! After lunch you return to Newbern through mostly flat river floodplain. Today's route takes you very close to, and in places directly over, the New Madrid Fault line, so be prepared to hold on to your helmet!!
LAST! Return to Dyersburg/Newbern in time for a shower.
Dinner in Newbern at the Farmhouse Kitchen; or drive yourself to the Full Throttle Saloon in Trimble for food trucks and live music! Your Ride the Fault experience concludes first thing Saturday morning.