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Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 8:53am
by DrkAngel
I hope no one objects, but I would like to comment on the dangers of "trail" riding. The "trail" I ride is 10' wide blacktop and follows a river, winding through about 5 miles of forest, across two nice wooden bridges, circles a college campus then returns, on the outskirts of town. (My typical 10 mile, ebike, "jaunt".)

I see deer, in the occasional fields, most every morning. They aren't really a danger, they stay on one side of the trail because the river is fairly tight to the other side, with steep banks, and there are plenty of small streams for drinking water.

Rabbits seem fairly scarce, might see one, maybe two, a day. They take one hop and are in the brush. No problem!

Squirrels! Dozens of them, sometimes 50, or more, on the trail, lots of oak trees. They play it close, always running at the last second, but, almost always, directly toward the nearest tree. Maybe, ... I ran over the toes of one squirrel, once, it was close, but he was still running. The one exception happened with a large gray squirrel, he ran straight up the trail directly ahead of me, for about 50 feet, I was able to clock him at 14.8mph!

The most annoying critters would have to be gnats, and other swarming bugs. Especially in the occasionally sunlight forest region, almost invisible clouds of microscopic pests pummel your eyes and mouth. I wear gradient sunglasses, full wrap around, and take great care not to exert myself to the point of becoming a "mouth breather". I also wear a baseball cap, with large brim, and go "heads down" into the fray!

Which bring me to the most horrific, tragic, suicidal creatures imaginable. I call them "The Kamikaze"! ..... This creature will watch you approach, step to the left, hop to the right then desperately throw himself under your tires. Do not try to avoid him, he can hop, skitter and zig-zag faster than you can imagine. There's no possible way to out maneuver him. I've seen 5 re-directions in 2 seconds. Just to confuse, he will run in circles in front of you, getting warmed up for his death plunge. You don't have a chance, there is no defense! Not much larger than a mouse, this fierce-some creature has certainly earned his racing stripes. Beware! the chipmunk.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 11:32am
by geetarboy
At least on trails you don't have "The Worst Beast of All" to contend with... They are usually quite predictable and harmless,however they do excrete a rather foul cloudy odor. There coloring varies widely,they habitate in all climates and conditions, and some are actually very beautiful. When angered or distracted though, they can become your worst nightmare :shock: - you all know the one I'm talkin about :mrgreen:

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 11:39am
by neptronix
I am on the hunt for a good looking bandanna myself due to the bug intake factor. Have already invested in some glasses.
The faster you go, the worse it is.

We don't have chipmunks where i live. But i bet you are glad you ride a lead sled. The heavier the bike, the better when dealing with those suicidal creatures, i am sure.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 11:51am
by dogman dan
I thought you were talking about those suicidal pairs of dumb women walking up the center of the path for sure there, for a moment. All of them have less situational awareness than any squirrel. Approach em, and one jumps each way. Either side you choose is wrong, and so is up the middle as they bump into eachother half the time. Walk to the right ladies.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 12:04pm
by neptronix
Guys do it too.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 12:32pm
by dogman dan
Here, the guys tend to walk or jog solo. It's the ladies that are in packs walking the path 4 abreast, and resenting the hell out of anybody wanting to bike on the bike path. We have desert squirrels, but man, they are so fast it's no problem with them getting in the way. Out in the open desert, it's great fun to try to keep up with a jackrabbit. Only humans around here are dumb and slow enough to be a problem.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 1:09pm
by DrkAngel
dogman wrote:I thought you were talking about those suicidal pairs of dumb women walking up the center of the path for sure there, for a moment. All of them have less situational awareness than any squirrel. Approach em, and one jumps each way. Either side you choose is wrong, and so is up the middle as they bump into eachother half the time. Walk to the right ladies.
Singular females are almost as bad.

eg. A single woman was walking up the center of an 8' path.
I toot my horn ... no reaction ... closer . I toot again ... still no reaction.
She seemed slightly left of center, so I aimed right, to pass.
Suddenly, she took 1 step to the right, then turned her head to look, ... saw me coming, so took a partial step back towards center, before jumping to the right again! ...

Almost like she was trying to be hit.

Fortunetely, I keep my brakes and reflexes well tuned, and was able to stop, from about 20mph, in about 20ft.
But my front wheel was almost between her legs!

Might almost be safer, for everyone, if I just drop into stealth mode and glide by!

Or, use my, "stubborn obstacle", air horn!

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 1:19pm
by beast775
dogman has it exact :lol: !,i ride a heavily populated bike walk run long ass trail,i see this almost everday.thats why i installed an air horn.we have cougars and bears to deal with here. so a humans easy to deal with,a black bear mauled a guy dead ,not far from where i ride.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 1:38pm
by Pure
Or use my, "stubborn obstacle", air horn!
That's the only horn I use. Scares the sh*t out of people. :twisted:

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 4:02pm
by MadRhino
The most dangerous creatures, the forest is full of them. They are not fools that jump in front of you, they patiently wait for your mistake and.... Slam! :shock:
Hitting a tree, is the nightmare of any mountain rider.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 4:44pm
by Red_Liner740
coming across ppl from behind i initate the pass, and usually without letting them know about it. Because at that point there are less variables. Letting them know you are passing brings in their variable. they get panicked and do something stupid.

I learned that on my motorcycle...when i pass, i do it aggressively and fast. Less time for crap to go wrong

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 7:08pm
by dogman dan
Exactly how I do it too, if they have learned to walk right. Gone before they can jump stupidly. But the center line walker could jump either way, and two will jump both ways.. No way to tell if they will leave the center empty or trip over each other there. By then I'm down to 5 mph, to let em know how much more pleasant their walk would be if they stay right. Most will walk right from then on, a few tell me to f---- off.

Trees though, they deserve respect. Long before Sonny Bono, I skied the forest at 5-10 mph. I considered a 3' wide space a huge opening so hauling ass was not even possible. I learned fast that smacking a tree at 25 mph or more really was not fun. Cruicial to do it feet first.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 9:41pm
by mat h physics

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 9:59pm
by Pure
But sadly, the bear didn’t have insurance so I can’t do anything about it.”
He should sue The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 10:09pm
by DAND214
I still don't understand why ppl/women have to walk on the BIKE PATH.

Why do they call it a bike path? Is it for bikes or ?

I ride daily around a small lake near my house. the women with their baby strollers and kids are the worst. You never know when they will stop in the middle of the path bent over to take care of the baby or the kid with them. The kids with them that are not being watched while they are talkiny to each other or on the phone.

The good one is the a fmily with the small kids that are riding along from side to side of the path while you approach them and the parent calls them and they turn sideways in the path.

Thursday they had some kids dael at the lake, boy was that a bad place to go. I almost got 4 kids in the 2 mile ride around the lake, I got out of there before they got me.
Watch out for the humans out there they are the worst!.
Dan

Darn Cats!

Posted: Jul 16 2011 10:26pm
by DrkAngel
I must have blocked it out ... ran through a "minefield" of caterpillars hanging from their threads. They seemed to have claws, peeling them off ... like ... Velcro, sometimes their fat bodies not remaining intact. And no mirror, or "buddy", to confirm 100% success of removal ...

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Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 17 2011 6:09am
by dogman dan
That's hilarious. :D Occasionally we'll get plagues of grasshoppers. Disgusting for the motorcycle riders.

Once I hit a thick swarm of bees at about 60 mph. At that speed they really stung. Not stinging me, but just painful to hit that many in a t shirt. And 4-5 of em inside the helmet, trapped by the windshield was pretty distracting.

Further east in my state, after a rain you may have hundreds of tarantulas crawling on the roads. That's pretty cool.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 17 2011 1:42pm
by Solcar
Here, they built a new county park that the benefactors disallowed bicycles to go on. :x I walked on it once and partly due to my condition, I found walking it to be too tedious and tiring. I find it hard to believe that people can tolerate walking much to anywhere.

I will have to remember about chipmunks. I realize that going downhill on the dark bike trail at 25 mph the other day was a bad idea on account of potentially leaping dear, though, I reckon that the danger is much worse at dawn as opposed to dusk. However, there was a walker who did give me a bit of a concern.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 17 2011 2:11pm
by Zen_Shenron
DrkAngel wrote:Beware! the chipmunk.
I can definitely relate there, as my local trail has tons of those little buggers. Squirrels as well.
The thing that bugs me is that all along the path, clearly posted on signs that say WALK ON LEFT FACING CYCLISTS!!!

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 17 2011 2:21pm
by DrkAngel
dogman wrote:That's hilarious. :D

Further east in my state, after a rain you may have hundreds of tarantulas crawling on the roads. That's pretty cool.
Not quite "hazardous", more annoying-disgusting, are the moist ground pests.

There is not much worse than the "creature bits" that get thrown up by your tires. Snails, slugs, worms etc. make a nasty mess of your bike and, if you neglected to add fenders ... you!

Maybe the most dangerous creature comes out after a heavy rain. The streams & rivers get muddy and the Frogs head for cleaner water, or maybe just want to explore the freshly wetly world. Anyhow, a slimy frog is worse, on a curve than a pile of wet leaves, not to mention the ick factor.

Keep your eyes open! .... Goggles recommended!

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Jul 17 2011 9:51pm
by heathyoung
Bunnies - thank god for front suspension and dual wall rims (and motorcycle rain suits!), they may look small and cute but when you hit them broadside at 50kph - bang, scrunch (and once pop - urk.)

They are a feral pest around here, so I don't feel too bad about it. Wouldn't tell the kids though :oops:

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Mar 27 2012 10:05pm
by mat h physics
So lately here in NC these have been hanging from trees over the bike paths: http://www.wral.com/weather/video/10913 ... id10913922

Had to pull 50 or so off in the past week. canker worms.

Of course this footage from Africa trumps anything we may see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S2oymHHyV1M
:shock:

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: May 04 2012 10:14pm
by DrkAngel
Maybe it was the lack of Winter?
Not sure why, but "my" trail was infested with clouds of ... gnats?
It was 85F but mostly cloudy, so they didn't "show" in the sunlight.

They were so dense that they sucked up into my nose, I mouthed an inhale to blow them out ...
It felt like someone threw a handfull of sand in my mouth.
Gritty bitter bugs!
Even my wraparound sunglasses didn't keep them out of my eyes.

Got done riding, coughed up a few then brushed a pile of them from my arm hair.

Going riding tomorrow ...
Seriously considering my Winter goggles and medical mask!

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: May 04 2012 10:27pm
by remf
Snake tangled in your bike fanging your manhood. There's really only one I really dread...the Brown Snake - world's 2nd deadliest and very common where I ride. I've come within inches of Whip Snakes on 2 occasions both times swerving to miss only for both to swing back towards my wheels.

Re: Creature Hazards!

Posted: Oct 18 2012 9:16am
by DrkAngel
Lately "my" trail seems to have become infested with a class of "sub-humanoids" that I would label "Stoners & Texters".

Possibly humans, merely suffering from a ST malady?
These STs wander mindlessly, eyes downward, slack jawed, mouth breathing.

Oblivious to my brilliant strobe and loud horn they wait till I am within feet, then lunge in a random direction.
Much like blind deaf zombies, they seem to enliven and "attack" when fresh meat is close enough to smell.

Is this a local infestation?
Has it spread to other areas?
Are these really zombies?

Thinking about "Mad Maxing" my bike.

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