Long bike tours, lots happen.. met another ex GF in Scotland , she from NZ.
Long bike tours, lots happen.. met another ex GF in Scotland , she from NZ.
On the pancake flat, boring ride to Davis from Sacramento, I saw a feral cat walking kind of funny. As I approached I saw that it had a squirrell kill in its mouth. It dropped the squirrell and started to run away, so I stopped and passed very slowly while giving the kitty a wide berth so it could retrieve its meal.
I had my helmet cam recording, so this was all caught on video.
I got stung by a bumblebee on my neck while riding my bike when I was a kid.
I got stung by a yellowjacket on my TONGUE as an adult (on a picnic, not on a bike). My tongue went numb, but didn't swell up. The girl I was chatting up kept telling me I was going to die.
If I had a nickel for every beesting, I could take every participant in this thread out for fish tacos. I think we're all allergic to beestings, just some of us moreso than others.
I've inhaled several bees, one stung me in the throat (inside) and I was worried the swelling would cut off my windpipe. I coughed up a bunch of legs, and fuzzy pieces (it was a big bumblebee), but continued breathing okay.
I've had some kind of large flying bug in Belgium trapped under my eyelid, struggling and fighting to get out. My Dutch riding buddy thought it was pretty hilarious that I started smacking myself in the face so hard with a closed fist all of the sudden.
I came around a corner once on a downhill and hit a crow on my brake lever. There was a whole murder of them (a flock of crows is called a murder) gathered around something dead in the road, and this one didn't get out of the way in time. I came back and he was a little stunned, because he hopped away from me for a while and eventually flew off.
And if we're allowed to count motorcycle interesting things, I've hit two deer, a pheasant, another crow (this one didn't make it), several small birds, a snake, and many thousands of bugs. Dozens of bee stings, and also a yellowjacket that flew into the sleeve of my leather jacket and left a spiraling path of stings that made it look like my arm got caught in an industrial sewing machine.
Once while camping on a motorcycle trip, I got trampled in my tent by a herd of deer. That was the last time I ever went camping that deep in the woods by myself.
Had the sheriff take me back to my car.
And i was hit by a pickup truck (mirror)
Riding last summer I got a bee caught behind my glasses. Couldn't get them off because of helmet straps. Tried to stop as fast as I could, got off the seat and got my feet on the ground before bike stopped and panicked and hit the front brake too hard and had the back of the bike go over my head knocking me over the handlebars onto the ground. My thighs were black and blue for weeks. Didn't get stung though.
My second worst experience with an insect occurred during a race in 1999.
The route descended into a ravine, climbed out of the ravine, turned left ... and then the cyclists pulled a U-turn and descended back into the ravine, climbed out of the ravine, pulled a U-turn ... etc. etc. for several loops.
I descended into the ravine and when I was climbing out, I noticed that there was a camera crew set up near the top of the hill filming the Cat 2 cyclists who were now about to descend the hill. I was laughing because they were all zipping up and trying to look all cool.
I got to the top of the hill, turned left, rode along a ways, then pulled the U-turn and started back toward the ravine.
All of a sudden a MASSIVE dragonfly flew into my mouth!!!!
I could feel it buzzing its wings, and I desperately tried to spit or gag it out .... but it was lodged in there!!
Just then I noticed that I was getting closer and closer to the camera crew. I didn't want the image of me gagging and spitting a dragonfly out of my mouth to be captured, but I didn't know what to do ... this thing would not back out of my mouth!
As I passed the camera crew, I closed my mouth and cycled by looking as calm, cool, and collected as a person can look with a massive dragonfly buzzing in her mouth.
As soon as I was by the camera, I reached into my mouth, and dragged this thing out ........ and then went through almost convulsive shudders at the thought of what had just happened!!
I DNF'd that race.
I also have this fear of dragonflies.
My worst experience wasn't nearly so amusing.
Late last autumn (mid-May), Rowan and I were on a dusk ride and there were lots of bugs flying around. One flew into my mouth and lodged itself well back in my throat. I coughed, hacked, and tried to spit it out but it wouldn't go. I ended up swallowing it, but almost immediately I was struggling to breathe. It felt like my throat closed up. I also had one of the worst sinus reactions I've had to anything.
I drank water and more water, struggling to get it down, and coughed, hacked, sputtered, and blew my nose, and wiped my eyes, and drank more water.
For the rest of the ride, my throat was burning and felt like I had a large grape stuck halfway down ... and I was fighting to breathe.
I continued to have throat issues for almost 2 months after, and during that time determined that I must have swallowed a rove beetle. Definitely NOT something you'd want to swallow.
Of course those are only two of many insect stories ... and two of many other cycling stories. I've been cycling regularly since 1990 ... a lot of things seen and done in that time.
got stopped in a park at night by police searching for a perp that fled ... k9 unit ...ar15's .. about 6 cop cars after looking at my id.. i was instructed to walk my bike to the outer edge of the park ... never heard what the guy did .. or if they ever found him
My experience is probably pretty tame considering some of the things I've read.
While riding along on a sidewalk in So Florida, I approached an overpass going over a canal.
Right at the edge sat an alligator measuring about 6 feet.
Well 6' may just be a Ho Hummer for the Swamp People but for me it was a show stopper as well as a bike stopper!
I looked at that gator and he looked at me. Finally he made his way down the bank and entered the water. He was laying on top of some plant slop just watching me.
I naturally had to get a better look and slowly approached. I was on the sidewalk looking down at him when finally the water just exploded as he made his exit. He was gone, never saw him again. Pretty cool.
I was riding at about 20 mph when a wasp flew into my helmet through a vent. I sat up and ripped off my helmet while riding no handed in the space of a second or two.
Another one was riding around Chatfield reservoir when my group and I encountered a very large bee swarm. We descended in a nice tuck as they were a few feet above our heads.
I was riding a local casual trail to test out a new fork and pair of tires when i ride up to see a bear, trotting across the trail about 40 feet infront of me. I quickly turned around and booked it
Just grab a helmet and ride. hmm... cant think of when that wouldnt work.
We have seen rattlesnakes a couple of times on rides, either near the road or, once, right across the trail (a hard-packed section thru a wash that would allow you to ride a rode bike on for most of it). Mule deer once on a road in the foothills north of Scottsdale.
I was descending at 40 mph down the side of a mountain and apparently buzzed a rattlesnake. I did not notice it but a friend following me did.
Met a guy who was jumping up and down smashing bottles in the bike lane. I told him to stop. He said "Why, Nobody cares!" I told him that I cared and made him back off.
So yes, there are trolls around purposely making broken glass to give you a flat tire.
Several years ago as I was riding home from a local seafood restaurant, I was taking a shortcut through an alley. As I'm approaching a cinder block wall there is a cop crouched down behind the wall. I've got my lights burning a dual-headlight with 10/12-watt quartz halogen bulbs, and a headlight with a 12-watt quartz halogen bulb mounted on my helmet.
Needless to say that I lit up not only the road, but I also lit up the cop. Who proceeded to indicate with his hands what I can only presume meant that he wanted me to either dim or turn off my lights.
How ironic is it that a cop would tell a cyclist to make themselves less not more visible?
Cyclists Against Carlos Bertonatti
1.0.0 Normal Grey Cockatiel (Hikaru)
0.0.1 2005 Specialized Hardrock MTB
0.0.2 Albino Cory Cats
0.0.? Ghost Shrimp
0.0.3 Neon Tetras
1.0.0 Red Betta
2.10.0 Swordtail (fry)
0.0.1 G. rosea (Kirk)
0.0.1 A. avicularia (Pinkie)
0.1.0 Orange Tabby Cat (Little One)
0.0.1 2009 Giant Seek 2
Live Long and Prosper
The fish are spread out between several tanks.
My technique for the bee/wasp thing is to resist panicking, stop the bike and let the bee reorient itself, crawl out of the helmet and fly away. Never a sting so far. You're asking for trouble if you start moving things around.
I see a lot of wildlife on the bike because I'm moving fairly quickly but silently, also a lot of people having sex. One time a bobcat became apoplectic when it noticed me watching it. First it crouched down and tried to disappear in the tall grass but when that didn't work it did sort of a little dance like it was torn between fleeing and attacking me. It was a feisty little guy and for an instant I was frightened it might charge. Finally it did run away but did so in a threatening and hesitating manner, if that makes sense.
Last edited by Clem von Jones; 02-10-12 at 10:44 PM.
Watching local young Mennonite guys cream full race kit triathletes on county roads. Man can some of those guys move on a bike. The thing that happened to me was taking a yellow jacket in the air vent of my helmet while descending on a hill at 60 km/h. Managed to take off the helmet and chuck it onto the grass and didn't get stung.
1997 Mongoose Hilltopper, 1988 Bianchi Specialissima, 2006 Surly Cross-Check, 2010 Norco City Glide, 1947 CCM Single-speed.
"Take him to the forge and show him the instruments"
Bernardo Gui, Inquisitor The Name of the Rose
After Sept 11th I was frisked when passing the National Guard Armory that sits next to a major trail. I decided to avoid that area for a bit.
Hit a dog from nowhere playing L.A. flying down a hill at 35+ on a DF. Without going into lurid details, surfice it to say the hospital bill was enough to buy a small house in a nice neighborhood. The dog survived.
I'll take bees any day.
The bicycle is one of the great inventions of mankind. Delights children, challenges young men to feats of daring, and turns old men into boys again.--Me