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What was your "this was a bad idea" ride?

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What was your "this was a bad idea" ride?

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Old 03-13-18, 09:13 AM
  #26  
rando_couche
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Riding home from work on the first "barely raining but all day long" day after a long dry spell. Got halfway home, front wheel washed out on me. Took me a year + to recover fully from the concussion.
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Old 03-13-18, 09:42 AM
  #27  
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I've had some memorable rides. I used to read Flying magazine. There's a "I learned about flying from that" column. So I've had rides like that, but I wouldn't ever call education a "bad idea." "Memorable" is a better term. Never had a ride I wished I hadn't done. One never knows if perhaps one owes one's life to a memorable ride.

Edit: I've had many adventures, no disasters. The difference between those two experiences is that one returns from an adventure.
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Old 03-13-18, 10:02 AM
  #28  
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Early September 2016 I went out riding on local trails a misty day after a friend bailed on me to go riding on a crushed limestone path that was much further from home. All was fine until I came upon a section of paved bike trail that had been recently sealcoated. There was a short decline with a right turn. My rear wheel slid out from under me with no warning and I slammed the entire right side of my body into the asphalt. I still have the oil marks on the jacket that I was wearing. I never tried to remove them as they serve as a reminder that fresh sealcoat + rain = the summer equivalent of black ice.

I was about 12 miles from my car and too proud to call my husband so I got back on the bike and rode home even though my right hip flexor was pulled, my knee was scraped up, and my right shoulder/wrist hurt a lot. My head was fine thanks to my helmet.

I got back to the car, loaded up my bike, and headed home. My husband had to help bring stuff in from my car as trying to go up the few steps from the garage were agony with the pulled hip flexor. The hip flexor took about a month to fully heal. I couldn't sleep on my right side for months. And then I had lingering issues with my lower back seizing up on the right side for nearly a year afterward.

I really wished I had just stayed in that day.
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Old 03-13-18, 02:57 PM
  #29  
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When I was 19 or 20 years old my girlfriend and I bought some fairly swanky road bikes. This would have been around 1980; I remember I got a Raleigh, she got a Fuji, but no idea what models or what kinds of components they had. Okay, probably not "swanky" by today's standards, but they were certainly swankier than anything I'd ever owned or seen at the time.

This was also the first time I'd been on a bike in probably three years.

And in all the years prior -- I started riding a bike when I was 8 years old and cycled pretty regularly up until I was 17 years old...but probably never for more than an hour at a time, maybe two hours -- I'm sure I'd never ridden more than 15 miles in one day in my life.

So Ms. Thing gets it into her head that we're going to cycle from Boston to Plymouth, a route of about 40 miles. And we're going to be camping once we get to Plymouth, so we're going to have all our gear in backpacks and/or strapped to our new bikes. Bikes that we've only just bought, that prior to buying we hadn't cycled at all in the previous three years, and that never before had I ridden a distance of even one-quarter this route. And never laden with gear.

Beginning to get the picture? Yeah, that was a bad idea.

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Old 03-13-18, 08:58 PM
  #30  
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Mine was about a year and a half ago. A few friends wanted to take a ride from San Bernardino to Huntington Beach taking the SART. Round trip was set to be 127 miles. The ride is pretty flat with just a few small bumps coming home. The rider down to the beaach was smooth and fast and we grabbed a quick bite before heading home. We went south back to the SART before heading east towards San Bernardino. I should have realized we might be in trouble when I felt a pretty good tail wind heading south. When we made the turn east towards Santa Ana and Anaheim the Santa Anna winds hit us right in the face. It was reasonable at first with winds about 7 to 10 knots. By the 80 mile mark we were bucking 15 knot winds right in the face and trying to take turns pulling just to go 10 to 12 mph. We had lost half of our rides when we took a break in Yorba Linda and were down to 4 riders as we entered Norco. There were time when we would come up to a small hill and get up to 15 MPH only to crest the rise and drop to 6MPH as if riding into sand.

By the time we got back to Riverside as was close to through. I couldn't keep 12 mph to same my life and I needed electrolytes by the bottle full to stop the leg cramps. I wanted to quit and at one point thought of telling the rest of the riders to go on without me and I would just rest till I could make it myself. No one was leaving me and we got back to San Bernardino after dark.

Later I learned the wind had been gusting to 45 MPH with a steady blow in the 25 range. The truth of the statement of, "Climbing is easier because you know where the top is," but "the wind never gives you a clue." It took all weekend for me to recover.

What I learned was, check the weather closely before committing to a all day ride.
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Old 03-13-18, 09:07 PM
  #31  
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Several years ago, I took off on a Sunday morning ride on the gravel roads that fan out from our house in rural Iowa. After a few miles I realized that I hadn't taken this dead end road ever, and decided today was as good as any to go exploring with my go anywhere Schwinn Woodlands. Around the posts at the top of the hill and into waist high weeds and grasses I headed. Cresting the incline and following a narrow deer path through the vegetation, I found myself overlooking the river about a half mile away. I could see a gravel road on the far side , but a bridge that crossed the river on this long ago abandoned road was masked by a clump of trees. Off I went. within fifty feet the deer path took a sharp right hand turn and left me heading through the weeds and down an ever increasing slope. The chain gathered up a large bundle of grasses and removed itself from the drive. The mosquitoes found me about the same time I got the chain reinstalled. Down the hill I headed and again the chain became entangled. The mosquitoes called their friends. The third time the chain left the scene I decided it would be faster to walk the bike down to the bridge and get across and onto a gravel trail that would lead me to fewer winged vampires. Pushing that bike down that last fifty yards to the river was nothing compared to the trip back up the hill again. The bridge was gone and I had no idea how deep the stream was looking over the four foot high cut bank. By far the longest mile I have ever taken on any bike I have ever owned!
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Old 03-14-18, 09:51 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by woodway View Post
My wife insisted that I was not ready, but of course I would not listen. Halfway to work I realized she was right and the ride was really a bad idea. She had to come get me. Not good. Can I ever learn?

And that's one more reason why women live longer than men

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Old 03-14-18, 03:49 PM
  #33  
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In September 2012 I headed out for a long ride on San Gabriel River Trail which is near my house and provides a 60 mile route if I go to the Santa Fe Dam and to the beach (round trip). Due to prevailing winds that are typical on the trail I go north first toward the dam from my home which is near the trail about 9 miles from beach. It was a hot day. I loaded up my camelback with ice and water and put ice water and Hammer Heed in my bottles. It got extremely hot on the trail. My Garmin was reading about 105F. I started back south and started to feel really bad. I stopped and took off my GoPro from my helmet because the added weight made me feel worse. Oddly of all my rides this is first time I recall being stopped and passing cyclists not asking me if I needed help. *shrug*. Eventually I called my husband to come get me about 12 miles from home. I knew there was an AM/PM off the trail not too far and near the 605FWY where he could get me. I downed two gatorades and a banana while waiting for him.

Second time I called for SAG was last summer. I was dealing with terrible hip pain but tried to ride anyway. I rode to my friends shop about 24 miles from the house and by time I got there I was in serious pain with each pedal stroke on the bad hip side. I gave it a go riding home but it just got worse and worse. I reached Sunset Beach which is maybe 12 or so miles from home by that point and stopped at Starbucks. I planned on getting something to drink and texting the hubby to come get me. He beat me to it. He was watching my progress on Life360 and saw I was not moving for a bit. He asked if I wanted him to come get me. I did.

Those are the only two times I have ridden and had to call for a ride.
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Old 03-14-18, 06:14 PM
  #34  
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Mine was when I was 15. A friend suggested we ride down to the beach. I borrowed another friend's 10-speed Raleigh, and we went at it.

It was Mother's day, and boy was it fun. To be 15 and glide along with little traffic. Sure, we had to ride up a short grade to climb to the top of Topanga Canyon (maybe a 300 foot climb), but was that descent down to the beach fun! And with virtually ZERO traffic.

Even better, once we got there, it was sunny and warm, so we rode all the way down to Manhattan Beach for a little sunbathing.

But oy, when it came time to ride back. We didn't dare ride back uphill on Topanga (I would certainly do it now), and we guessed that a different route ... up Sepulveda ... would be safer. That put us through a lot of city traffic, and we still had to go uphill and through a tunnel to boot.

We were flippin exhausted. The total distance was something in the order of 70-80 miles, and had never ridden even close to that far before.

We finally got home ... completely exhausted ... our parents wondering where the hell we were all day.

It's a ride I would do in pretty quick order nowadays for fun, and wouldn't have enough climbing to satisfy me. But at the time? Oy, did I get my arse kicked.
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Old 03-15-18, 12:57 AM
  #35  
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Last December 3rd, the weather sites and the local TV station said it was going to be a beautiful 45° day. So I headed out for one of my long rides. About an hour out I passed through a very small country town where there was a time/temperature sign saying it was 22°. I was very surprised but I felt great so I kept riding. It was a beautiful day, clear blue sky no traffic. Another 45 minutes later I noticed I was approaching a dark frozen fog bank. I rode right into it and did notice a drop in the temperature, but I kept going. Soon my fingers started to get very cold, but I was near the 1/2 way mark. Then I realized my fingers were so cold I was having trouble shifting and breaking couldn't even get a grip on the handlebars. I tried warming my hands in my arm pits, but that didn't help at all. So I kept riding, heading for home. I felt warm everywhere, except I couldn't feel my feet at all and my fingers were frozen. Eventually I got back to the small town which wasn't much more than a gas station deli, still 22°. I went in and held my hands against the hot dog cooker, very hot. Bought a blueberry muffin and they filled my frozen water bottles with hot water, I stuck one under my jersey and coat and felt mostly warmed up, I headed for home. There were two steep long hills that helped keep me warm, and the hot water bottle under my coat was a life saver. I don't trust the weather reports any more, I over dress and take off layers as needed. Plus I bought two Zipo hand warmers and a bunch of the disposable kind. I don't think I'll ever go out again without at least a few disposable hand warmers ever again. Maybe if it's well over 80° this coming summer. 57 miserable miles, but it was a beautiful day and I survived, so a good ride.
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Old 03-15-18, 03:56 AM
  #36  
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Probably the winter commute where the heated insoles had cut out on the way in, and being Friday, I didn’t want to leave the bike in the rack over the weekend and rode home.
Cost me a day in considerable pain and then weeks of discomfort as the nail finally detached.
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Old 03-15-18, 12:55 PM
  #37  
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I've never had a ride I wished I hadn't done. But I had a ride years ago that I wished I hadn't bailed on. It was a 200K brevet in eastern Iowa, the day started out sunny and a light breeze but the wind kept getting stronger, and stronger. at the turn around point it was really howling, but for the next 20 miles it was sort of blocked by trees on either side of the rode.

Then I hit open country and the wind was coming from the side, it had to be in excess of 45pmh and the gusts almost knocked me over. By the time I reached the next control, I was walking the bike and feeling shattered.

Anyway, when I got to the control stop, there were a couple of other riders there. they had called the organizer for a ride to the finish. and in a daze I said I'd bail too. The thing is it was 40-ish miles left and maybe 5+ hours left.

The wind would (and did) die down in a couple of hours. I could've and should've rested a bit, and kept going. That DNF haunts me and always will.
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Old 03-15-18, 07:45 PM
  #38  
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Winter commute of 15 miles. Only had road shoes available. 20 degrees and windchill of 20 below. 6" of snow fall. Feet got frostbite and hurt real bad. Had to have someone drive me home that night. Suffered for 10 hours at work that day.
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Old 03-18-18, 03:13 PM
  #39  
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I was on the same Great River Ride as the OP (2016) usually a very enjoyable and well organized ride. I signed up for the century (as he said, it is over 110 miles). Forecast scattered showers in the AM, then clear and warming. Also as he said, never cleared and never warmed. At the baked potato stop (about 60 odd miles in) I couldn't stop shivering, so I cut off one 20+ mile loop and headed back to start, ended up doing about 85 miles. Cold, wet and miserable most of the way. Last year when early showers were forecast for the ride, I stayed home!
I can do cold, and I can do wet, but cold and wet=not fun.
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Old 03-19-18, 05:42 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by MikeWMass View Post
I was on the same Great River Ride as the OP (2016) usually a very enjoyable and well organized ride. I signed up for the century (as he said, it is over 110 miles). Forecast scattered showers in the AM, then clear and warming. Also as he said, never cleared and never warmed. At the baked potato stop (about 60 odd miles in) I couldn't stop shivering, so I cut off one 20+ mile loop and headed back to start, ended up doing about 85 miles. Cold, wet and miserable most of the way. Last year when early showers were forecast for the ride, I stayed home!
I can do cold, and I can do wet, but cold and wet=not fun.
We may have been shivering next to each other at the potato stop! Good for you for making it 85 miles that day!!
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Old 03-19-18, 06:33 AM
  #41  
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I signed up for a multi-day tour here in Michigan during a record-setting summer for heat. It was 90+ the first couple of days and I can only guess how hot it was out on the asphalt roads with the heat rising up at the same time the sun was beating down. I remember looking down and seeing my bars dripping with the sweat falling off me. When I got to our night's camping spot at a rural high school it turned out that the school's boilers were shut down for the summer, so the showers were basically putting out ice water (and no, it was not refreshing!). When I got back to my tent, just sticking my head inside made me start sweating again, and it was only supposed to drop into the high 80s that night. So I called my wife and asked how quickly she could get there to rescue me, which was not a problem since she had been worried about the conditions from the start!

That was also the end of my bike-and-camp days and now I only do multi-day tours where we stay in hotels or B&Bs!
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Old 03-19-18, 07:04 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Wildwood View Post
A bad day on the bike (assuming rubber side down) is better than a good day at work.


If I remember work correctly.
You are so right. I prefer a “bad” day on the bike over a good day at wor—anytime, every time..

In fact, there is really no good day at work.
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Old 03-19-18, 08:52 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
You are so right. I prefer a “bad” day on the bike over a good day at wor—anytime, every time..

In fact, there is really no good day at work.
Well, on this, we can all agree!!
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Old 03-20-18, 09:40 PM
  #44  
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The ride itself was enjoyable but the conditions made it more than a "bad idea". A few years ago I did the 5 Boros ride in New York City. The day started out cold and at least 2" of rain fell during the ride. The crowd thinned and my friends and I sped up. Only after the ride did we realize that the shallow puddles we rode through could have been killer pot holes.
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Old 03-23-18, 04:16 AM
  #45  
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I don't know if it could be called a "ride" but when I was at UW-Madison in the 70s I thought it would be a good idea to ride on frozen Lake Mendota. This was on an el-cheapo c.Itoh road bike that was my transport at school. I don't think I could get more than 20-30 feet without going down. I kept at it for a while but beat the crap out of my knees from hitting the ice. Finally called it a day. Not a cycling story, but I did once go out with my roomie and we skated across the lake. I'm not sure how far it is across, but it was one long skate. I couldn't walk for a couple days after that. The only saving grace was there was a bar on the far side.

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Old 03-24-18, 04:39 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by scott967 View Post
I don't know if it could be called a "ride" but when I was at UW-Madison in the 70s I thought it would be a good idea to ride on frozen Lake Mendota. This was on an el-cheapo c.Itoh road bike that was my transport at school. I don't think I could get more than 20-30 feet without going down. I kept at it for a while but beat the crap out of my knees from hitting the ice. Finally called it a day. Not a cycling story, but I did once go out with my roomie and we skated across the lake. I'm not sure how far it is across, but it was one long skate. I couldn't walk for a couple days after that. The only saving grace was there was a bar on the far side.

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My old man went to UW-back in the '50s... Some of the pranks he told me about...

  • Taking one guy's entire room and setting it on a raft in the middle of the lake. Guy came home, to an empty room. 'Friends' pointed out to the lake. He swam out and spent the night on the raft.
  • Another guy had an old Ford model T or A... Something simple and basic. His building mates took it totally apart and reassembled it in his room...
Gotta watch those Engineers.... BTW, the Old Man was Tau Beta Pi, class of '56.


To keep this somewhat bike related, my 'frozen' moment was when I participated in a 100-mile charity ride in a 45° drizzle. I was absolutely miserable, and couldn't ride the ten miles back home afterward because I was shivering so bad.
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Old 03-24-18, 06:58 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
.
, "Climbing is easier because you know where the top is," but "the wind never gives you a clue.". .
”.

That’s going on my sig.
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Old 04-02-18, 12:30 AM
  #48  
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I've ridden a recumbent for 15+ years including randonneuring and 24-hour races, limiting my upright bike to commutes and utility rides around town. Somewhere I got the crazy idea of riding a 200k on my 70's Motobecane. Bad idea. While I easily had the cardio fitness and legs for that distance, my butt, hands, neck, and back were in no way prepared for that many hours on a regular bike.
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Old 04-04-18, 03:49 AM
  #49  
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Last summer, I did a ride called the Black Fly Challenge. I underestimated the climbs and took my cyclocross (with the wrong gearing) over my MTB. Not a huge problem as the gearing was just a little too high and I would make the hills.... just much slower. I found out why it was called the Black Fly Challenge. Once you slowed down to a speed that you couldn't out run them, they would be all over you. The ride was 50% uphill and 50% downhill.....so I came home with hundreds of bites!!!
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Old 04-04-18, 06:00 PM
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Bad ideas make the best stories
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