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Level: Intermediate
Length: 14 mi (22.5 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Loop
Elevation: +542/536 ft
Total: 83 riders

Mountain Biking Binder Lake

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#5 of 168 mountain bike trails in Missouri
#349 in the world

There are 4 different trails to choose from ranging in a variety of skill levels. The blue and green trails are probably the most traveled, but still very well maintained. There are all kinds of switchbacks, short climbs, creek crossings, etc. If you bike all the trails it equals close to 11 miles. Great place to ride!!!!

First added by mstacey79 on Nov 15, 2009. Last updated May 3, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: yes
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: yes
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: yes
  • Fat bike grooming: yes
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
From downtown Jefferson City, take Hwy 50 West to the Apache Flats exit merging right. Stay on that road for a couple of miles until you see Binder Lake Road. As you enter you'll see some softball fields the park entrance, etc. Go straight. When you hit the T in the road, go left and follow the road around the lake. Park at the bait shop and the trail head is right across the street.
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Binder Lake Trail map

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Local Info

Trail checkins

CFM (on Jul 9, 2020)
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Upcoming Events

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Trail conditions

Dry (on Sep 24, 2020)
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Camping & Lodging

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Binder Lake videos

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Mountain Bike Trails Near Jefferson City, Missouri

Easiest | 238 mi
Intermediate | 4 mi

Rider questions

Q: How well does this trail dry? I will be in Columbia the week between Christmas and New years and I would like to ride here but, I don't want to damage the trail if it will still be sloppy.
A: Wow, things have changed quickly! We got some rain last night and are now expecting rain Tuesday and Wednesday. The long range forecast is for a good chance of rain through the weekend. I would say bring your bike and if its too wet take a spin on the KATY or MKT trail as a fall back option.

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  • JoshStroud

    Had a lot of fun with beginner rider
    Ditched him to explore more and enjoyed ride around lake. More trails to ride for next time!

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  • addy87

    I need to lower a couple other trail reviews....

    Nicely marked trails, well kept, nice scenery and lots of challenges. That bridge featured in the photo section is 18" wide. Another one was only 12"wise but it was short.

    Riding the Green and Blue trails, there are some jumps, a double, a couple table tops, some berms and several narrow tree gaps. There are also several creek drops and then there are the climbs with roots, rocks and then roots and rocks. Those were the most challenging because of all the loose stuff. Not unmanageable, just challenging.

    The trails are all accurately named so you know what you're getting in to. Riding both the Green and Blue gave me 9 miles on my odometer.

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  • JT0114

    Great Trail! Very well maintained!

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  • battlebeetle

    Great trail with lots of miles of riding to be found. Fairly technical in places but not too challenging for a beginner. Mostly flat with a few minor climbs.

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  • walker87a

    Best trail system I've found in mid missouri

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  • Midmoab

    We rode the yellow loop. Weather was a bit hot and humid making for some of the rock areas a bit slick. This is a great trail with a variety of obstacles to enjoy. The first 3/4 of the trail is a good balance of climbs and short downhills with very little without some sort of technical aspect. Combinations of roots and rocks in areas of tight switchbacks, small stream crossings, and trees on the edge of the trail make this a fun pick-n-ride area. The last 1/4 of the ride has little elevation but is on the lake edge packed with roots and rocks where a wrong turn may end up with a cool swim. Overall very fun.

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  • orizaba

    Four distinct trails, from beginner to advanced. Plenty of challenges for any level of rider.

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  • sotoutdoors.com

    It is a great trail to ride for intermediate riders. It has smooth single track with some wooden obstacles, the north yellow loop in the far side if the lake is technical and very rooty. there are four loops, the blue and the green connect together to make a big loop while the red and yellow take separate rides to get to. The blue and green are easier while the red and yellow are shorter but require some more skills. Great place to ride for a couple hours.

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  • Mkcollins756

    I am pretty new to MTN Biking and chose to do this trail to learn a few things. I was told that the Green Trail was for noobs so I started there. Its a pretty nice trail with some decent up hill and quick downhill. there were a few mud pits that I didn't expect to see with the dry weather we've had lately but they were there. The trail gets used pretty regularly as I see lots of people at the trailhead every time I go there. Everyone is friendly and helpful. I can't wait to graduate to the blue trail next.

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  • cycleforfun

    I rode the blue and green trails with someone who has been riding them for years. The trails are wonderfully maintained and combine beginning and intermediate challenges. There are some narrow bridges which challenge the balance of a beginner on a mountain bike and some fairly smooth but steep gully dips and climbs which are good for positioning and shifting training for a beginner. There is plenty of fun on both of these trails. I didn't try the red trail as it touts as advanced.

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  • David A. Woodruff

    This was the best trail I've been on for my skill level. I was a high school athlete - but that was 20 years ago. No I'm 25lbs overweight, I grab the breaks on most downhills, and 'obstacles' are usually 'stop and push-tackles'.
    Here I was able to pedal through most everything, clear the obstacles, and enjoy the man-made bridges and ramps.
    This trail really helped build my confidence and I feel like this is one that could be a lot of fun building some speed and skill on.

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  • Greg Miller

    My wife and I rode the Green Loop this evening after work. Nice flowing trail with fun climbing and features. You can tell the folks here do a lot to keep this trail in great shape. We normally ride for fitness and thought we would give this a try. Glad we did. Thank you to the folks that provide this great resource!

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  • Helena Kotala

    Great trails with a little bit of everything! Mostly flowy, with some rock gardens, roots, loose descents, bridges and log piles mixed in. Mostly rolling, with a couple short, steeper ascents and descents. I stopped on my way through on a road trip and got a good 2 hour ride in. Despite no actual trail signs, trails were well-marked with arrows and I had no trouble finding my way. I took a picture of the map at the trailhead just in case but never needed to use it. Trails were very well-maintained---thanks guys!

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  • stmshovel

    tlongpine, please go work on a trail once and then you will have the beginnings of an educated opinion about what makes a well built/maintained multi-use trail. Your taking a star because an educated trail user calls you out on your immaturity only confirms their statement. Please just stick to commuting to class and stay off of the trails during bad conditions. Remember, someone has to fix what you screw up.

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  • Starling

    I hike these trails (weather permitting). The bikers are always kind when we pass each other. For a quick hike I take the green trail (can do a loop in 30 min). But most of the time I head onto the Blue or Yellow. The yellow trail is the most challenging trail at Binder and the most scenic. Going along the lake at sunset is magnificent. There are ticks here in the summer so wear repellant.

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  • tlongpine

    *rolls eyes*

    Taking a star away from my review b/c the locals are hostile clowns.

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  • tlongpine


    Take a chill-pill, angry internet man.

    I ran the trail on foot last week when the ground was frozen solid. And yeah, the trail has seen some abuse this winter.

    It appears that you're out there about every other day or so based on your check-ins, so maybe I'll just cast accusations at you.

    Based on your pictures of Bangert Island Trail, this wouldn't be your first offense. Stay off the trail, Sheriff. It's wet and you're destroying it.

    There's similar (worse actually) trail abuse at Rock Bridges. I blame the proximity to concentrated populations of MU grads.

    Rock Chalk Jayhawk.

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  • 11lance77

    Very twisty, a couple technical spots. Awesome trails!

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  • *****

    Rode the west side of the lake for the first times and then a few more last week. Great trails, fun to ride. They dry out quickly after rain and have a mix of levels. Some one has spent tons of time out there armoring the creeks-and there a lot of them-A blast! Didn't see a sole in 3 evenings.

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  • stmshovel

    Now closer to 15 miles of singletrack. 13.5 miles of sweet, twisty, tight, singletrack for riders of all levels. BLT-Binder Lake Trail because like a BLT everybody loves it and its oh so satisfying.

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