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anyone have any stories of their encounters with animals?
I'll go first
last year i was on the trails up north, just having fun going downhill and boom a black bear was right in front of me (about 15 feet away from me) i brake so hard and i turned around and got out of there asap
luckily it didn't chase me
 

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Turkeys are common.
Deer are frequent
See bobcats on occasion
Years ago, before my biking hiatus, I ran into a mountain lion
that was,... interesting. It was 20ft away.
same era, riding with friends, they were ahead of me on the trail. Suddenly they blast past me yelling "GO! GO! GO!"
I didn't hesitate, I turned around and followed.
Then I found out they came across a Llama. A freaking Llama deep in the forest. It was blocking the path. The idiots tossed rocks and were yelling to get it to move, it didn't like that and charged and chased them.
All the time I thought it was a bear or mountain lion....
 

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A creepy encounter: My home trails are connected to the trailhead by a mile and a half of straight, rails-to-trails doubletrack through a forest. At night, it looks like an endless dark tunnel through the trees. So, I was finishing up a night ride and heading out. Up ahead, I see a pair of glowing eyes really low to the ground. I'm thinking maybe raccoon, they were about that low. As I got closer, they started to rise up, and up, and up. They seemed to nearly reach the height of a person. Just as this thing was starting to get into range of my spotlight, it turned around and bolted through the trees. All I could make out of it's body was that it was big and covered with short, brown hair. I'm guessing it was a deer, browsing on something on the trail and looking up at me when I got close. Or maybe a chupacabra, either one.

A scary encounter: The trail system also has wild hogs. On a ride last spring I came across three or four tiny little piglets on the trail. They decided to hide from me by running to the edge of the trail, burying their faces in the grass, and squealing bloody murder. I turned around and got out of there before mama came to the rescue.

A surreal encounter: On one of my last night rides this spring, just after sunset, I kept coming across doves just sitting in the middle of the trail. They'd take off only when I got close to them. Must have seen 5 or 6 of them, I lost count. Strange because I rarely see doves at all. I was wondering if they were some sort of omen, or maybe I had accidentally wandered onto the set of a John Woo film. I kept an eye out for slow-motion gunfights. If something exploded behind me I was ready to keep on riding without looking back or flinching.
 

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Yeah, I've come head to head with a coyote before. I was riding the hunting trails across the street from my house and we bumped into and scared the crap out of each other. I also encountered a black bear once in central FL. We also scared the crap out if each other. I rode like the wind to get as far from it as I could.

Sent from my HTC stone tablet and chisel.
 

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deer, elk, bear(black and grizzly), moose, bobcats, turkeys, grouse. it is uncommon not to see wildlife on the trail.
 

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Just people with their dogs off leash, illegally of course
Nothing bothers me more than this. There's a conservation area up the road from me and a section of it was turned into an off leash dog park a few years back. Last year I'm riding through the forest, far from the off leash area when a dog runs up to me and starts barking. I get off my bike and put it in between me and the dog. It lunges towards me growling and barking. I finally see the owners and yell at them "come get your dog right now!!". Their response is "Calm down, if you're scared of dogs maybe you shouldn't ride your bike in here". They didn't care one bit when I pointed out that it was not an off leash area.
 

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Seen a fox when I cornered real hard and he/she looked at me and shot off into the forest.

Came across a spike buck blocking the trail, and that SOB wouldn't move! Just stood there starring at me for 2-4 minutes I said, eff it and took another route.

Nearly ran over a couple snakes a few times, both times were black king snake. I left them in peace to keep the rattlers away.
 

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A couple of years ago they started grazing sheep on the FS land at one of my favorite loops. It's a 5 mile climb from the car and a ripping, 7 mile descent on buffed singletrack back to the parking lot for high-fives and adult beverages.

On the way up my friend and I noticed sheep wagons, but didn't think anything of them. After a brief water break and a deciding ro-sham-bo at the top, we were ready for the down. I took the win with the rock over scissors and was stoked to be going first since the previous two times we rode, he came away with the win.

Came ripping around a corner to find the flock of sheep that belonged to those wagons and I had to dump a good amount of speed. I can hear my buddy screaming 'GO, GO, GOOOO!!!' as he comes down the trail. At this moment, I notice a dog, the size of a small horse, at full gait, coming for me through the sage brush. Two of them were already onto him. Those Great Pyrenees chased us a good ways down the trail.

Nobody rides that trail much anymore for fear of getting eaten by one of those monstrous beasts.
 

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Deer are pretty norm for me and plenty of the smaller critters. Only close call was came out of a fast but narrow "s" section to almost get a face full of deer ass!!! 2 sitting on the trail right outta the turn. Everywhere I ride is wooded with decently thick undergrowth, so no way of seeing them till last second. Hit brakes so hard I had to drop off pedals and racked myself. Swear if deer and crapped itself outta fear it would have been on my front tire. I hollered back to my brother who was coming up behind me so he could stop before hitting me. That scared the deer off. We had a good laugh about the whole thing while I let the pain in my jewels wear off.

Then this last weekend, first time on dirt this year, took my 7yr old son for a ride on our favorite trails. He was just cruising along enjoying his newly rebuilt bike to even notice when he almost ran it over, but I saw it coiling back almost in the middle of a turn. Startled me to see a snake on the trail, first time for me. Luckily was just a yearling garter snake. Didn't even take a snip at us, was more of an "oh **** that was almost my head" reaction, waited for me to pass and went on his way.

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got charged by a javelina last week on a trip to phoenix. as my friend remarked "around where we are from, the trails are nice are peaceful... in phoenix, everything pretty much wants to kill you". Saw another in Sedona the same week. maybe i've been marked.
 

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Some years back I was riding a fairly new singletrack early in the morning with a buddy at our local state forest. I was in the lead and came around a blind corner with some speed and saw something in the trail ahead of me on the ground that was clearly living (i.e. furry, not a tree). Grabbed a handful of panic brake and in the course of sailing over the bars realized it was Bambi sleeping in the middle of the trail. White spots and everything. I nearly landed on it and in scampering away it gave me a little kick then was gone. I got up and rolled out pretty fast for fear of momma who I knew had to be close by. That was my closest so far...
 

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A few years ago I was riding when I stopped and saw a fawn standing close to the trail by the treeline so I stopped and took a picture of it. Didn't see mama deer at the time but as soon as I snapped the pic I heard this aweful, hidious, high-pitched, horror movie like snort that the sound of which shot down my spine fast and furiously.

Literally scared the crap out of me - it was mama deer and she wasn't all that happy with me taking a picture of her fawn - she was scooping the ground with her front leg and I believed then it was my time to keep on pedaling - which I commenced to doing.

I have seen many a deer - had a 6 point buck standing in the middle of the trail and had to wait 3 minutes or so for him to get off the trail. Gotta give them their space as it is their home we are riding our bikes.
 

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Almost ran into this snake. Just was getting started on the trail. Came around a turn and the snake was right in the middle of the trail. I stopped about 3 feet from the snake. It coiled up instantly and stayed there for about 10 minutes.

I've encountered a Florida Panther, hogs, snakes, deer, armadillos (never know which way they'll run), alligators, etc. Always an adventure.
 

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