“A good mix of technical, intermediate and beginner trail that are in a rural setting.
— Ben Bolin
This system is great for the beginner to intermediate rider that has the MTB bug. Great for advanced riders as well, you just need to ride it faster or on singlespeed and it becomes a very challenging course.
Over all the trail system is fast and flowy. There are about 2 miles of moderate tech trails and the rest just flows and prompts for fast riding.
Beginners would take the east trails (TNT) by taking a left off the asphalt trail at the trailhead. If you are looking for the more technical trials then take a right onto Lakeside Speedway
that will split into Neale's Trail
The entire trail system can be ridden in one big loop which is 11.4 miles in length. Go right and stay right or go left and stay left to cover the entire system without much navigational error.
Trail status can be found on forums.earthriders.com under Smithville Lake Trails or follow @KCTrailStatus on Twitter.
Horses and motorized vehicles not allowed. Closed on various weeks during the fall and winter for managed deer hunts.
Need to Know
Parking at the Smoke N Davey Trailhead off of W highway is free. Parking at the Sailboat Cove Trailhead is $5 if the gate guards are on duty. There are bathrooms at the Smoke N Davey and Sailboat Cove Trailhead.
Nearest town: Smithville, MO
Directions from nearest town: Travel North through Smithville for about 4 miles on 169 Highway. Turn right (East) on "W" Highway, and travel to the bridge over the lake. Keep traveling east on "W" Highway a few hundred feet to a paved parking lot on the right.
Trail location from the parking lot:
Go south on the paved trail to trailhead, you can go West into Lakeside Speedway
and Neale's Trail
, East into T-N-T
, or South on the County walking trail.
Alternate: Travel further on W to Paradise, turn right on Paradise Road and continue into "Sailboat Cove." Park in the first spaces on the right (immediately behind the fee shack), and bike over the hill in front of the cars. This trailhead enters at Stan's Southside
To get to the trail entrances from the Smoke and Davey parking lot, just ride down the paved trail where you'll find signs for the trailhead. There you'll find Lakeside and Neale's to the right (west) with the TNT entrance to the left (east).
Going right onto the west side trails will send you into the most technical features of the system in the first 3 miles of riding. The technical aspects are logs, creek crossings and baby head rock gardens with some off camber rocky sections on Neale's Trail
to finish out the technical part. All is still moderate level rider abilities to get through it. After the first 3 or so miles the system is all fast flowy tight woods trail with dirt, roots and rocks sprinkled in at various places. There are no long sustained climbs or downhills as most of the terrain is rolling.
This trail system is most commonly ridden west side first. The saying for directions is, "Go right, stay right or go left, stay left." That will get you around the system with little error.
The system is a favorite for people just cutting their teeth on singletrack since there is some challenge without much penalty. The advanced riders love railing this trail system in sub-hour laps for an outstanding rush of adrenaline and cardio workout. If it's not technical enough for you then just ride it faster. The tight tree lined trails at full speed kick up the tech level.
History & Background
This system is one of the first ERTA trails in the area. It was started in 2000 and has grown to over 12 miles of singletrack trail so far. The system is near capacity for trails with possibly another 1-2 miles possible to build out. New trails and reroutes have recently been established to make it even more user friendly