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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'd be interested to hear what you guys rate as your most stupid, asking-to-get-mashed bit of riding was.

Mine is probably taking a bus back from a little solo tour I did and realising that if I got off an hour before I was due to arrive in Belgrade (read my blog for where?!), I could take a "shortcut" home by bike.

Only thing was, it was 3 a.m. and the "shortcut" involved a 25 mile ride and included a 1500ft hill (tarmac, luckily).

There was NOTHING open along the way, so I couldn't buy batteries for my front lights, and it was VERY dark. The route is a truck route, thus there were trucks hurtling past me every few minutes. The hill (when I finally got to it, after a REALLY dull flat ride) is a challenge in the daytime (about 3 miles of constant slog), never mind after 3 hours' sleep in a bus, in pitch darkness, with forest all around, and cars and trucks racing down, not in the LEAST expecting to see a cyclist!

The last challenge was to descend the hill the other side (usually takes 5 minutes, at 50mph!) with no lights and in the freezing cold. In the end, I got behind a truck and followed him down at snail's pace all the way, taking 20 minutes at least - and that is by far the slowest I have ever descended THAT hill!

And all this was done on some crappy supermarket excuse for a bike that I was riding at the time (was still getting into MTB then).

If that wasn't asking to get mashed I don't know what was... Still, it's fun to tell at parties, MTB forums, etc. :)

But I know you can beat that!

markowe

P.S. I wore a helmet!!
 

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Grip it and rip it.
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Don`t know if i can top that! But three occasions spring to mind.


The first was when me and a mate had a planned a road ride we wanted to do, and we were going to do it no matter what. We had planned the route and the day for pretty much over a month. And of course on the day we picked to ride, all the roads were icy but we thought it would be alright.
Then when we started to get higher in the mountains road conditions only got worse, but our cockiness and confidence got us through most of the bad stuff at the start. Then we pretty much come close to the top of the mounatin we were aiming for, at a crossroads and the road we were on for the fist part must of been facing south we would come to realise. We see a sign saying ROAD CLOSED., its the road we want to ride on, barriers blocking it ..........do we ride on it anyways? We look at each other, Yup were riding it! We ride onto this road off the crossroads along the side off the mountain and it`s BLACK ICE straight away, i mean thick, mean looking.. we`re riding skinny tired road bikes asswell. Lets just let the brakes go and let the good times roll then! Untill you fall samck on your a$$!!!! And again, and AGAIN!!!!!! No way but down too!
No cars or anything around because they`ve got more sense than us. That was definately the longest descent of my life so far, its only a 2.5 mile descent but felt ALOT longer!!!!



Number two has to be when i was doing a MTB enduro and there were these guys that ripped by me on the climbs but then when it came to the descent`s they were slow as paint drying. I decided i had to rip by them, risking life or limb. Coming to an off camber, steep left hand turn i saw a gap between the riders and the tree`s, decided it was my only chance and took three of the mo fo`s out in one go, that amused me greatly. They did`nt get me on the next climb luckily because i was asking for abuse on that one, so close to them.


Number three is too long to write about right now!!
 

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I'm sure others will have much better stories. I tend to be a very conservative rider, but-

On Mountain bike-

1- Into a stream a bit deeper than I thought, hit a rock a bit bigger than I expected- sudden stupid looking stop.

2- Through a formerly muddy cattle wallow, bone dry clay soil as hard as concrete, and down into a near axle deep rut- sudden stupid looking stop followed by pitching over.

On a road bike, a bit more serious-

Descending a steep hill at night, going slow, around 30MPH, expecting my 25 watt light to warn me of anything on the road and being able to steer around it. Into the beam pops a piece of metal flashing bigger than a 2x4 more than 6 feet long, perpendicular to the road. There's no way to go around it. I thought I was in for a serious crash. I squared up, tapped the brakes, and did my best to bunny hop but not enough. To my surprise I stayed upright. An even bigger surprise was that when I got stopped I couldn't find any damage. I thought for sure I'd be replacing two tires and wheels, but no damage.
 

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being bored at work and convincing the loading dock security guard to let me jump off of the loading dock on my rigid 29er. It's a pretty tall loading dock ( 6 or 7 feet up ) and the landing is cobblestone ( weird old philadelphia buildings ) . i tacoed both wheels but rode it out. That security guard still laughs at me when he sees me. i was a pitiful sight walking that bike home after work that day.
 

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Playing in wind fall

I went riding after the big wind storm here in Seattle. There were trees down every 40 feet or so, and the trial was 3 inches deep in pine branches. I went down a big hill and found about 25-30 downed trees in a big pile blocking the trail. I didn't want to ride up the hill with all the branches on the trail, so I picked up the bike and climbed over and under a ten foot tall 25 foot wide pile of highly unstable windfall. It shifted and moved but nothing fell. Likely the dumbest thing I have ever done with a 30lb bike in one hand.
 

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Downtown river embankment 200 feet high. Straight down oh 35 degrees, can't hardly push up it.

Deeply rain rutted, two corners, then a right angle corner with a big branch at head height.

We quit trying it when the leaves fell off, and the branch sticks out bare and gnarly.
 

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I was riding Cameron Park and came on this trail that I'm pretty sure wasnt for bikes. It was limestone stairsteps, about 2-3ft forward and 1-2ft down. I made it over the first one, realized I hadnt lowered my seat, decided to keep going. The second step I endoed, smacked my unpadded knee on the limstone, and came down on my helmet with a resounding crunch. All still clipped in too. The bike had a small gouge in the carbon of the lever, and I was pretty banged up. It took me 10 minutes to walk down the last 100ft of this trail with bike in hand. The ride continued at a slower pace.
 

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less is more
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Yeah, I took a 2 x 12 ish board across a creek. If I went off I'd be stuck 2 ft down in marsh muck. I rode right across. Everyone else got off. Stupid but well done.
 

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I live to bike
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"Rocky" is what we called the 4 foot rock drop alongside the trail. At night, in the snow, without a light, for the first time ever -- those were the conditions leading up to the attempt. I should also mention that it was a very technical drop -- up a small ladder, onto a rock, down a small ladder to the rock that you drop off. From base of second ladder to lip of the drop was less than one bike length--so best done as a wheelie drop, not just speed and a pull on the bars. Did I mention yet that I was not very proficient at wheelie drops?
After several run-ups, I decide to give it a go (I just about always decide to give it a go, no matter how foolish it is). Up ladder, across rock, down ladder, across rock, nose dive, land smack on top of my head. I do believe the top of my head hit first, even before the front wheel. Somehow, although my helmet broke, the light on top of my helmet did not. Of course, now you're thinking, "you said you didn't have a light." No, I didn't. I said I didn't do it with a light. I had a light, I just didn't use it. (The moon was quite bright, just my brain wasn't!) Pretty foolish bit of riding, but thank the Lord I wasn't injured.
 

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Out there
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Ooooh, tha's easy.

1987, England. My mates and I were going on a cycle touring holiday in the Lake District. I got the train to the wrong station. It was forty miles up hill and down dale from the right station, where my friends were. We managed to communicate via the Station Manager's telephone. We agreed to meet halfway, only it was dark and we had no lights.

We both cycled across the moors through through the most miserable, dark, moonless night to the rendezvous. It was SO dark that at road junctions I had to literally go up to the road signs and FEEL them to figure out where I was. I have never been so scared in my life. When we finally met up we almost cycled RIGHT PAST each other.

When we finallyl unrolled the tents and tried to set them up, I discovered I had left my tent pegs at home and was forced to use cutlery instead.

Two days later a freak hurricane ripped our tents apart and we were forced to abandon the whole venture.

A search for "Quiraing" should throw up the SECOND most foolish bit of riding we ever did.
 

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It owuld have to be the night before I was supposed to pack and ship my bike out to Moab for a trip we'd been planning for months. It also happened to be the last night the BMX track would be open while I was home untill the following season. All fall I'd been working up to hitting the biggest jump. And I had decided tonight was the night, I spent all night going at it then bailing for the smaller table next to it. Did I mention I was riding my Mountain Bike? In the end I realized my trip to moab would be better then hitting a jump so I called it quits without hitting it.

But then, I'm riding in circles waiting for my buddy to finishing talking, and looking at this 6 foot high retaining wall. Then my buddy sees me near it and says I should do it. Ok, I've done almost that high. Without any hesitation I go to wheelie drop onto the uphill landing, but my rear tire gets hooked up on the lip of the wall and I go over face first. Smash my Giro switchblade, and taco my front wheel. That was pretty damn dumb.

Luckily, the manager of the shop I was working at said it would be cool for me to show up at the distributer in town when they open at 7am and pick up a rim on the shops account. I managed to get a rim, build a wheel and pack and ship my bike before I had to be at work at 11.
 

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don't move for trees
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worst i've done is rode a down hill course with 5 inches of snow on it, in trees and supper rocky. in normal condition you have no problem lockin up the rear and still gain speed, this was also the first time riding this trail, luckly the snow cushioned most of the falls, but not enough, but its still a sweet trail, ride it almost every week (when theres not snow!)
 

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Ride 2 Work, Work 2 Ride!
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Toad's wild ride. Following a bunch of racers. Did this ten mile "Misses Toad's" first. Ended up at the bottom right were we started. Then right back up the same climb to do Toad's. Just barely made it to the cars before dark. Some of the craziest climbs and downhills.

Riding Downyville on a hardtail with 80mm of travel,.. twice in one day. Oh, yeah v-brakes. At one point I couldn't hold the brakes to stop my arms were so screwed.

Riding the whole Flume trail front and back. Not enough food. Total bonk. Rode up to the car in the dark. When you put yourself in a position that you have to do it, it is incredible what you can do!
 

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~I Ride In Circles ~
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First time going to a pretty large trail section in a town near here... My friend and I start the ride and see the trailhead in the distance. We could see that it was a downhill from our angle but never bothered to check. I'm maybe 20 feet behind him as I see him disappear over the lip. I hear him yell and scream but it was too late for me to react. (only been riding a month at this point) I go over the edge and see a series of 8 or so log steps cut into the hill. Maybe 2 feet high with a 3 foot landing between each. Somehow we both managed to get down without wrecking. At the bottom we both get off our bikes and stand at the base of the hill. At this point I realize it's one of those steeeeep hills you sidestep down the steps..

I still don't know how we both made it down that section. I attribute speed to the only real reason.
 

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Addicted 2 building trail
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Lost on Tiger Mt.

It was late winter and I'd never ridden Tiger Mt. before. I looked up the route online, study the map in the parking lot and and set off.

On the way, I knew I had to buy a snack or something, but never stopped. But hey, it's not a huge ride and I'll be back by lunch, right.

Tiger Mt. is a steep fire road for 4 miles, but when I get to the trail head there is a little snow and a sign saying that the trail is closed in the winter! Feeling particularly responsible that day, I decide to just ride the fire road for a bit. The road goes down, past another trail that has a sign saying "no bikes". So, I keep on the fire road which climbs up to some wireless towers. I see a trail that has nothing on it, saying not open to bikes, and I figure it must go back down towards the car.

It's a great trail, rooty, steep and a little slick from the ice and snow. Lots of fun. Mid way down I pass a party of hikers, who give me the evil eye. Oops, maybe I shouldn't be on this trail, but I'm committed now. So, I keep going down, but start to have second thoughts of the sanity of my choice. I'm starting to get hungry and my water is getting low. Eventually, I meet a couple hiking, who inform me that I'm on the opposite side of the mountain to my car & the only way back, is over the top again.

It's too steep to ride, so I push. Half way up my water runs out and I'm starting to feel a little weak. When I finally get to the top, it is starting to get late and there really is the most amazing view. Everything is red and the sky is reflecting off the water and the Olympic Mountains. But, I don't stop long as I'm tired, it's getting late and it's cold.

Back down the forest road, I get to where that trail is, that says "no bikes". Faced with a steep forest road climb or a trail that is going down ( I'm sure towards the car ) I take the "no bike" trail. Now, I'm usually respectful of such things, but my blood sugar is really low at this point, I'm out of water and starting to get a little stupid.

It turns out of coarse that the trail is not all down, and when I finally pop out on the road at the bottom, I'm faced with, turning left and ride up or turning right and riding down. You guessed it, I go down, figuring down has to be out! After a steep down for a mile or so the road crosses a river and starts to climb. It's getting dark and I'm feeling really lost.

At this point a white pick up comes over the hill. I flag him down and he gives me a ride. The guy has a christian radio show on and it turns out that, that day he was my guardian angel ;) He runs a paragliding school up on the mountain and has a key to the road. Otherwise my chances of meeting anyone out there was zero. I get back to my car at dusk.

Lesson learned. Always take several Cliff Bars and a map.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Oh man, let's not even get started on getting lost in the dark... A little solo cycling expedition I did to Slovenia (to escape from work for a few days, I was going nuts) was largely spent riding cold and wet in the dark and ending up on the wrong side of mountains (though it was a GREAT holiday apart from that!) How is it that I can set off on a marked trail, plus with instructions from the local expert, and still end up wildly off course in the wrong valley?!
But it can be verging on the suicidal to set out totally unprepared - you can end up spending a very unpleasant cold wet night out in the middle of nowhere, or at worst actually risk your life. I'll never do anything like that again, no siree...! ;) I've gotta start using these GPS thingummies - just mark where the car is and you can't miss it, right?

Takes all the fun out of it though...
 

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ok, so were riding along, the day before my front brake housing started leaking and i hadnt had time to get some new housing. no biggie i hardly use my front brake. so were riding along one of the local freeride trails i put together, i know the trail well, so i casually coast through, hitting this and that. turn a corner and bam...someone had left thier tools on the ground. so the front wheel slips out, not a problem. after a quick dust and check i discover the brake lever has popped out (the back this time) ok pop it back in, perfect. and were off...nearing the end of the trail with a shady back brake, and no front i hit the last drop. (small, fairly easy little stunt) its about 6ft from lip to landing, with a butter smooth tranny. what makes it difficult is the 90 degree turn folowing about 15 yards after...so its hit the drop, hard on the brakes.

heres where it gets sketchy, the lever decides this would be a wonderfull time to say good bye to its rightfull socket and it heads the wrong way. in this case forward, out of my reach not connected to anything but a fistfull of air. so hit the drop, land, reach for the brakes...

nothing, what? nothing. grabing with a full hand i find no lever. 10 yards....5 yards. umm, no brakes, forest fast approaching. anyone who has ridden this trail knows its a dense forest that comes up quick. so its ghost rider to the rescue...he takes over my bike while i bail of the back. perfect, i skid along the grass on my bottom at 30, while my bike glides nicely into a tree. dust and check and were off again...with a green bottom and no brakes, this time were going to the shop
 
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