Bagnell Dam Loop + ADD NEW ROUTE
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This route begins in the little town of Stover, MO. Stover is located on Hwy 52, between Cole Camp and Versailles. From Sedalia, take Hwy 65 to Hwy 52E exit, head east through Cole Camp, until you reach Stover. Be sure to fill the tank in Stover, the gas will be more expensive at the lake. Leave Stover via Hwy 52 east, heading towards Versailles. When you reach Versailles, turn south onto Hwy 5, immediately begin looking for West Clay Rd. It will be on the left side of the road (I miss it every time). Turn left onto Clay Rd, this turns into Hwy W. You won't want to miss this one, Hwy W is a joy to ride. You are going to travel Hwy W all the way down to Bagnell Dam. You will cross the dam on Bagnell Dam Blvd. Here you will find several places to stop and eat. We got a burger at Wise Guys, it was pretty good. The burger was hot and the tea was cold. While you are here, I highly recommend you stop in and visit the Leather Man store. When you are ready to head back, continue on Bagnell Dam Blvd until you come to Hwy MM. Turn right onto Hwy MM and travel across the lake, continuing on until the road stops at the intersection of Hwy TT. Here, you should turn left onto Hwy TT and continue until you reach Hwy 5. Head north on Hwy 5 for a short ride, until you are able to turn off onto Hwy 135. Here we traveled north on Hwy 135 all the way back to Stover.
This route gives the rider a little taste of what the Missouri ozarks has to offer, as we ride into the northeast side of the Lake of the Ozarks. The fun really starts on Hwy W as you leave Versailles. The scenery that Hwy W has to offer is typical of the northern Missouri Ozarks. Here you will find lots of fast hills and tight turns. Respect this road though, some of the turns are quick. Hwy W twists and turns, winding along down to Bagnell Dam Blvd. Bagnell Dam Blvd, crosses over the dam, slow down here so you can get a quick look at the lake. After you cross the dam, you will be able to stop and take a walk along the strip. While you are here be sure to visit the Leather Man store. They have a lot of cool stuff there, and the staff are very friendly. When we visited last, we picked up lunch at Wise Guys sandwich shop. It was a short walk down the hill from the Leather Man shop. When you are ready to move on, just continue on Bagnell Dam Blvd. You will come to Hwy MM. Turn right onto Hwy MM, and cross over the lake. The bridge crossing here is high above the water and presents an impressive view from both sides. Hwy MM winds along, presenting lots of fun curves and great views. Hwy MM will stop at the intersection of Hwy TT. Here you should turn left onto Hwy TT and travel until you reach the intersection of Hwy 5. Hwy TT is a lot like Hwy MM, presenting lots of curves and splendid views. While traveling though the lake area, be very cautious and keep an eye out for traffic. While traveling though here, we had the drivers that pulled out in front of us while coming through the curves. Once you are on Hwy 5 you really have two options to get back to the starting point. Hwy 5 will take you all the way back to Versailles. We chose to take Hwy 135 back to Stover. Hwy 135 has plenty of curves and hills as well. Here you will see lots of fields, cattle and other wildlife. Hwy 135 has a few gravel roads that intersect it, so use caution and anticipate some gravel on the pavement, mostly on the right side of you lane. All in all, I really enjoyed this ride. Drive time is about 3.5 hours, but you could easily make a day of it by spending more time at the lake.
Hwy 5 is perfect, however the others should be traveled with a watchful eye. We did encounter some gravel on Hwy 135 and Hwy W. Hwy 5 is pretty straight with new pavement. You can feel confident rolling back on the throttle. Hwys W, MM, TT and 135 offer lots of quick hills (some steep) and fast, sweeping curves. Overall, I think the pavement is in good condition. We didn't encounter any pot hols, but there were some rough places, that were easily maneuvered around. Be careful on Hwy W, if you are busy sight-seeing, the road can get you. For me, hwy W was the more challenging of the roads on this route. This entire route presents lots of places to stop and look, take pictures and generally take in the beauty of the northern ozarks. You will find lots of fields, trees and plenty of wildlife. I am planning on traveling this one again in the fall, while the leaves are changing colors.
At the beginning of the route, Stover offers one gas station. Here you can get fuel or a pop. If you want to wait, Versailles has a few more options in fuel choices. There is also a Wal Mart in Versailles, and several places to get a bite to eat. Once you leave Versailles on Hwy W, you won't encounter a fuel stop until you reach the LOZ area. When you are at the lake, you will be presented with options on fuel and food. The folks at the Leather Man store, recommended Wise Guys for lunch. We ate there, the food was hot and the tea was cold. Prices were reasonable as well. There is a mexican restaurant there as well and well as other food shops. I would recommend fueling up the bike before pressing on. Once you get onto Hwy 135 you will have to make it to Stover before you see another fuel stop.
Nickname (optional) : Bagnell Dam Loop