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  1. #1
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    I fought the sun, and the sun won

    Went out for a ride this afternoon and thought I'd have plenty of time to finish a quick 7 mile ride before the sun set. Unfortunately I was wrong and with no light available and no sign of the moon, I thought it was going to turn into an interesting final stretch considering the trails are a bit wooded and rocky. Luckily I ride these trails 5-6 times a week so I have them pretty well figured out.

    I have to say, what started out as feeling kind of sketchy turned into one of the coolest rides I've ever experienced. The trail itself looked like a slightly darker line in a sea of black and while I couldn't see anything, I was able to focus on the fact that I could feel every single little movement of the bike and how it reacted to the unseen obstacles. The barely visible tall grass lining the path let me know if I was drifting too far from one side or the other, and off to my side I could hear a small herd of deer running through the woods as I approached.

    When I finally reached the trail head and pulled up to my car, I had a huge smile on my face and felt like I got to know my bike a little better and my mind was free from the daily stresses. It has definitely inspired me to carry some lighting with me and go for a solid night ride in the future.
    Maybe it's a bit of a corny story to some but I just thought I'd share my ride for today. It's one I really enjoyed when I was expecting just another quick run that had nothing special occur.

  2. #2
    A God Without A Name
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    Being that this is MTBR, I hope I am able to finish typing my reply before this thread devolves into an argument about headlamps, so here goes!

    I get where you're coming from, being able to enjoy this honest mistake. be it forgetting a light or just plain getting lost, some of the most exciting experiences can come from that sense of the unknown. And as unrelated as it may seem, it's also part of what I miss about living in the big city. Once and a while you need to just ride to get lost, even in your own backyard. not knowing whether you're going to make it home or suck it up and call for help.

    Also, I've completely spaced my lights the last two nights, and it's made my teeny commute home down right harrowing.

  3. #3
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    know the feeling. first 24hr race I entered way back when I had the cheapest lights on the bike. hallfway round the course they gave up the ghost for the most part and ended up riding along with the light equivelant of a glow worm. besides managing to get wedged between two trees mistiming a corner it was actually kinda cool.

  4. #4
    CrgCrkRyder
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    Riding by Braille makes for an interesting experience. I have found myself in the same situation a few times and now always try to keep a light with me, especially with the short days.

  5. #5
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    I fought the sun, and the sun won

    Riding trails at night is a hidden jewel in the MTB hobby. I use cheap Chinese clones of Chinese lights so the cost is minimal. I do carry a USB rechargeable backup to get me off the trail in case of a failure. Also, where I live, I would not be able to ride much of the year if I could not ride at night.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  6. #6
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    Try riding in full moon light with snow and no lights, way cool.

  7. #7
    Kick Start My Heart
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    Getting caught w/o lights is an experience to appreciate. Like you said, sound becomes pronounced, bike feel is heightened, and vision becomes just a clue. It opens your senses up a bit for sure.
    Kinda neat!

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk

  8. #8
    Oh, I've GOT bike money
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    I've been caught on the trail at night without lights. The hardest part is not being able to "read" the trail. A loose rock in the wrong spot can put you down, so I found myself out of the saddle most of the time, prepared for the unexpected.

  9. #9
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    One time I bungy strapped a little flashlight to my handlebars to make it back to my vehicle. I am typing this so I lived.
    cool pics
    Keep The Rubber Side Down

  10. #10
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    Ya I was off the seat most of the time. There's a fun downhill run towards the end of the ride and for the first half I was dragging brakes. The second half, I just let the brakes go. That was kind of scary but fun. I used to do a lot of kayaking and canoeing and some of my favorite trips were night paddles but I definitely prefer biking.
    Any good advice on best bang for the buck lights? I know there's a review posted on the homepage too. Haven't checked it out yet though.

  11. #11
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    I fought the sun, and the sun won

    I use magicshine clones with wide angle lenses from action led. $35 each shipped + a few bucks for the lens.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  12. #12
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    A skill you didn't know you had; great!

    Going about at night with only available light can be quite satisfying.

    Many years ago, a cousin and I were in a small cave, in the forest, at night, some spots were quite narrow. When we were down as far as we could go, I suggested we try going back out without the aide of a light. He had been in many times before, my first; bumped my head a couple of times, but made it out without resorting to the use of a light.
    "Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway" John Wayne

  13. #13
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    Thanks for sharing that

    I ran into a Copperhead as I was running out of daylight, it actually bit my front tire while pushing my bike.

    I'm now a dedicated night rider. I use " lights & motion 700 urban " .

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