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Level: Advanced
Length: 10 mi (16.1 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Network
Elevation: +348/ -345 ft
Total: 195 riders

Mountain Biking Swope Park Trail

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#1 of 169 mountain bike trails in Missouri
#41 in the world

Exquisitely built trail covering rocky and rooty sections along the hillside of Swope Park. The recently completed Phase 5 adds a series of progressive trail features including drops, jumps and bermed turns. Phase 6 should be completed by the end of 2014.

First added by Loftop on Sep 11, 2009. Last updated May 8, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: yes
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: yes
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
Map and description can be found at http://swopetrails.blogspot.com/ From 435 on the Missouri side of Kansas City, get off at the Gregory Blvd Exit. Go West into the Swope Park area. Gregory will swing to the south around a pond then come to an intersection. Go to your left onto Oldham Road and follow it back around to the East. Look for the Lodge sign on the left (north) and pull into the road. Parking is along the road just before the gate. The trail starts at the gate and goes east into the woods and up the hill.
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Swope Park Trail Trail map

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Local Info

Trail checkins

Ronin550 (on Apr 3, 2022)
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Trail conditions

Open (on Jun 19, 2020)
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Camping & Lodging

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Swope Park Trail videos

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Mountain Bike Trails Near Kansas City, Missouri

| 1 mi
Intermediate | 1 mi
Intermediate | 6 mi
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Rider questions

Q: Does this camp have any tent camping?

Q: How many miles is it

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  • SDGiant

    Great mix of flow and technical riding

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  • SwopeTrailGuy

    I don't bike on these trails, only run them, but I know enough to say that they are great for both. There are easier routes with fewer rocks, twists, and sharp inclines, and there are very technical routes for the brave.


    Please be aware that in the somewhat isolated, unmonitored trail parking lot there have be numerous vehicle break-ins. I wouldn't want this to be a deterrent to enjoying the trails, but you should keep this in mind when visiting. Don't leave valuables in plain sight, or in the vehicle at all if you can help it. And consider parking in the spaces adjacent to Oldham Rd, where there is more traffic, making your vehicle a less attractive target.

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  • lawmanfl

    Very nice and challenging trail. Very technical South nice drops. Very rocky, don't bring your carbon fiber and bring pads.

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  • nachoride

    What a blast! Like others have mentioned I have been lucky enough to ride all over the country and who knew there was a technical masterpiece in KC? Rocky with plenty of twists and turns make for a white knuckle ride.

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  • Benno!

    I often wind up riding Rancho to wind down after work. Lots of fun flowing trail and a couple of playgrounds to mess around on.

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  • SimonLewis

    I've been around the country and ridden hundreds of trails and this trail system has some of the most technical trails out there. If you want to become a good mountain biker in the woods this trail will definitely get you in the zone. Awesome for a trail bike such as a camber and a couple sections would be nice to have a stumpy fsr, but it's rideable on xc bikes no doubt!

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  • Midmoab

    My 17 year old son and I rode this on Saturday. It has been on oir list for over a year, but each time we were in the area it rained. This trail does not disappoint! The map available on the websit calls the lower blue trail "intermediate", which compared to other similarly rated trails, is an understatement. We ride quite a bit throughout mid Missouri and can definitely say that this is the most technical trail we have experienced in the state. With that said, the trail is rideable if you focus and take your time. It is also a blast! The upper green trail allows for plenty of turn out opportunities and is fast and flowing with few technical challenges. Summary: we loved this trail and hope to get back soon.

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  • cspargen

    Swope Park is a great track that combines sections of trail that flow well with other sections that test your technical prowess with rocks and roots. 8 Pin Alley and Sweet Luv are both located on the east end of the park and are a blast to ride. Sweet Luv has a DH only line with a succession of 3-4 foot drops. The locals reference 8 pin alley as a section that left one of the original builders with 8 pins in his arm after a crash. Whether that's local folklore or not, the tendency of that occurring is higher than most sections of trail you'll find in the good ole midwest.

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  • John Fisch

    Holy Massive Minefields of Ledgy Limestone, Batman, this is a tantalizingly techy trail! Rocks, rocks and more rocks. Rocks to step up and rocks to drop off. There are also some fast, buffed out areas, but this is the place to come and show your rock chops. Remember, momentum is your friend, especially in 8-Pin Alley.

    This is probably the best trail inside the beltway of any city big enough to have a beltway. Unfortunately, much of the trail is very close to that beltway and the noise of city traffic is your constant companion--put what's under your knobbies is positively prime.

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  • mongwolf

    Thanks for the great review Schmo. I had been wavering a bit about whether or not to target Swope as a ride when I travel back East sometimes. Now it is definitely on the trail wish list. Here is a link with a good map of the trails for those like myself who are new to the trail: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B_8740k2esMCRUdPR0JZZWlRRGc/edit?pref=2&pli=1

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  • KBarb

    Swope Park is an awesome trail. Hats off to the folks who designed and built it. I'd love to chip in and do my share sometime. Please message me if you know how I can get involved.

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  • [email protected]

    I really enjoy most parts of this trail. There are definitely parts that are well beyond my skill level though. That means a fair bit of hike a bike for me. Plenty of good flowey stuff to be found here too.

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  • Scott Cotter

    A funny thing happened on a recent trip to Swope. Though it wasn't THAT funny at all really. Just seemed weird that it all happened at once.

    On the trail I met a rescue party carrying a guy out who had crashed and injured his leg. Then I get to the trailhead and find a runner who had fallen and sliced her hand open. And shortly thereafter a woman I know came back down to the trailhead with a broken finger from a crash.

    I guess you could say Swope is a challenge. And it'll sucker punch you a good one if you're not careful. The reason 8 Pin is called 8 Pin is because one of the designer/builders of the trail -- who is an expert rider -- augered on the trail and the resulting break in his hand required 8 pins. Another funny story ... though not that funny ... I broke my hand on 8 pin. Damn rocks.

    Here's the thing. If your technical skills and form is up to snuff, the rocks, roots and chatter (or what seems like constant up and down) will flow pretty well for you. If you or your bike aren't ready, it feels like it doesn't flow in quite a few places because you'll be working so hard. But, trust me, it does flow. And it'll make you a much better rider.

    Thing is, slow down and focus and you can ride most of this. There are some long stretches of non-technical, beautifully flowy trail here. But there are enough step ups and chunky rock sections waiting to send you over the bars and into the limestone. Some of it very sharp.

    Swope will work for the less experienced. But it's absolute bliss for intermediate and more advanced riders wanting a good (hard) technical run.

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  • ITP78

    Lots of fun

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  • jrhamp

    Seriously love these trails. Something for everyone.

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  • mtb87

    Great diverse single track trails for beginners and for the advance riders in the heart of Kansas City. Includes nice sweeping trails, rocky technical sections, and climbs.

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  • Heartland Outside

    Thanks for all the feedback and votes! We have put a lot of time and hard work into these trails and it is really cool to hear everyone is digging it! To clarify Heartland Outside and its volunteers are responsible for design, construction and maintenance of Swope Park trails. Urban Trail Company has been a great partner over the years and carries the land agreement.
    If you like what is there, just wait, we have some awesome stuff coming down the pipe. We should have a few more miles opening up this summer, completing the Camp Lake of the Woods property. Check out the master plan and get the dirt at: www.swopetrails.com, www.heartlandoutside.org, and twitter @swopetrails.
    Thanks again! See ya'll on the trail.

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  • Nick Hopper

    Great ride and clearly marked trails. Well worth anyone's time no matter the skill level.

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  • *****

    Great diverse single track trails for beginners and for the advance riders in the heart of Kansas City. Includes nice sweeping trails, rocky technical sections, and climbs.

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  • tlongpine

    Complete trail system is ~11 miles now. It's a terrific mix of rollers, rocky tech sections, and short climbs.

    It's nothing to journey too, but it's certainly not a trail that disappoints. If you're passing through KC to points west it's worth a stop.

    Intermediate .

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