Yesterday I rode into a tree – what daft crashes have you had?

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  • Yesterday I rode into a tree – what daft crashes have you had?
  • jaaaaaaaaaam

    it’s ok to say crap.

    Riding Fowlmeade near Deal: it’s pretty windy and slow most of the way round, I took a left a little too fast and wide, the front wheel went through some loose soil and I slumped pathetically to the ground. Embarrassing.

    Premier Icon funkrodent

    Three spring to mind..

    Years ago lost my racer at speed on a sharp downhill left in the rain. Bike slew across the oncoming traffic and the handlebar clipped the far headlight of the VW camper heading up the hill. I was thrown off the bike and onto the bonnet of a parked car. Combination of my handlebar/saddle and other bits of my bike did for the headlight and half the grille. I don’t know who was more shocked, me or the German tourist driving. Being 17 at the time I made my excuses and left on my miraculously relatively unscathed bike.

    Last year was riding a relatively gentle transitional stage on the Edale loop. Whilst scoping my line choices ahead I forgot all things to do with correct position and stood on the pedals with my weight forward. When the front wheel skittered over an innocuous stone I had no chance and supermanned OTB. Bruising and roadrash down pretty much the whole left side of my body. Pointless crash. Lesson learned.

    Coasting bike down at speed from Lee Quarry to carpark with no chain. Reached final little bit of singletrack leading to carpark. Immediate gentle right-hander with maybe 6 foot drop on left to stream. Forgot about lack of chain and went to pedal. Lost balance and veered straight over edge. Fortunately there was a tree right there and I was able to grab a branch and hang on whilst the bike hurtled from under me into the drop. My mate thought it was hilarious πŸ˜‰

    And finally. Chain snapped whilst I was crossing the road in front of a line of waiting cars. Was in a high gear and OTB’ed in front of them all whilst in full MTB kit πŸ™„


    Chose to go on a really long ride on one of those freezing cold days in-between Christmas and new year a couple of years ago.

    Coming back towards home, couldn’t feel my hands or feet and wondering why I had punished myself so much in such weather.

    Went to shift to middle chainring on front, fingers were so numb I couldn’t move the shifter. Thought to myself I know I’ll use both hands, that should do it. Took right hand off right grip and attempted to use both thumbs to move shifter on left grip. Bars instantly swung round 90 degrees and I went over them into a bush.


    I had a the biggest muddiest puddle jump out in front of me once.. As i wasnt expecting it my line through it wasn’t pre planned.

    Sudden stand still and over sideways clipped in…all to the amusement of my mate.


    When first learning to ride I tried to smash up a short steep bit, but didn’t do anything about my weight distribution. I was also only just getting used to clips. Full loop out with the bike disappearing over the top of me back down as I watched star fished on my back.

    Always brings a smile to my face when I think about it.

    Premier Icon richmtb

    Glentress POC King / Queen of the Hill Enduro 2012.

    Stage 4 I think (the one that was basically Spooky Wood plus Super G).

    Start of the stage was slightly downhill narrow singletrack across the heather moor above Spooky Wood. Pedalling hard (its a race after all!) Pick up quite a lot of speed. Notice a couple of big muddy ruts on the main line. Not a problem with the speed I’m going I’ll just need to unweight the front wheel, nothing fancy required, I’ll just skim right throu….

    Instant superman, I must have went twenty feet. Hit the deck… Ooof… At least the ground was soft… Then the bike hit me.


    back in the early 90’s i used to go to trowbridge college. i had recently bought a helmet (remember this is early 90’s none of your modern aero stealth man).

    well i was cycling back home and thought i spotted some kids i knew from secondary school.

    wearing this helmet i felt like a right burk 😳

    so i looked the other way when cycling towards them…

    not spotted the car trailer i was indirectly cycling towards 😳

    cue me going over the bars and rolling off said trailer onto the road (and amply demonstrating why the helmet was a good idea πŸ˜‰

    got up to see said kids doubled over laughing riotously 😳

    felt like a right tool 😳 as i straightened my stem and rode off πŸ™


    After dropping my son at daycare one day I got back to the bike, turned it round, helmet on, and started to roll down the sloping garden to the path that I’m about to join. I’m freewheeling down the slope, dragging the brake and going very, very slowly, maybe 1-2km/h as a) I’ve only just set off, b) I’ve only got one foot clipped in, c) in about five yards I have to make a very sharp left, where going wide around the corner will result in a dip in the estuary, and d) I’ve got my head down, checking what gear I’m in.

    As I looked up, a low branch on a nearby tree leaped out and hooked itself under the front of my helmet. The deliberate upward movement of me lifting my head segued smoothly into an unintended look up into the tree, chinstrap tightening, hands pulled off the bars, and me being very, very slowly dragged off the bike backwards… At this point I managed to get one foot down, the bike stopped with me still vaguely upright (but leaning backwards, still hooked on the branch). I then managed to undo my helmet strap and extricate myself.

    Luckily no-one was around to have seen it, but when I got to work I found that the branch, prior to hooking under the helmet, had jabbed me in the forehead, breaking the skin and leaving a big cut/scrape/welt combo slap-bang in the middle. I still have a slight scar, six months later 😳


    Ha, enjoying this thread. I sit here with a broken collar bone. I rode off a 3 foot structure and have subsequently realised that I really don’t know much about riding big drop offs that you can’t roll.

    Bit late to realise that now. Itching to get back on the bike.

    Premier Icon Keando

    Recent Sunday morning ride going downhill along a track when noticed a group of about 8 riders coming up the hill towards me so decided to do the right think and move over to the less clear part of the track so that they had the clear track to climb up. Didnt clear the centre of the track withthe front wheel and caught a ridge. Front end twisted, bike disappeared and ended up doing a superman impression into the undergrowth…
    They stopped to check I was ok & Laugh had by one and all – though I did forget to ask what the score was for Artisitic Impression and Technical Dismount!


    When in my young teens I was riding along Worthing seafront prom, and rather than look forward, I was looking at my shiny new saddle…
    The next thing I was looking at was the ground as I face planted over a bollard into the grass the other side…

    Much visual field disturbance, vomiting, and (another) head ct scan later, I was recovering on the hospital ward with a. Drip in my arm….

    Hmmm, daft.



    On my commute home a few years ago I hit a femur, half a cows femur that had probably fallen from an offal wagon, pushed me left, finished up against the kerb, couldn’t get away from the kerb, overbalanced an ended up in a heap on the grass verge. Pure comedy, jumped up quickly laughing hoping I hadn’t been seen.

    Premier Icon leftyboy

    Quite a few years ago I was following a guide on a trail in mid-Wales when he stopped and I didn’t, basically I head butted him up the arse!


    I remember on a ride with three mates, we were just starting up a featureless, smooth, car width, gentle climb. One guy leading, two following, me last. The two in the middle somehow contrive to get tangled, de-tangle too forcefully and fall over/interface with bushes. This made me laugh, but the laugh collided with my need for oxygen and my throat closed making me ride up the side of a tree and collapse. Guy in the lead looks over his shoulder and stops in disbelief at the sight of all three mates down at 3mph on a smooth surface and apparently writhing in agony – though actually laughter.

    Had two stupid ones last night, mainly because I was being a bit of a wuss as I’ve still not got my confidence fully back after my big crash last year.

    First one was following my mate down a bit of trail and over cooked it going into a corner so hard on the brakes, ass over the back wheel a bit since it was going down the hill and tried to push my weight down into the corner when suddenly the front hits a clump of grass and stops me dead throwing me OTBs only to get back on and immediately go OTBs again on a straight bit of the trail for no reason.

    Second one was not paying attention down a steep rooty through the trees section that I’ve ridden dozens of times but not on the new bike and I totally misjudged how narrow the gap was between the trees my bars get stuck between the trees and I’m immediately eating dirt with bike in hot pursuit.

    Premier Icon cliffyc

    On a night ride,(not recently ,including for humour reasons),hammering along a fell road about 30mph,forgot about the metal fell gate. Rode into it without braking,ooof!,sort of bounced back not a mark on me or bike. Gate still there,err still sorta V-shaped!. Glad I was on me own!.(And it was dark……)

    Premier Icon Yak

    Not recently.
    I was commuting through London from my job to my evening classes and my mind was absolutely miles away thinking about impending exams. Filtered through the middle of traffic queuing for lights, and was probably going a bit too quick……. and then went straight into the back of a stationary double decker bus 😯 .

    Honestly didn’t see it, or at least it didn’t register with my exam-addled brain that it might cause a problem. Didn’t brake either – just straight into the back! Luckily no breaks – just bruises, scuffs and many gobsmacked looks from all the queuing drivers.


    Slow speed into the back of a bus, coming down the Otley Road in Leeds. He was slowing down and indicating, I started looking over my shoulder to spot a gap in the traffic to go round him, next thing I know he’d stopped and I’d walloped the arse end of a double decker. No damage to me or the bike (or the bus), but a good giggle between me and the driver as I dusted myself off and rode past him sheepishly.


    One time, riding the long way home I was going over a bridge. It’s a rail bridge, maybe half a mile long, with a clip-on cycle and pedestrian path on one side. The path was maybe four feet wide, but every fifteen out so feet there was a massive iron girder, part of the bridge structure, sticking out and causing pinch points. With the bars on my commuter there was maybe an inch of clearance on either side… as the weeks went by, I got faster and faster along the bridge, until one day, doing about 15 mph I clipped a girder. Bars spun 90 degrees in an instant, over I went.

    Just after I’d picked myself up another cyclist came along, so I leaned on the railing all casual and pretended I was taking in the view…

    Premier Icon D0NK

    Had several crashes where I have been concentrating 100% on the trail and getting the bike along it forgetting about minor matters like will my shoulders/body/head go with the bike. Anything above about 3 feet I tend not to notice so have clipped several trees with shoulders etc, pretty bad off in spain where I only noticed the brambles (proper vicious spanish ones) completely covering the trail at head height last minute (bench cut kinda trail, went off the side dropped about 4′)

    Oh and not a crash but a few weeks ago I managed to cut my chin open when I ducked under a branch just as the front wheel hit a rock, chin/stem interface, that smarted a bit.

    (oh and I rode a brand new bike into a parked car coz I was looking down at my gears, but I was young and stoopid)


    Daft crashes are my speciality

    Last night: swerved to avoid a single chest-height bramble branch & went off-piste into a bramble bush

    Last weekend: a bit higher than usual on a favourite berm sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetfarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrkoooooooooooooooooooooooff

    Last week: showing matey how the bike makes absolutely no difference where obstacles are concerned. Wrong.

    Last month: I can lean over a bit on damp woodwork. Wrong again.

    Not keeping both hands on the bars and snagging baggies on the gear levers are recurring themes


    On the way to the shops with my 2 and a bit year old in the trailer. Just stalled pulling the trailer up onto the kerb. I’d forgotten that the spds on that bike were adjusted particularly tight as it’s my fast road bike so I’ll “never” want to unclip in a hurry.
    I fell sideways (painlessly) in front of the shops, then lay on the floor struggling to get my feet out of the pedals.
    It’s my first SPD related low speed fall in 15 years + since I actually got used to them.
    Oh and my daughter still points at the bike I was riding, a month on from the incident, and says “You fell off that bike, daddy! Silly daddy!”.

    Premier Icon uphillcursing

    Few years ago I was out for a ride with Offspring #1. Using the old retro thing with canti brakes. Had to undo the rear brake as one of the blocks slipped and was rubbing the tyre. Not an issue when riding with a 5 yo.

    On the way home was wheeleing up the road and went to feather the rear brake. Went down hard. Really hard. Laid on the floor for ages trying not to move in case of permanent damage. Last time I forewent a helmet. Eventually had to get up as Offspring was getting worried. Was sorely embarrassed.

    Premier Icon cardo

    Recent spill was trying to scoop under a branch of a fallen tree, which was slightly lower than expected and caught me by my camelback cue being ejected from bike which ghosted down the trail and me being spat into the undergrowth with a large branch for company… mates thought it was hilarious and slightly spectacular.


    Last saturday at bike park wales, me and a mate are slip sliding down Halfcut, not entirely in control it has to be said. I take a little lie down on a wet root, and in his attempt to not run over me, my mate, who can’t brake because of the steepness of the track, opts to try to grab a tree. Well, it works, and rather better than he expected because one of the belt loops on his shorts gets hooked around a short stumpy bit of branch sticking out from the tree, and he wedgies himself quite effectively, and is left hanging, without his bike from said tree, unable to get free! Needless to say, i laughed quite a bit πŸ˜‰


    A while ago now, on the last day of another fine week in verbier with bike verbier, we had just ridden down a cracking trail at pace to avoid the incoming storm, the trail was technical and fast and in places a bit tricky, all successfully negotiated. Whilst riding along a flat path back to a small village Phil rides gently over a small bridge followed by a very good riding mate who makes a meal of the little bridge. Bravado over takes skill as i wheelie onto the planked bridge, my back wheel splits the planks and it is then i notice the big drop to the side where despite my flapping arms is where i am heading….i proceed to do a swallow dive into a small ravine onto alot of pointy rocks (about 4 metres drop) que alot of funny noises from me some white looking faces from my mates and a trip to the hospital and 6 months off the bike! still could have been worse the ledge i landed on led to an even bigger drop!


    Most embarrassing recently – Bristol Bikefest, fast fire road decent, into gentle right hander and boggy section, which is the start of the Red Bull timed section. Dab a bit of front and rear to control speed, front immediately starts to slide out, and I’m a passenger as I veer hard right and slam straight into the Red Bull sign / pallet, with inevitable OTB consequences. Fortunate for the soft landing, and bike in one piece.

    Premier Icon adsh

    Late for one of the brass monkeys starts. Pedal up, slow down, cross rutand fall off in front of the entire field……

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