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  1. #1
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    Is this Poison Oak? (photo)

    I didn't wear leg warmers and ventured into thick overgrown trails today(Baldwin Trail at Wilder Ranch). Big mistake.

    My legs were brushed one big time by this thing and very shortly I got some rashes. I took a photo of it. The stem is very thorny. I thought it was poison oak. Please tell me it's not.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Is this Poison Oak? (photo)-img_2093.jpg  


  2. #2
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    Is this Poison Oak? (photo)

    Quote Originally Posted by lidation View Post
    I didn't wear leg warmers and ventured into thick overgrown trails today(Baldwin Trail at Wilder Ranch). Big mistake.

    My legs were brushed one big time by this thing and very shortly I got some rashes. I took a photo of it. The stem is very thorny. I thought it was poison oak. Please tell me it's not.
    PO does not have thorns.
    That looks like blackberries.
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  3. #3
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    Nope. This is however. Vile weed...
    Is this Poison Oak? (photo)-poison-oak.jpg

  4. #4
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    Blackberries.

  5. #5
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    No. It's very close but the edges of the leaves should be smooth.

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  6. #6
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    Poison oak and blackberries often grow together in some places on the central coast. Wilder and Big Sur are two places that come to mind.

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    Is this Poison Oak? (photo)

    Quote Originally Posted by grumblingcrustacean View Post
    Poison oak and blackberries often grow together in some places on the central coast. Wilder and Big Sur are two places that come to mind.
    I western Oregon blackberries are EVERYWHERE, sometimes there is also PO.
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  8. #8
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    The second picture looks more like poison ivy, which is found on the East Coast. The oak that I see around here looks more like this: Poison Oak, with lobed leaves. Squashyo is the local expert on the subject...
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  9. #9
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    When I was a kid, I thought it was called "Poisonoak"

  10. #10
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    Could be a pioson oak-blackberry hybride. Common on the gulf coast. Eating the berries will build up your immunity.
    The guy yo' momma "act" like she don't know!

  11. #11
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    Leaves of 3, let them be. Often shiny or waxy looking, they turn reddish later in the summer. If they have jaggy edges, thorns or hairs NOT P.O.

  12. #12
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    If you ever have trouble identifying poison oak the best advice for identifying is to strip naked and roll around it. If a slight tingling/itching sensation emerges, than that is poison oak!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan G. View Post
    If you ever have trouble identifying poison oak the best advice for identifying is to strip naked and roll around it. If a slight tingling/itching sensation emerges, than that is poison oak!
    Holy ****! That is absolutely horrible advise. Shame on you Ryan G! Rolling naked in what might be poison oak won't administer very quick results. What you want to do is target sensitive areas of your body like ball sack or anal cavity. Wrap or insert suspecting leaves to these areas for a day. After a day, take the now semi dried leaves and smoke them in pipe (not a bong) or spliff. This will give you a much quicker analysis and you'll then know what to avoid on future tromps through the forest. You're welcome.
    Peanut butter Tuesday, if you know what I mean!

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    Quote Originally Posted by squashyo View Post
    Holy ****! That is absolutely horrible advise. Shame on you Ryan G! Rolling naked in what might be poison oak won't administer very quick results. What you want to do is target sensitive areas of your body like ball sack or anal cavity. Wrap or insert suspecting leaves to these areas for a day. After a day, take the now semi dried leaves and smoke them in pipe (not a bong) or spliff. This will give you a much quicker analysis and you'll then know what to avoid on future tromps through the forest. You're welcome.
    Jesus... that brings back horrible memories. Growing up in Colorado, I had no clue about poison oak until I moved to Sonoma County when I was in my early 20's. Pulled into my mom's new place on Sonoma Mountain, let my dog out or the truck to stretch her legs -which she did in the middle of a huge patch of oak- gave her a pat and back scratch, and promptly went to take a piss after hours on the road. I spent the next week -as the itch, redness, swelling, and blisters spread throughout my crotch- wondering if I'd hooked up with some random chick before I left Colorado and couldn't remember it before finally going to the doc thinking I had an incurable disease. Learning it was just poison oak was only partial relief from the weeks of agony I endured. Horrible experience! At least I didn't smoke it...

  15. #15
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    I know a friend of mine who in a drunken stupor threw a s-load of it on a campfire while partying with a huge group of people. Not good.

    This time of year there is no mistaking it by the way. The stuff is literally shimmering from all the oil. Stuff is all over my neighborhood.

  16. #16
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    Boom! I'm Captain Obvious chiming in here (no duh).. If you don't know what Poison Oak looks like, please refer to the unwritten mountain bikers handbook pg. 1 chapter 1. line 1. about riding dirt in CA and the dangers of Poison Oak. If you are having trouble finding this section in the handbook, it's the part right before the jumps, burms, beers, *****in bike and all the glory of riding bikes in the dirt.

    And that, is a tip from your old buddy Twowheelmotion, trail boss.. (I was watching reruns of Rawhide Saturday)

  17. #17
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    This is native blackberry Rubus ursinus (sometimes called California blackberry/dewberry). It has leaves of three as opposed to the Himalayan Blackberry which has 5 leaves and the large sweet-tasting berries (that we all love to eat). But Himalayan is extremely aggressive and almost impossible to get rid of. (It's the primary one you come across in huge patches with big fruit.) You'll know it's not oak if it has thorns which on the native are kind of small/fine (unlike the nasty Himalayan which will rip you off your bike if it gets ahold of you) whereas oak has no thorns.

    Oak loses it's leaves during the winter and is just a blown steam, but it still has oils. (Not as much oil as the leaves, but can still infect you.) So it's a good idea to find oak in summer and know what the stem looks like, so you don't get tagged in the winter.

    And I know people are just joking around about eating and all, but you DO NOT build up immunity to poison oak. Even if you don't get a rash when you're exposed, repeated exposure breaks down your immunity. So best to avoid even if you're not allergic.

  18. #18
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    I was hit with my first bit of PO from sliding out in a corner at Treez-N-Breez (sadly gone). The reaction was on my butt cheek and hip and about the size of a dinner plate. That was a week of a very unhappy desk job. Oh, and I had cleaned up with Tecnu. Just not under my shorts as I thought unwisely that they provided protection.

    I have a gallery of various states of poison oak on my site:

    Poison Oak!!! Argh!!! | Hans Kellner Dot Com
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by hanskellner View Post
    The reaction was on my butt cheek and hip and about the size of a dinner plate. That was a week of a very unhappy desk job. Oh, and I had cleaned up with Tecnu.[/url]
    Next time you decide to do your business in the woods, bring some TP instead of grabbing random leaves

  20. #20
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    Correction

    Quote Originally Posted by simbot View Post
    Leaves of 3, let them be...
    Correction: "Leaflets three, let it be." These are compound leaves with three leaflets, not individual leaves. I'd be hard pressed to come up with a plant that has only three leaves.

  21. #21
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    Poison oak treatment

    Quote Originally Posted by lidation View Post
    I didn't wear leg warmers and ventured into thick overgrown trails today(Baldwin Trail at Wilder Ranch). Big mistake.

    My legs were brushed one big time by this thing and very shortly I got some rashes. I took a photo of it. The stem is very thorny. I thought it was poison oak. Please tell me it's not.
    I used to get poison oak sooo bad until I did some research on treating the rash once you have come in contact with it. I am happy to say that I found a product that works wonders if used correctly. It is called Mean Green, it is actually an automotive hand soap but it will save your bacon if you get poison oak. Wet both hands and the affected area then bring the soap to a lather in your hands before intensely scrubbing it on the affected area for 3 minutes or until all itching dissipates. If for some reason you have any itching afterward do one more application and it will be gone. This has not failed me yet and I used to make a trip to the doctor for shots, pills and cream after contact with the oak.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by squashyo View Post
    Holy ****! That is absolutely horrible advise. Shame on you Ryan G! Rolling naked in what might be poison oak won't administer very quick results. What you want to do is target sensitive areas of your body like ball sack or anal cavity. Wrap or insert suspecting leaves to these areas for a day. After a day, take the now semi dried leaves and smoke them in pipe (not a bong) or spliff. This will give you a much quicker analysis and you'll then know what to avoid on future tromps through the forest. You're welcome.
    I give rep for LOL's, and unfortunately, I have to spread some rep around before giving you any more. Bummer.
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  23. #23
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    I had recent experience with Technu Extreme - it's the more expensive Technu. It works wonders. I went backpacking in the Ventana wilderness last weekend. We were literally wading through giant poison oak fields. I was wearing long pants thank goodness, but had short sleeves for some of it. I washed in this stuff afterward - in cold water (Hot water makes it worse). End result? Not even a slight rash anywhere. Good stuff!
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  24. #24
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    Ditto on the Technu Extreme. Use after you know you've run into PO.

    Eat mangoes as a frequent habit. Their skin contains traces of Urushoil (the evil, shiny oil in poison oak), and apparantly this is a way you can come to tolerate PO a little better. You don't eat the skin (most people don't), but you still get bits of it. I am eating a mango right now, and it is good!

    Buy a dedicated pair of long-handled garden loppers from the hardware store--ones that will fit in your Camelbak/Osprey. Once or twice each ride when you encounter some of what you are pretty sure is Poison Oak, stop and clip it back for 5 minutes. Not authorized in some parks perhaps, and I never suggested it, but working to improve trails by clearing back some invading branches of PO will help you learn to identify it! Be careful where you cut, though, making any cuts far off of the trail where no one will brush into them -- because those clipped branches will be oozing the poison.

    The cutting blades of your loppers will be plague-infested, covered with Urushoil, which stays active for years, so you will need to have a large heavy duty freezer bag / zip loc bag or other heavy duty bag and CAREFULLY insert your lopper ends into that bag, and then tie it up or use a rubber band so you keep the cutting end of those loppers covered at all times. Never take your loppers out of the bag unless you are doing PO-clipping. You cannot afford to be laissez-faire or casual about this. End result if you are careful: you improve the trails, keep other riders from smacking into the evil native plant (karma points for you), and you WILL learn to identify Poison Oak very well, so you will see it instantaneously from 20 feet away, and at speed -- a very handy thing for a mt biker!

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainlover View Post
    I used to get poison oak sooo bad until I did some research on treating the rash once you have come in contact with it. I am happy to say that I found a product that works wonders if used correctly. It is called Mean Green.
    According to some folks on the Internet*, the company that makes Zanfel was started by a guy from the Mean Green company... Same stuff, marked up a few thousand percent. Whether you believe it or not, Zanfel *does* work, and is hideously expensive, so I'd be willing to give the Mean Green a shot as well. I wonder if Fast Orange works as well...

    *Somebody in the Amazon reviews of Zanfel, that is...

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