Hit a submerged hippo in a (slow) motor boat on Lake Naivasha, Kenya.
Scared the crap outa me as we bounced over the top.
Squirel on head? Strangest interaction with wildlife whilst riding.......
Hit a submerged hippo in a (slow) motor boat on Lake Naivasha, Kenya.
Few years ago i was on a road ride through Holsworthy in Devon, when a buzzard (i think) swooped down from behind me i could see its shadow on the road next to me and then a big whoosh and thud as it put its talons into the back of my helmet. When i stopped sprinting away and slowed down, at least 20 miles up the road, i found my helmet had puncture marks all through at the back and it had pierced the shell.
Apparently said bird was known for attacking cyclists in the area as it had babys to protect.
Have also run over a basking adder it was on a pretty fast downhill and both wheels went over I did stop and look back and it was writhing about so I decided not to go back in case it was injured and went for me shortly after I saw a buzzard circling so I hope if the snake was badly hurt he may have gone and finished it off. Could have been a lot worse (for me not the snake) often had to untangle branches and brambles from the cassette or between the wheel and chainstay wouldn't fancy having to untangle an angry snake from my bike!
Also had an owl give a million decibel "TOOWIIIT!!" at me about three foot from my ear on a solo night ride. I hadn't even seen him and it scared the sh?t out of me! There's a camp-site at the bottom if the woods and people staying there must have wondered why an owls screech was answered by a bloke shouting swear words in the middle of the night!
Thinking about it we've had a few incidents with fauna over the years. As well as the previously mentioned deer:
We once all climbed over a style into a narrow footpath (yeah, yeah...) it was a metre or so wide with a fence one side and a hedge the other and it was dark. The horse that had got out of its field and got stuck in it panicked by our lights charged us. We had nowhere to go! A few minor injuries and bits of damage from that one!
We had another deer which we accidentally cornered (again on a night ride) that charged and jumped over us.
On another night: my mate felt an impact and something clinging to his chest: on inspection it was a bat!
I came round a corner once to face a young badger hissing and spitting at me from about 3 feet away.
Found an adder happily basking in the sun right next to the start of a section of trail at Kirroughtree.
When doing a heli drop in Whistler we spotted a cat like creature sat on a rock some distance away. Someone asked "is that a cougar?" Our guide replied "No. That's a bobcat. If you see a cougar? It's too late!!"
I've seen plenty of other wildlife without incident (bears, foxes, owls, etc etc). Always a highlight in a ride.
My buddy was riding home from Victoria to Balham in London, went through a bunch of pigeons. I'd previously told him that pigeons tend not to fly into you, because they can see you coming. One of them did, and apparently got stuck in his spokes, throwing him OTB, and mashing itself.
I get attacked by some kind of blackbird thing when I run home along a footpath; it always goes for the back of my head. The first couple of times I thought it was a branch or something thwacking me. Might have to stick eyes on the back of my head to stop it...
surprised no-ones mentioned the Whistler black bears yet.
four of us rode out of some tree cover towards the bottom of Schleyer (a trail in Whistler Bike Park) and were confronted by a mother bear and her two cubs (bloody big cubs) coming up the singletrack trail about 20m away. everyone stopped, including the bear family, for a few seconds then Mrs Bear decided there was nothing amiss and continued up the trail towards us. Our only escape route was to get off our bikes and scurry through the thick, waist-height, grass off to the the right of the trail.
there was no obvious threat from the bears, but it was still bloody scary to be so close and despite having bikes capable of riding off drops and through rock gardens they were next to useless off the beaten track.
DD it was a Jackdaw (I think) and it was a touching moment as two species interacted
This morning at Gowerton train station a young squirrel was rummaging around in a tree about 2ft from us, it wasn't the slightest bit bothered.
why are robins so tame?
are they just a bit stupid?
I've come across the Gisburn deer as well, only on early morning rides though. Didn't try to take me on though, I must have looked 'ard or something.
Got a good pecking off a big swan on the towpath near me before spotting the silly bugger had put his nest right next to the path. He must have spent the best part of two months attacking one dog walker or cyclist every few minutes.
Not riding, but walking. Clambered and scrambled up a wee glen to the top of a ridge on the Isle of Mull. Just as I was struggling to my feet and somewhat raspy of breath I looked up to see a chuffing great eagle sitting on a rock.. .. about 10 yds away.
I looked at it... It looked at me...
I could tell it was thinking 'What the heck are you doing here? This is my place'
Then after deciding that I was too big to eat it spread its wings and glided silently away.
Had a deer jump from the high-side of a trail about 6 feet in front of me when on a night ride up a narrow canyon--scared the bejeezus out of me.
A few years back, riding the Colorado trail between Molas Pass and Durango and came around a blind corner to find a bull elk standing in the middle of the trail--right during mating season when they are a little touchy about things but, fortunately, I didn't bear any semblance to a cow elk.
I was cycling through Richmond Park with a mate on the road bike when a bird - possibly a blackbird flew into the front wheel, this then fired the now dead bird up into my chest and it then dropped onto my thighs before falling onto the road, a very distracting experience.
A mate ran over a badger once, I was behind, the looked like tried to take a bite of his leg then ran off unharmed!
Not bike-related but..
Few years ago we were on a road trip along I-10 just into Mississippi when we saw a sign for an alligator farm that you could visit.
We drove up the dirt track to be greeted by what looked like the cast of Deliverance, and paid our entrance money.
One part of the experience was a ride in an airboat - great thing, big flat-bottomed boat with a huge Chevy V8 strapped to the top of a frame and a whocking great prop stuck on the drive shaft!
Anyway, we set off across this swamp and came to an open bit of water. The bloke driving the boat is ok 'cos he's 7ft up in the air but i'm about 6" above the water, we sped up and hit what felt like lots of logs floating in said water.
Looking back there appeared to be a few dozen seriously pee'd off 'gators getting rather agitated about having sore heads!
I asked the nice man if we could go back a different way please!
I kayaked to Lundy Island once, and a Basking shark swam but metres from my little craft....
looked out of geography classroom and saw a deer about 5' away. running in chilterns had 4 deer run across my path about 12' away. lots of deer here.
Mate was riding down a Col in France and the guy in front had his back wheel taken out by a wild boar, scared the **** out of him.
Have been hit by flying fish when sailing in warmer climes.
riding through my local woods on the way home going at a fair pace smooth down hill track saw wood pigeon at side of track startled it decided to fly off straight into my path feathers everywhere got home went to hose bike down then noticed all the feathers stuck in chainrings etc.
Couple of years ago riding Dalby on a really hot day, a common lizard (the first lizard I had ever seen in this country) tried to run across my path. Like many other wildlife killers on this thread, I still feel pretty bad about it.
Many years earlier, cycling to work, I slammed the anchors on when a fox came out of someones drive. This resulted in a massive endo and my nose being about 3 inches from the fox's. Somehow I held it until the fox reacted and shot off.
Riding around the side of the Malverns last winter: there is a section where they put cattle to 'keep the vegetation down' and it's right in the way of our winter run.
Anyhoo, riding past the cows is normally quite easy as they stay out of your way and let you pass. Unless your my mate Si when the cow he was passing decided to give him the cold 'udder' and, as he went around the outside of said cow with a nice steep drop on the other side, the cow decided to edge slowly towards the outside of the path knocking him down the slope into some very deep bracken and gorse.
Needless to say none of us laughed and helped him up straight away..
Rode past a pair of fighting deer* in the NF one night - passed within about 4 feet
They were obviously busy as they didn't appear to notice us at all
Lots of "ladies" in the vicinity too. Waiting to see who was going to become the boss, presumably
*I'd have said "stags" but that would make you think of massive red deer; these were a bit littler but I was still wondering whether they might have a go at us and how much damage they could do
Nearly ran over a rattlesnake once in California. Nice wide fire road so got past easily enough (again, it didn't seem to give a shit; just sat there basking in the sun)
Also in california I caught a guy on a long climb (novelty for me!) just after I'd passed a slighty weird looking tarantula disappearing off the trail edge out of the corner of my eye> I'd seen a couple before so didn't bother to stop & look
The lad I caught told me he'd spent 10 minutes watching a wasp stinging the spider and dragging it off to its nest. Supposedly a pretty rare sight that I just missed
Natural order was then restored as this guy roared away from me up the rest of the hill
I'm pretty sure that my hope hub attracted a bat this evening.. It was just dimpsy and there was an occasional bat milling about, but as I freewheeled for 50 yards or so to alert some walkers to my presence, one bat seemed to home in on me and flew alongside briefly, before turning sharply and flying into my shoulder.. they are incredibly light..!
Thinking about it I should have perhaps stopped and asked it if it was ok..
Also there are a gazillion of these little fellas on a slow woodland climb that I ride often.. so many that it's really difficult to avoid them.. is that a normal occurrence or is it peculiar to this particular trail..?
I've had a bat fly into my face. Hit right between my eyes, under the helmet peak. It writhed around on the ground a bit, got up, and flew off uncertainly.
Ran over a snake in France as a teenager. No idea what sort of snake, and it had slithered off the singletrack when I crept back to have a look. That alone was a miracle given that I hit it with my Raleigh Amazon, which weighed the same amount as eight hippos.
On a night ride last winter a badger ran out of the hedge and onto the road i was cycling along.. it was just running alongside me not quite knowing what to do. This carried on for about 15 seconds before it dived off into the hedge. Same night an owl glided alongside me for about 5 seconds too.
Freakiest experience with wildlife has been surfing. In Australia i was surfing alone at a place called Whale Beach. Beautiful sunny morning and totally clear water. Out of nowhere an absolute massive shoal of fish comes into the bay (probably chasing sand eels or small fry etc). I was literally in the middle of the shoal and caught a small wave... It was just amazing surfing through the shoal as hundreds of fish were frantically diving out of my way just a few feet from the front of my board. It was like parting a way through the shoal. I paddled back out through the shoal then suddenly a realisation set in. A shoal this big has GOT to attract bigger predators .. namely sharks!! Dont think ive ever paddled so freaking fast in my life. I stood on the beach and watched from the safety of the shore as several large splashes broke the surface of the water sending panicking fish everywhere. Never saw the bigger fish / sharks but it was one of those big sighs of relief to hit the sand.
Once caught a 6-8ft thresher shark just off Tenby whilst bass fishing.. I thought i had caught the mother of all bass fish as i started to wind it in.. then my line went very slack. Wound my reel in thinking id lost it and about 10ft from the boat a massive grumpy thresher shark came literally thrashing out of the water into the air. Then swims straight down snapping my line 5 secs later. I just stood there with my mouth open unable to comprehend what id just caught (*got away).
Stacked on a badger coming out of a hedgerow. On two separate occasions! Must have got a badger magnet in my front wheel (fnar). They're pretty chunky beasts alright.
Numerous other near encounters such as stags, foxes, rabbits but none quite as painful. I think my favourite is the barn owl that flies along in front of me on one particular stretch of my routes.
Dunno about 'strangest', but 3 days ago we had a very close encounter with a buzzard so busy eating a dead sheep that it didn't hear us come....and that was on the bridleway bit of the Offas Dyke path just off the Kerry Ridgeway.
2 or 3 years ago I had a race with a muntjack deer in the snow and ice - he won!
Riding at night in Whinlatter a deer jumped in front o me whilst I was in mid air. Just Missed
Nearly ran over a couple of Tiger Snakes recently.
Riding in Eagle Park in Adelaide there was a stick on the trail - as I approached it jumped up and did the full Hiss thing before slithering off - Brown Snake
Early morning rides in Stromlo or Melrose (not in the borders) were always accompanied by Kangeroos. Always hoping that a 6ft grey would stick to the direction signs.
mered - Member
I would actually do if it charged us.
Get knocked on your ar53 and be in a fair amount of pain. Trust me those buggers hurt when the run into you.
I had a crash hat/squirrel incident a year or so ago when one tried to jump across the trail from a wall into a tree.
A riding buddy had one run into his front wheel which should've ended up like Madfly' photo however, it came from the right & he was riding a Lefty. The squirrel survived but was catapulted quite a way down the trail.
I recon there's some more milage left in this photo..
Not mine i'm afraid though
Most probably the guy started to notice that his front brake was getting a bit squirrely...
Put my bike down to take some photos last year. When I picked it up again, there was an adder coiled around the right-hand grip!
Fortunately, I'd picked it up by the other grip (then put it down again swiftly!).
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