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  1. #26
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    The only times I get scared is when I have a mechanical and have to stop to work on the bike in the dark. You don't realize how much of the scary "critter chatter" is drowned out by the sound of your moving wheels.......

  2. #27
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    I get a little freaked out when my light catches eyes that appear to be looking at me. Two big eyes surrounded by darkness make me pedal faster!

  3. #28
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    A buddy and I were recentley riding a trail we've done numerous night runs on. For one reason or the other we stopped to B.S. and started shining our light across this canyon just to see what we could and immediately spotted a pair of eyes. It just kept pacing back and forth on this rather large, steep rockface. Once we got all of our lights shining directly on it we were really surprised to see it was a mountain lion. Unfortunetly we had to ride no more than 15 yards from the rockface to continue our ride. After much debate (and we both carry small firearms) we didn't take the risk. I still wish I hadn't stopped and started shining my light around, it has really messed with my head. We haven't done that particular night ride since.
    "Ride it Like You Stole it"!

  4. #29
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    I used to solo lobster dive at night a lot so I've learned to turn off that 'what if' the part of my brain but... been solo night riding for 10 years now and twice I stopped for a year or 2 after running into homeless people just standing in the middle of the trail with no lights miles from anywhere. Really f'n spooks the S out of me.

  5. #30
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    I was all pumped to start riding at night, but now you guys making it sound a little creepy! I was planning on riding at night with music, never used music while riding before. Hopefully it can keep me pumped up and I can forget about all the stuff hiding in the dark!

  6. #31
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    Location - SoCal, Santa Monica mountains, Point Mugo state park
    time - Dusk

    Just started up a trail and turned into a switch back when I almost ran over a curled up, sleeping bobcat. The squeak of my brakes as I came to a stop woke it up. I was literally only inches away from it. It sprinted up the trail about 40 feet, stopped and stood sideways looking back at me. It was beautiful. Very muscular and good size. I have an 80 lb dog and this cat was bigger. This was not your household kitty cat. I mean it looked very healthy and strong. Couldn't tell if it was pissed off but It was freaky how it was just standing there staring at me. I've seen plenty of bobcats on the trail and usually they dart off. This one seemed to have an interest in me. This trail section had a steep drop off to my left and the right side was a sheer rocky wall about 9 feet high. The trail itself was about 3 feet wide. there was no going around it. The cat simply wasn't moving. We sat there studying each other for about 2 minutes. Finally, I decided I wasn't going back down. I really wanted to get on with my ride so I clipped in an started pedalling. The cat crouched down and leaped up the rocky face in a blink and was gone. A very impressive jump. Kept on with my ride but that cat was never to far from my thoughts. By the way I was riding solo as I do 99% of the time. I never get bothered by the night. I actually enjoy the experience of being out in the mountains, 9 miles from the car, with only the sounds of your bike on the dirt.

  7. #32
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    Stumbled onto the this thread and thought I would share my cautionary tale.

    I always enjoyed night riding... Then last year while riding along the local paved trail at night and rounding a corner I happened upon an alligator. The gator was lying parallel to the asphalt right along the edge. Due to excessive speed and not so great light setup I did not see it until the last second. I did not have time to brake so I tried to swerve and hope that I could sail past it. Well that hope was dashed because it decided to take a snap at me. Whether out of surprise/fear (do alligators feel fear?) or hunger we will never know... It snapped at me and bit down on my water bottle cage area and my right foot/pedal. Not using clipless pedals on that ride may have saved my life. Because the gator bit down on parts of my bike it could not close its mouth completely on my foot so only my ankle got gnashed a bit. My foot was jerked loose when I went over the bars. After I got up I was able to get my extra light out and shine it on the gator who was done with my bike by that point and coming towards me looking very pissed off. The light in its eyes caused it to stop approaching. Due to the concussion I don't remember very clearly after that point but I do know I wandered out to the highway and down a mile or so and knocked on someones door who called an ambulance. I did not think to use my cell phone which I always carry, nor even remember that I had it.

    All told I suffered a concussion, facial lacerations (45 stitches), broken teeth, and a gator bite on my ankle. I had to take a bunch of antibiotics to protect against infection from that. My bike fared better than I did suffering only slight damage. The FWC called in a local trapper to round up the alligator which hadn't wandered very far. He was just over ten feet in length. I still ride at night but now I am a bit more cautious. I also use a better light system and refuse to go anywhere unless it is fully charged.
    Last edited by sporgo; 12-13-2011 at 08:48 AM.

  8. #33
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    Thats freaky ****
    Life loses its meaning when we get stuck up in our comfort zone.
    -M.K. Soni


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  9. #34
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    I ride the desert around north Phoenix. Wildlife-wise, the main thing to fear would have to be javelinas and rattlesnakes. Often see coyotes, fox, and jackrabbits in the dark, but these are more cool than scary. At the start of some rides, the thought of cougars does cross my mind, but they are very scarce. Scorpians could also be a big killjoy, but while riding they are no issue. I see more of them in my backyard than in the desert.

    Besides animals, falling off the mountain is a slightly larger concern in the dark, but I make sure I am very confident on the trails I night ride on.

  10. #35
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    Once when I ran into a bear cub, literally hit the thing and I went OTB. I just barrel rolled and ran, never looked back.
    "...like sex with the trail." - Boe

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by wookie View Post
    Ever Get Scared Night Riding?
    Isn't that the point?

  12. #37
    sbd
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    Those are some crazy stories!!

  13. #38
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    I've had two buddies get attacked by owls in the last month or so. Nothing crazy, just an owl swooping down and hitting their helmet, one guy got pelted in the chest by an owl lol. We kinda named the owl "The Hawk of Achill" after the jameson commercial.

    Also, one of the local riders got scared when he heard my group night riding. We had a few guys barking like dogs and another person screaming bloody murder lol. Guy ended up sitting next to his truck to get a glimpse of what was going on and then saw our lights.
    2013 Ibis Mojo HD Special Blend with dropper post, hope/stans wheelset and hope x2/m4 brakes

  14. #39
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    Awesome stories ('cept the ones that end in injuries... but glad you shared them).

    I about dropped a pant load just this evening. I was riding up a steep section of trail in Bent Creek Forest (Asheville). Steep enough that your heart rate is pretty much near max by the time you get to the top and it finally levels out. Just as I was getting near the top I heard something move in the leaves just next to and behind me. It sounded very close and very large. My legs were already burning from the effort, and my heartrate went from near max to hyper-max instantly and then even higher as I stomped on the pedals to get over the top and the hell away from whatever it was.

    A few seconds later the rustling sound stopped and so did I, done in from the effort and the scare. When I looked back I saw what caused it.

    I had snagged a small branch with my rear wheel and dragged it through the leaves.

    I don't know if I felt more relieved or stupid, but it took a long time for my heartrate to come back down enough so that I could start riding again!
    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go."
    T.S. Eliot

  15. #40
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    Lol these stories are awesome! I can't wait to start night riding real mtb trails.
    "Single track is for pansies!
    I blast down a mountain once, and in my wake, lies a new single track for the rest of you."-sm

  16. #41
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    I was riding through a local woods, right out in the sticks, pitch black. Thought I saw something move to my right, then heard a weird nose. Then I felt someone pat me on the back like a double pat. The next 10 minutes I climbed throught that forest like I had never climbed before. I think it was just my mind working over time and a branch or something must of caught me. Been back a few times and still a bit spooky each time I go.

  17. #42
    You got any chocolate?
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    My biggest fear is running into some dude who has taken some of those slasher movies to heart. Does anyone really need to run into a "wannabe Jason, hockey mask and all" during a ride? Not me!! But the fear of the unknown is part of the fun of night riding.
    Tom G.
    Long Island, NY

  18. #43
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    Most cyclists who ride at night are scared of getting hit by a car. Since I live north of Chicago my biggest fear is getting hit by a stray bullet! I've never had a problem with four-legged animals, but I do carry a can of pepper spray for the two-legged varmints.

  19. #44
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    I just started nite riding and i usually ride alone.My luck i'll be the first biker to be mauled by a Bigfoot.Are there any Bigfoots in Sugar Land Tx?

  20. #45
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    I've had my share of creepy night rides, but i guess the scariest was being chased by two german Shepherds that were kept out at night guarding a farm. Catching glimpses of big white teeth on either side of your bike can give you some real motivation to ride faster. One of them was so close to my leg that I could just about feel his warm breath on me. Another time I found a drunk guy stumbling around out on the trail. He ran away at first bc he thought i was a UFO coming for him. I ended up showing him the way out of the woods.

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratt View Post
    I used to solo lobster dive at night
    I tried to be a commercial diver once... schooled in Wilmington, CA. Walking around on the bottom and bumping into stuff is probably the freakiest thing I've ever done

    Quote Originally Posted by Snake Muesl View Post
    Isn't that the point?
    HAHAHA oh yeah.... that's also the reason I'm never getting more than 700 lumens of light... okay, maybe 900... I don't want daylight out there... I want to run just a bit scared

    Quote Originally Posted by dobovedo View Post
    I about dropped a pant load just this evening. I was riding up a steep section of trail in Bent Creek Forest (Asheville). Steep enough that your heart rate is pretty much near max by the time you get to the top and it finally levels out. Just as I was getting near the top I heard something move in the leaves just next to and behind me. It sounded very close and very large. My legs were already burning from the effort, and my heartrate went from near max to hyper-max instantly and then even higher as I stomped on the pedals to get over the top and the hell away from whatever it was.

    A few seconds later the rustling sound stopped and so did I, done in from the effort and the scare. When I looked back I saw what caused it.

    I had snagged a small branch with my rear wheel and dragged it through the leaves.

    I don't know if I felt more relieved or stupid, but it took a long time for my heartrate to come back down enough so that I could start riding again!
    One of my favorites... only because this has happened to me before also

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernal View Post
    I just started nite riding and i usually ride alone.My luck i'll be the first biker to be mauled by a Bigfoot.Are there any Bigfoots in Sugar Land Tx?
    Naw.... just these folks...


    Here in Humboldt County, we have a few great trails for night riding North of Arcata, in Arcata, Eureka, Fortuna, and South.
    Most of the 'eyes' I see at night I can identify as deer... but sometimes... not too sure

    Still, I wouldn't trade night riding for sitting at home watching scary movies!
    I likes my thrills the way I gets them now...

    One of the best parts is having most trails pretty much all to yourself.

  22. #47
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    Good stuff.

    Encounters with wildlife are usually just glimpses of beady eyes.

    One time I rustled up a porcupine who ambled down the trail in front of me. I was more scared for my buddies coming down behind me.

    A classic night ride around here, Ape Canyon/Plains of Abraham on Mt St Helens has the curious appearance of frogs on the trail during certain times of the year. I guess it would be scary for the frogs.

    One time on a family campout, I was heading out at dusk for a quick solo night ride. A coupIe miles up the trail I caught some movement in my peripheral. I glanced over expecting to see a deer or maybe an elk. I didn't really get a very good look at the bear. Mostly I saw a big shaggy brown patch racing up the hill away from me. The impressive thing was instead of dodging the thick brush, the bear made a straight line through the brush snapping branches and leaving a wake of dust.

    Since most animals in the wild are cautious and timid around humans, I'm generally not too frightened. I was relieved this bear took off when it saw/heard/smelled me, but it took off in the direction I was headed. I spent the rest of the ride shouting out occasionally, "HEY BEAR! MAN COMIN'"

    Never saw it again.

  23. #48
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    Lovin' this thread...

    This one is especially



    Quote Originally Posted by Hutch3637 View Post
    Actually, the other day. I live about two miles give or take to my trail head. On route I ride through some bad area's (thugs and what not) and through a park. Well, on my way through the park i'm just going along and I look up and there's some huge dude standing in the middle of the dirt path no lights nothing, mind you it's around 3-3:30AM. I carefully passed the guy and was like Hi... So as I leave the path and head over across the road to the trail head I notice there is a 18 wheeler parked in the dirt/gravel parking lot so it could have been him. So I head off into the trail. The guy why was he there was in my mind but that didn't get me. As I'm doing my usual loop I come to a top of a climb and take a break for a second to sip water. Next thing I hear is some stigs and leaves crunching on the down side the trail. I shine my lights over there and guess what? It's that dude! Mind you i'm about 2-3 miles in the middle of the woods with windy single track. I'm like wtf. Needless to say hauled ass back the way I came down the climb. Luckly there's a brigde crossing which takes you out to a road down the path so I made it there in record time and as i'm riding home I just keep thinking what did this guy want or who was he?

  24. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bernal View Post
    I just started nite riding and i usually ride alone.My luck i'll be the first biker to be mauled by a Bigfoot.Are there any Bigfoots in Sugar Land Tx?
    What trails are out in sugar land? Do you commute to anthills?
    2013 Ibis Mojo HD Special Blend with dropper post, hope/stans wheelset and hope x2/m4 brakes

  25. #50
    hec
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    Sometimes it can be just your state of mind.
    Your in an easily spooked mood and logic just dissapears, examples:

    Dont night ride much, but bought some lights direct from china and was trying them out on a wooded trail no more than 2 miles from the town where i live.
    I KNOW that there's absolutely nothing out there that could possibly be a threat. But my lights caught 5 pairs of devilishy red eyes peering, then darting about in front of me.
    I stopped nearly turned round and fled, but got real and pressed on... It was a guy out walking in camoflage gear with 5 black labradors!

    Years ago when i was a young apprentice in the mines, i was drafted in to help a guy from the Coal Board to do a ventilation survey.
    This involved traipsing around in the old workings, dragging a couple of 100 metres of hose around while he measured the pressure difference at the other end.
    We were at least 5 miles away from the nearest workers and these places would not have been travelled since the 1940's apart from safety checks.
    So you might say? well this was 1978, the beginning of a new era of horror/sci-fi/ slasher movies.
    The film i'd been to see the previous night...The original Alien.
    That survey lasted a full week and i was creeped out for every single minute of it.
    Last edited by hec; 12-22-2011 at 02:33 PM.

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