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  1. #1
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    Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    OK, so maybe I fall down some times on a technical section of trail. I will be coming out to AZ. in the near future to ride. I have been there a few times but never had the chance to ride there. After reading this forum it's clear to me that I may encounter a snake or two. That does not bother me except for the fore mentioned fact about falling once in a while.

  2. #2
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    if it's across the trail and too late to stop, just ride over it and yell loudly to anyone behind you.

    there are no double D's in riding,,, although i'd surely welcome more of them...

  3. #3
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    ...
    Last edited by ARIZycle; 07-15-2013 at 07:48 AM.

  4. #4
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    typically, you wont find rattlers on technical sections of a trail. in my 16+ years of riding the AZ deserts, I haven't seen any in the rougher techy bits of trail. they are looking for food and dont like dragging belly across the scratchy rocks. so they seem to stick to the flatter,smoother ground, and denser brush and cacti. others may have had differing experience, but that is mine. I have seen my share of snakes, but your timing has to be perfect to have one on the actual trail. As mentioned above, just ride past to a safe position and then enjoy watching the snake do it's thing...or not!
    RAM speed: UP, UP, and away....!

  5. #5
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    I've never seen them in the winter in Phoenix, maybe other's have.

    If you're going in the summer, it's likely to be a billion degrees and the sun will bake a roast on the rocks. There's no shade and you're not likely to find them just hanging out in the middle of the trail, they'd be in the shade. That and you got armor on likely for riding south-mountain. I don't think this is ever an issue.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  6. #6
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    No. Never.

  7. #7
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    Re: Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    The only rattlesnake I've ever seen in a technical section was halfway down the waterfall on National Trail here in Phoenix. I was carrying my bike up that section and before I got anywhere near it, it let me know was there. Scared the bejesus out of me and for months every time I was on that section I was looking into the nooks and crannies and in the shadows. other than that in living out here for 30 plus years it's never been a problem as you describe.

    Much more likely to encounter one when walking of trail to take a piss. And the likelihood of that is pretty low, although it does exist. just be careful where you put your feet stay away from the underbrush yada yada yada.

    And unlike in many parts of the country, out here you really dont see them during the day, at least in summer. it's too damn hot, even for them.

  8. #8
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    I have never heard of a mt.biker getting bit while on a ride. just sayin'
    RAM speed: UP, UP, and away....!

  9. #9
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    So to answer the snake question: they can be anywhere at any time. Just watch your wheel.

  10. #10
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    If you are prone to falls I would worry about tons of jagged rocks we have in the valley.

  11. #11
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    Re: Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    Quote Originally Posted by metalaficionado View Post
    If you are prone to falls I would worry about tons of jagged rocks we have in the valley.
    Yes, and depending on where he is riding the cholla cactus are a far more menacing presence than the rattlesnake.

    I swear that plant was created by Hades.

  12. #12
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    The thing to worry about if you get bitten by a rattlesnake is that you need to be in a hospital within half an hour for antivenom treatment. After that, bad things start to happen to various body parts.

    I wouldn't worry about falling on one though, chances are you'll see it or even hear it rattle before a fall.

  13. #13
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    In 2 years, riding 2-3 times/week I have seen one. Also, survival rate is around 90% last time I researched it. It is zero concern to me.

  14. #14
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    I've seen a few snakes while riding. The snakes I have seen have been on the side of the trail. One went into attack mode when I almost ran him over. The other crawled away peacefully as I was going slowly uphill and didn't notice him until I'd almost passed him.

  15. #15
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    Re: Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    Quote Originally Posted by SugarHigh View Post
    In 2 years, riding 2-3 times/week I have seen one. Also, survival rate is around 90% last time I researched it. It is zero concern to me.
    Survival rate is pretty high. I think ultimately the real cost comes in medical bills, pain and suffering, and time lost from work.

    I've seen plenty of accounts online of rattlesnake bites costing hundreds of thousands of dollars to the victim. the anti venom is very expensive and many doses are often needed, plus all the associated expenses that go with it.

  16. #16
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    Riding the desert trails, I've had many close encounters with rattle snakes. The thing I've learned, is that they don't want any attention... or part of us! The thing that worries me more then rattle snakes...are bee's! We have Al-Qaeda bee's, they're radicalized and aggressive and if they swarm...you'll be looking for a rattle snake to grab and swing to use as a swat to fend off the the bee's! Actually don't worry about the small stuff, the Sun will kill you faster then anything crawling or flying!

    I love the Desert!

  17. #17
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    I have been there enough to know about the weather for sure and it's not like I just fall off my bike randomly. I really didn't know where you are more likely to run into one. I was thinking probably in a more technical area of the trail but I guess that was incorrect. We have lots of snakes here in NY. Mostly garden snakes a couple feet long and lots of black snakes up to five feet long around any water areas. The consequence of a personal meeting is much less dangerous.

  18. #18
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    Think of a billion degrees as not -billion degrees and hot enough to cook a roast as not so cold that your balls will freeze to the ground if you sit. There are worse things than snakes in the world.
    Nice KOM, sorry about your penis.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcappy View Post
    We have lots of snakes here in NY. The consequence of a personal meeting is much less dangerous.
    usually they just want to shake your hand and thank you for your vote, but on occasion they have been known to suddenly kiss infants

  20. #20
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    OK, so are you guy's telling me you never fall, or just not on snakes?

  21. #21
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    if you fall onto a snake,,, you might get tagged 1 in 10,000 times
    if you fall onto the rocks,,, you'll likely be bloodied 1 in 2 times
    if you fall onto a cactus,,, your whole day just went to shit

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by longhairmike View Post
    if you fall onto a snake,,, you might get tagged 1 in 10,000 times
    if you fall onto the rocks,,, you'll likely be bloodied 1 in 2 times
    if you fall onto a cactus,,, your whole day just went to shit


    Nothing like some solid data to put it into perspective.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn-Rider View Post
    The thing to worry about if you get bitten by a rattlesnake is that you need to be in a hospital within half an hour for antivenom treatment. After that, bad things start to happen to various body parts.
    That's unfortunate that anywhere on a trail you are likely 30+ minutes from your vehicle. Then another 30 minutes from a hospital...

    The best advice has always been to keep your heart rate down. How the hell are you gonna do that when you gotta ride or hike off the mountain?

    Quote Originally Posted by gcappy View Post
    OK, so are you guy's telling me you never fall, or just not on snakes?
    Never fallen on a snake...


    from Michael Stevens on Vimeo.


  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by longhairmike View Post
    if you fall onto a snake,,, you might get tagged 1 in 10,000 times
    if you fall onto the rocks,,, you'll likely be bloodied 1 in 2 times
    if you fall onto a cactus,,, your whole day just went to shit
    LOL 1/10,000 times, i think you might be being a bit conservative there, if you fall on a venomous snake i recon youd have pretty high odds of it tagging you, last thing you want to do is fall on a snake.
    Id rather take my chances with rocks and cactus any day lol.
    Dont ever let the truth get in the way of a funny story....

  25. #25
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    I'll provide a bit of persepective... Hopefully I am not off-base...

    So if we assume the worst case scenario like this past spring/summer where I have seen the most activity of rattlers in my life... I pass by a snake either on or close enough to the trail about once in 100 miles. It is probably more (than 100 miles) but lets take the worst case scenario.. So asssume a rider is at risk once in 100 miles of riding...

    100 miles = 52,800 feet.

    And lets say if you fall, being within 3 feet (6 feet diameter) of the snake is a risk.

    So the probability that given you fall, is 6/52800=1/8800 that you are at risk of a snake bite.

    So on average, once every 8800 times you fall off a bike (during the most active time ever known to me), you are at risk of a snake bite.

    Why are we even talking about this....

  26. #26
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    Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    If we take that 1/8800 probability and multiply by the average number of snakes per acre (5) and divide by the number of square feet in one acre (43560), we get a 1/76665600 chance of actually falling on one and getting bit.

    Don't be that 1 in 76664600, rise above, and flow like a six pack on Prom night!


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  27. #27
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    hope this is not too offensive
    Last edited by RajunCajun44; 07-16-2013 at 01:33 AM.

  28. #28
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    Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    The chances of falling on a rattler is very slim. Rattlerhaboob, not that's another story.
    Nobody gives a s#$t you singlespeed.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Casual Observer View Post
    The chances of falling on a rattler is very slim. Rattlerhaboob, not that's another story.
    You don't fall on Rattlerhaboob. Rattlerhaboob falls on you.
    "I've upped my standards. Now, up yours." - P. Paulsen

  30. #30
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    Nearly happened to me out at Gold Canyon on Lost Goldmine a month ago...minus the falling part. The 3 foot diamondback was hanging out right by a group of rocks on the side of the trail. If you look closely you can see a tire track on the right which stops abruptly. No idea why the trails out there have names like Diamondback, Mohave, Gilamonster...Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?-gc-db.jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  31. #31
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    I rode over a rattlesnake sprawled out across National once. Luckily I was haulin down and didn't actually see him til I was on him. Scared the crap out of me. I HATE snakes!

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZ_Wook View Post
    Nearly happened to me out at Gold Canyon on Lost Goldmine a month ago...minus the falling part. The 3 foot diamondback was hanging out right by a group of rocks on the side of the trail. If you look closely you can see a tire track on the right which stops abruptly. No idea why the trails out there have names like Diamondback, Mohave, Gilamonster...Click image for larger version. 

Name:	GC DB.jpg 
Views:	429 
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ID:	816378
    That summabich isn't just relaxing. He's waiting to ambush something. He's not even looking at you. He's focusing on his strike zone.

  33. #33
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    Ok..just to play the devil's advocate, and to freak out the OP...

    Fell on a Rattlesnake..

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by big0mike View Post

    Never fallen on a snake...
    I lurk here for your vids, Mike. Cheers.

    Also, I ran one over accidentally when I was visiting family in Tucson. Didnt have any option as I was coming down hill fast and didnt have time to stop/swerve. It seemed to have survived and just slithered off. I saw about 4 rattlers last fall in NM where I normally ride and not a single one rattled me which is sorta scary.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by eatdrinkride View Post
    Ok..just to play the devil's advocate, and to freak out the OP...

    Fell on a Rattlesnake..
    Thanks for sharing this link... What's most incredible is that this video was taken ( I assume) in February... Maybe a bad assumption ??

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn-Rider View Post
    The thing to worry about if you get bitten by a rattlesnake is that you need to be in a hospital within half an hour for antivenom treatment. After that, bad things start to happen to various body parts.

    I wouldn't worry about falling on one though, chances are you'll see it or even hear it rattle before a fall.
    I was wondering where you came across your information?
    I have fairly extensive first hand data that suggests this is far from the truth.

  37. #37
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    I was riding on BCT on Sunday and ran over one heading down the Boyscout loop. I just came on him at speed and by the time I saw him all coiled up it was about a second before my front wheel when right over him. I just kept on riding and never looked back.
    Joe
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cenobite39 View Post
    I was wondering where you came across your information?
    I have fairly extensive first hand data that suggests this is far from the truth.
    While seeking info on the web, I picked up that neurotoxins begin digesting nerves after 30 minutes of a snakebite. Look up the effects of getting bitten by a green mohave snake.

    I had to stick with that info since extensive data like yours didn't show up.

  39. #39
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    the rattlesnake venom is hemotoxic and causes massive tissue damage, so yes you want to get to the hospital ASAP... you may get lucky and get dry bite only.... or unlucky and end up fasciotomy and skin grafts

    Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?-picture1big.jpg

  40. #40
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    Re: Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    Reading this thread I'm glad I live in the upper Midwest. I love snakes but last thing I want to worry about is a big ass rattler etc thinking he's more bad ass than me.

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  41. #41
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    -- Sarcasim ON --
    Anyone have any tire recommendations for riding out here? I need something that is light, cheap and will resist repeated strikes from the hundreds of thousands of rattlesnakes I encounter on the trail. I am considering replacing my 29er hardtail with a 32 inch full suspension rig to keep me higher off the ground to make it harder for the snakes to bite me, and full suspension to help smooth out the ride from riding over all them snakes!
    -- Sarcasim OFF --


    But seriously the post above gave me a good laugh. I ride about 2-3 times a week (during the day and at night) and have only seen 1 snake in the last two years, and I was in no way anywhere close to being struck by it. I would much rather be in AZ than in the Midwest (Humidity/Snow). I LOVE being able to ride year round, and if I occasionally get to see some wild life, then that is just an added bonus.

  42. #42
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    This just keeps gettin better and better! So far only one guy in AZ ever fell on a snake.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn-Rider View Post
    While seeking info on the web, I picked up that neurotoxins begin digesting nerves after 30 minutes of a snakebite. Look up the effects of getting bitten by a green mohave snake.

    I had to stick with that info since extensive data like yours didn't show up.
    My apologies. The certainty of your post made it sound like you were someone who was knowledgeable on the subject and not just someone who did a quick Google search and then posted trying to make it sound like you were someone who knew what he was talking about. To avoid the same mistake being made about me, I will refrain from doing a Google search before responding.
    Many field herpetologists are envenomated out in the field at least once in their life. When this happens, they are seldom anywhere near medical attention and even further away from anti-venon. I had a two hour drive to TMC after my envenomation and it was probably 3 hours after the bite before I started receiving the first 4 vials of AV. Mine was a bad bite and required 26 vials and 6 days in ICU and I have no scaring or nerve damage. I can tell you of 6 other friends (and countless other who I know but do not call friend) who have been bitten by rattlesnakes and all but one of them happened out in the field. None of them were dry bites and none of them resulted in substantial tissue or nerve damage. None of them had a fasciotomy as this procedure is very rarely done anymore as it has been found to do more harm than good. They sent a surgeon in talk to me about it and I refused it and explained to him why compartment syndrome is often times misdiagnosed in snake bite envenomations.

    If you are bitten by a snake, get to a hospital asap but don’t panic because you think you have to be there in 30 min. Anaphylaxes is the real cause for concern and if you are not routinely around rattlesnake venom, then you are at low risk for anaphylactic shock on your first bite. Hemotoxic venom as found in rattlesnakes does break down tissue but it is not nearly as dangerous as neurotoxic venom which is only found in small areas of C. scutulatus (Mojave Rattlesnake) that are located in SE AZ, C. abyssus (Grand Canyon Rattlesnake) and C viridis (Prairie Rattlesnake) as found on the south rim of the Grand Canyon. Higher elevation animals such as C. Lepidus (Banded Rock Rattlesnake) and C. willardi (Ridge-nosed rattlesnake) also have neurotixic properties to their venom makeup.

    By saying “Green Mohave” I assume you are talking about the Mojave Rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus) I don’t need to Google it as I have seen it first hand. I drove a friend and hour and a half to the hospital after his bite (two and a half hours to AV) and he has no lasting side effects from the bite. Most of the general public can not identify Crotalus scutulatus from Crotalus atrox (Western Diamondback) as most Mojave are not green in color and look very similar to the a Western Diamondback. Most “Green Mohave” that are reported are misidentified Crotalus molossus (Blacktailed Rattlesnake) which are almost always green in color.

  44. #44
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    Polyvalent antivenin is most efficacious if given within 4 to 6 hours of the bite.
    It is of less value if delayed for 8 hours, and is of questionable value after 24 hours.
    This is direct quote from the syllabus by:
    Timothy B. Erickson, MD, FACEP, FACMT, FAACT
    Professor of Emergency Medicine & Toxicology: University of Illinois @ Chicago

    I attended his lecture on Snake Envenomations, guy is an amazing lecturer too.

    google him.

  45. #45
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    Any one Ever Fall On A Rattlesnake While Ridding?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cenobite39 View Post
    My apologies. The certainty of your post made it sound like you were someone who was knowledgeable on the subject and not just someone who did a quick Google search and then posted trying to make it sound like you were someone who knew what he was talking about. To avoid the same mistake being made about me, I will refrain from doing a Google search before responding.
    Many field herpetologists are envenomated out in the field at least once in their life. When this happens, they are seldom anywhere near medical attention and even further away from anti-venon. I had a two hour drive to TMC after my envenomation and it was probably 3 hours after the bite before I started receiving the first 4 vials of AV. Mine was a bad bite and required 26 vials and 6 days in ICU and I have no scaring or nerve damage. I can tell you of 6 other friends (and countless other who I know but do not call friend) who have been bitten by rattlesnakes and all but one of them happened out in the field. None of them were dry bites and none of them resulted in substantial tissue or nerve damage. None of them had a fasciotomy as this procedure is very rarely done anymore as it has been found to do more harm than good. They sent a surgeon in talk to me about it and I refused it and explained to him why compartment syndrome is often times misdiagnosed in snake bite envenomations.

    If you are bitten by a snake, get to a hospital asap but don’t panic because you think you have to be there in 30 min. Anaphylaxes is the real cause for concern and if you are not routinely around rattlesnake venom, then you are at low risk for anaphylactic shock on your first bite. Hemotoxic venom as found in rattlesnakes does break down tissue but it is not nearly as dangerous as neurotoxic venom which is only found in small areas of C. scutulatus (Mojave Rattlesnake) that are located in SE AZ, C. abyssus (Grand Canyon Rattlesnake) and C viridis (Prairie Rattlesnake) as found on the south rim of the Grand Canyon. Higher elevation animals such as C. Lepidus (Banded Rock Rattlesnake) and C. willardi (Ridge-nosed rattlesnake) also have neurotixic properties to their venom makeup.

    By saying “Green Mohave” I assume you are talking about the Mojave Rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus) I don’t need to Google it as I have seen it first hand. I drove a friend and hour and a half to the hospital after his bite (two and a half hours to AV) and he has no lasting side effects from the bite. Most of the general public can not identify Crotalus scutulatus from Crotalus atrox (Western Diamondback) as most Mojave are not green in color and look very similar to the a Western Diamondback. Most “Green Mohave” that are reported are misidentified Crotalus molossus (Blacktailed Rattlesnake) which are almost always green in color.
    Dang, very informative thank you for that. Snakes give me the willies, but honestly every time I've come across one on the trails it's been a pretty cool experience so far. Love seeing em, as long as its from a respectable distance!

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cenobite39 View Post
    By saying “Green Mohave” I assume you are talking about the Mojave Rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus) I don’t need to Google it as I have seen it first hand. I drove a friend and hour and a half to the hospital after his bite (two and a half hours to AV) and he has no lasting side effects from the bite. Most of the general public can not identify Crotalus scutulatus from Crotalus atrox (Western Diamondback) as most Mojave are not green in color and look very similar to the a Western Diamondback. Most “Green Mohave” that are reported are misidentified Crotalus molossus (Blacktailed Rattlesnake) which are almost always green in color.
    dont forget the dangerous sCrotalus teabaggus which most often appears at college parties. the effects will linger on the internet long after the initial attack.

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cenobite39 View Post
    My apologies. ...
    Man, if you only LOOKED as smart as you sound! I hope you are around if I ever get tagged...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeeter97 View Post
    Dang, very informative thank you for that.
    +1, reading about first hand experiences like yours and your buddies' is one of the reasons I keep reading mtbr.

  49. #49
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    All this from one question! Well, now I really don't want to fall on a rattler!!!

  50. #50
    Meatbomb
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    I fell because of a rattler but not on it. Came around a corner on Quartz and it was in the middle of trail. I panicked and stabbed the brakes causing my front tire to wash out.

    Humbling experience lying there about 5 feet away from him at his level. I got up, dusted off and gave him a lot of space as I continued on.

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