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Old 10-20-06, 03:10 PM   #1
NOS88
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keeping from being blown over...

How do you do it?

I went for a ride in the rain and wind this morning. Enjoyed the daylights out of the ride until the rain clouds started to clear up and strong gusts of wind moved in. At one point I came around a tight bend in the road and got hit with a gust of wind from my left side (glad it was that side, or I would have been pushed into traffic), and blew me off the edge of the road. As I'm starting to unclip and pick myself up off the ground I heard a large cracking sound and realized a tree about eight to ten feet from me was being blown over. Talk about getting your heart rate up! I was lucky in that the tree (A big elm about 2 ft. across) didn't get close to me when it went down. So, the rest of the ride home I'm feeling a little paranoid about the wind and wondering if there was anything I could have done to keep from being blown over. I felt like a rag doll being tossed around; not a feeling I'll ever deliberately seek out.
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Old 10-20-06, 03:59 PM   #2
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You could ride one of these instead:
norcotrike.jpg

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Old 10-20-06, 04:04 PM   #3
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Ride your trainer!
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Old 10-20-06, 04:09 PM   #4
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Old 10-20-06, 04:36 PM   #5
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If the wind is so strong as to be blowing over trees, then you should not have been riding. I would have taken refuge in a building or under an overpass to see if the wind died down. The cell phone is a good tool for battling high wind and rains. Reminds of a tour many years ago where after two days of rain, the real deluge started one night. My friend and I finally gave up and camped in a State Park restroom. Next day he called home and got his parents to come and get us. Good thing too, as all the roads were flooded and after driving 60 miles to find an open road, a couple of funnel clouds passed over the car.
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Old 10-20-06, 07:36 PM   #6
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Ride slow, ride a heavy bike, anticipate the gusts as fast as possible.

I agree, if the wind is blowing over trees stay inside if you know about it ahead of time.

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Originally Posted by fifty5
You could ride one of these instead:
Don't forget the extra ballast and eye protection.
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Old 10-20-06, 07:42 PM   #7
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Wow! We actually had a fellow cyclist in our local club killed on a club ride a couple years ago in a very similar situation. A summer storm came up quickly in the evening and blew a tree of a similar size over in the road on top of him. He was killed instantly. The group had turned to go back after seeing the storm come up but didn't make it back in time. His 20 year old daughter was also riding that evening but only got a mile or so into the ride and had to return because of a mechanical problem. Otherwise she probably would have been riding his wheel......Our fall ride is now named in his memory.

Glad you were not hurt.
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Old 10-20-06, 09:06 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by howsteepisit
If the wind is so strong as to be blowing over trees, then you should not have been riding. I would have taken refuge in a building or under an overpass to see if the wind died down. The cell phone is a good tool for battling high wind and rains. Reminds of a tour many years ago where after two days of rain, the real deluge started one night. My friend and I finally gave up and camped in a State Park restroom. Next day he called home and got his parents to come and get us. Good thing too, as all the roads were flooded and after driving 60 miles to find an open road, a couple of funnel clouds passed over the car.

Yeah, I didn't want to be out once the weather changed, and it changed very quickly. I was about six miles from home and thought it better to try and push on home before it got much worse.
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Old 10-21-06, 02:26 AM   #9
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I was out riding in that wind as well. I did not get blown off the road (probably because my route did not take me past any sort of buildings or underpasses that would temporarily shield me and then suddenly expose me to the wind's fury).

I offer no challenge or rebuke to those who recommend that you should not ride in such weather, but, I don't subscribe to their level of caution. The story about the rider who died from a falling tree is tragic, but, the outcome might well have been the same if he had been driving in his car - and, as it relates to cycling, that's the measure of caution I apply. If I would venture out in my car, then, I do not hesitate to venture out on my bike.

There isn't much you can do to avoid tumbling if you were surprised by a sudden gust of wind - but, then, again, the outcome wasn't very severe, either.

None of can control when a tree is about to fall. We pretty much have to accept that when it happens, either our time is up, or our time hasn't yet come.

The barrage of admonitions from newscasters that generally accompanies the slightest of weather disturbances in our area appalls me. We are constantly advised: "if it isn't absolutely necessary for you to venture out, then, please, just stay at home."

This and similar admonitions from reporters who (along with their camera crews) are reporting "live" from the scene.

For me, it's all hyperbole. I ride my bike in all sorts of weather. Some of my most serene rides have come after a 6 - 12" snowfall. While the rest of the world is hunkered down watching on TV how dreadful the conditions are, I'm out riding through quiet powder admiring God's handiwork.

The only time I found myself out in weather when I wished I were inside was during a violent lighting/thunder storm. The lightening was close enough that you couldn't see the bolts - the area around me just sort of lit up as though someone had turned on some stage lights. I knew those bolts had to be really close. I decided in that situation that the best course was just to push on, so, push on I did.

Other than hunkering down in a forest, there was no other place to go.

I love to fish (as well as cycle), and, as a kid, found myself out on the river more than once when an electrical storm blew up. I caught more than one huge northern pike during that sort of storm. It was probably quite dangerous - but I survived it . . . and so I figure that your time is your time.

OTOH, I've read stories of folks trying to wrap up some outdoor gathering as a storm approached only to be struck by a lighting bolt before they could get out of the way.

I apologize for rambling, but, my bottom line is that you probably did all you could and should follow the same procedures in a similar situation if it confronts you in the future.

Happy riding.

Caruso
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Old 10-21-06, 02:35 AM   #10
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Did a ride earlier in the year and it was accompanied by high winds. Great number of branches down in the wooded area but they were down by the time we got to them. Luckily, for the first part of the ride, the winds were only up to about 35mph and not causing too much of a problem. The wind, when it got up to a 50 mph headwind was one of the factors in us deciding to stop riding. The other was that a bit further on- riders were being blown off their bikes.
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Old 10-21-06, 06:56 AM   #11
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One of the worst things about Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego in particular is the wind, incessant, the noise is in your head all day. and very few places to hunker down and shelter. I managed to find a sheperds hut for lunch stop. But the lack of water and food means having to carry on.

On one day I was blown off 4 times by gusts that were off the scale, But being very far from habitation I just had to try to keep going. Several blogs I have read all say the same thing about pushing the bike for miles.

The good thing is, there are no trees, they just cannot grow there.

North of Rio Grande is the Monument to the Wind, a fitting place for it.


In Europe I was trying to outrun a violent thunderstorm down into Gap, in France. Lightning was filling the sky all around the mountain tops, torrential rain. I was far in excess of the safe speed for towing a BOB trailer as I went down the descent into Gap.

As I hit the outskirts there was a sports ground with floodlight towers, a tremendous lightning strike hit one of the towers about 10 to 15 ft away from me but the electricity must have come throught the wet ground and my bike to shock me and I fell off.

I came round in a vet's sharing a room with a dog who had one of those lampshade protectors over its head to stop it biting its wounds.

Very surreal. But an nice cup of tea and biscuits ( not doggy ones), a rest and I was OK.
some folks in a car had helped me into the vets but I knew nothing about it.

Sometimes you just have to be out there cycling and weather happens

george
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Old 10-21-06, 11:05 AM   #12
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Ride in the direction the wind is blowing. It's know as a tailwind. Yeehaw!
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Old 10-21-06, 04:16 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carusoswi

The barrage of admonitions from newscasters that generally accompanies the slightest of weather disturbances in our area appalls me. We are constantly advised: "if it isn't absolutely necessary for you to venture out, then, please, just stay at home."

This and similar admonitions from reporters who (along with their camera crews) are reporting "live" from the scene.

For me, it's all hyperbole. I ride my bike in all sorts of weather.
I wonder if the weather forecasters are afraid of a lawsuit? Or are they talking to the
weakest link? I remember one time a storm came up an hour before we got off work. My
boss was worried about me. He let me go home an hour early. Hey, I wasn’t going to
argue.

Riding in a rain storm was the best commute I have had. Is there more danger. Yes. But I
trust my judgment to know what I can handle.
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Old 10-22-06, 12:44 AM   #14
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Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee haaaaaaaa!
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