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Old 08-05-09, 11:17 AM   #1
molarface
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Thought I'd found all the hazards out there.....

Went out for an evening ride last night w/ my 20 yo son. Did our favorite ride which happens to run along a lazy river for most of the way. Well kids have good legs, it was a gorgeous afternoon, light traffic, and he didn't want to turn around until the sun went down at the 20 mile mark. The return was absolute misery. It seems that as the sun set every flying insect for miles around came out of the riverside vegetation. Our first plan was to use our headlights, allowing us to maintain a 15mph clip, but the lights attracted even more insects and 15 seems to be when you really start to feel the big ones hit( I swear that the cicadas were intentionally diving at us). Meanwhile the little gnat-like buggers are in our eyes, nose, mouth (we learned not to talk)buzzing in our ears. Off went the lights, our speed dropped (less bugs but they still were pretty thick) but w/o even street lights to help out it was dicey going. Dogs and a couple raccoons all seem to enjoy our route also.
After a shower and a late dinner my son says, "ya'know, with swim goggles and a surgical mask that would be fun! how 'bout Friday night?"
I told him we'd do a 'desert night ride' instead.

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Old 08-05-09, 11:20 AM   #2
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sounds like you had fun... Road hazards are not all below the tires it would seeem.
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Old 08-05-09, 11:22 AM   #3
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Did you have any eye protection? How about bites, did they just slam into you or bite you too?
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Old 08-05-09, 11:27 AM   #4
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Did you have any eye protection? How about bites, did they just slam into you or bite you too?
Glasses for me, none for my son. They didn't help as they came around the edges. No mosquitos or other biters, just kamakazi tactics.

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Old 08-05-09, 11:28 AM   #5
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funny about the lights and bugs. I have noticed on my early 5:30 am morning commutes the bugs seem to travel/congregate about head high. I've learned to shut my mouth on specific parts of the route near streams.
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Old 08-05-09, 11:38 AM   #6
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Riding alongside a river at night may involve hitting Dobsonflies which are larger than Dragonflies. At 15 to 20 mph they would provide a wallop when hitting a rider.

Over the years I've encountered some kind of bug hatch when riding past soy bean fields on summer evenings. I'll be riding along when suddenly the bug swarm will start hitting my helmet, bike, glasses and any exposed skin. The bugs are not large but do have enough weight to make a plunking sound when hitting anything hard and do sting when hitting my face. Wraparound photochromic glasses are good for protecting the eyes and when day goes into night.
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Old 08-05-09, 11:47 AM   #7
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Part of my "Homeward bound" commute is on an MUP through about 3 miles of woods. I work rotating shifts so I get early morning and evening trips through the woods. I've consumed many un-intentional little snacks over the years.
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Old 08-05-09, 11:50 AM   #8
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I've been plagued by "no see-ums" on two hills I ride frequently. Each is close to green space with ponds or other sources of water they can breed in. I don't notice them on the descent, but they are really annoying as I chug uphill. I'm pretty good about putting on sunscreen before I ride. Does anyone use a brand that is also an insect repellent? I hesitate to use two products, as I don't know which ones work well together. A bargain brand would be OK for me.

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Old 08-05-09, 01:26 PM   #9
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My safety glasses and dust mask have gotten more use on the Schuylkill River Trail then they ever got during home remodeling.
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Old 08-05-09, 01:40 PM   #10
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You're looking at this wrong. Open your mouth and eat up! Lots of protein in those little guys!
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Old 08-05-09, 02:54 PM   #11
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You're looking at this wrong. Open your mouth and eat up! Lots of protein in those little guys!
My thought exactly but those critters get stuck at the back of the throat and get me gagging.

I never ride without my cycling glasses and they are wrap round and rarely get anything behind them. And I have learnt to recognise where the clouds of Gnats will be so close the mouth before hand. Or ask my riding partener a question that will have him talking as we ride into them
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Old 08-05-09, 03:02 PM   #12
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I started using Scott Goggles for riding along the river. But that still leaves the smaller bugs going up your nose when your mouth is shut.
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Old 08-05-09, 06:40 PM   #13
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If I ever ride the Joe Pool dam road near or after dark, the gnats are awful, and believe me, you take a lot more bug hits on the face on a recumbent than on an upright bike. The fairing on my Stratus XP directs them all just over my head, though.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:56 AM   #14
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So you got a big, free, high protein dinner (LOL)
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Old 08-06-09, 12:48 PM   #15
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I've been plagued by "no see-ums" on two hills I ride frequently. Each is close to green space with ponds or other sources of water they can breed in. I don't notice them on the descent, but they are really annoying as I chug uphill. I'm pretty good about putting on sunscreen before I ride. Does anyone use a brand that is also an insect repellent? I hesitate to use two products, as I don't know which ones work well together. A bargain brand would be OK for me.

Kevin
Copper Tone Bug 'N' Sun available at your local Wal type Mart.
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