Bull on the trail - Pass or not?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Bull on the trail - Pass or not?

    Yesterday I came across this guy as I was headed downhill. He was a lot bigger than he looks in the pic. Quite an awesome beast! The trail was narrow at this point. Would you have passed him or not?

    Bull on the trail - Pass or not?-bull.jpg

    A bit of background - I've probably seen him 50 times in the past five years, ever since he was a teenager. He never looks angry, and I usually talk to him as I pass by, nervously, at 30 feet or more. I'm guessing that he knows me...

    As a counterpoint, about 25 years ago I was climbing a fire trail and came across another bull about 50 yards up. He began growling, in a deep low loud voice like nothing I've ever heard, pawing the ground, and snorting. Easy decision! If I had been coming down from above, I would have probably had a very bad day...

    Anyway, yesterday I turned around and headed back up the hill for some bonus climbing...

    Anyone else have Bull stories? Any cowboys or ranchers out there that can give advice?

  2. #2
    NRP
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    Yeah, just pass. Bulls usually don't get pissed that often.

  3. #3
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    No, I would have turned around too. Not worth the risk of getting knocked off the bike into the trees - maybe with your bike where you wouldn’t be easily found, and then trampled to death.


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  4. #4
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    For some reason they don't bother me while hiking, but there are times I'm scared as hell to pass on my bike.

  5. #5
    EAT MORE GRIME
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    well since a Bull is the most dangerous livestock to own, and one step, squash, kick or head butt can crush your skull, not even mentioning horns...and they can flip a car over no problem, I stay the hell away from them

    #dumbwaystodie
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  6. #6
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    if you stop at a safe distance, make him aware of your presence, Make noise, he will most likely move.

    I notice the cattle aroubd here are pretty tame. Unless you have a dog with you.
    Extremely protective of their offspring.



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  7. #7
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    i watched my friend get chased across a meadow up in the sierras, by a bull, and some of his posse of cows. i started to laugh until it sunk in just how dangerous the situation was. IIRC the meadow was called BUCK meadow. we called it _ucked meadow after that.

    my buddy cleared the fence backpack and all. like an Olympic champion.

    i would have turned around. i'd look like crap smashed into a goo under that hoof.
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  8. #8
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    Yell Toro! Toro!! Toro!!! at the top of your lungs while passing. He'll move right over

    We have a Bull or two from time to time at Toro. Pretty tame in all of my experiences. Probably tired from raping all the Cows.
    "There's two kinds of people in this world - Walkers and Talkers." Which one are you?

  9. #9
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    A friend was riding by a small herd of cows/calf ,when one of them turned into him . Knocked him off and broke his shoulder .

  10. #10
    jrm
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    Pass um and give um a big ol mmmmmmooooooovvvvvvvvveeeeeeeee...it works with the EBRPD cows..

  11. #11
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    Hop on their backs and try for that magic 8 seconds....

  12. #12
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    My Mom said I should make sure to wear a red shirt. (Or was it DON'T wear a red shirt. I forget...)

  13. #13
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    Years ago I was riding some single track in Belmont by Crystal Springs Reservoir and came up quickly on a huge buck. I startled him and he bolted away down the path. Being young (and dumb) I tried to see if I could keep up with him. We were going at a pretty good clip when the trail came to a dead end 'cause of some huge blackberry bushes. That darn buck stopped on a dime turned around and charged straight at me. He was huge - full rack and all. He took up the WHOLE trail. I yanked my bars to the right and dove as far as I could. My heart was pounding out of my chest. OMG, never again will I follow a buck!!
    Cheers! Mark

  14. #14
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    I'd pass slowly, cautiously, using a sing song voice while gauging his behavior. Slightest hint of discomfort on his part & I'd back off.

    I once got chased by some lean longhorn mofo breed in the Carribean, thinking Nevis. Anyway, didn't see him until he was bearing down on me. I ran to a tree and we played ring around the Rosie for about 45 minutes. Eventually he stopped trying to out flank me and stayed put just staring at me. I backed off slow and low using my sing song voice. Pretty much killed my day as I was exhausted afterwards.
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  15. #15
    Ride Fast Take Chances :)
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    It all depends on the body langue of the bull. Some are calm other are not. I've had a 1000+lb bull snort and stomp at me and I backed away as fast as possible. Even mamma cows can get aggressive if you get get between them and there calf's.
    If there's doubt, there is no doubt. You did the right thing. Live to ride another day.
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  16. #16
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    Riding EB Parks you run into this often. I do the same, talk to them, make sure they take a peek at you, then look away. If they do any pawing or head shake you need to back off slowly and stay as far away as possible while getting around them.

    If they continue to eat I just mosey on by. I have had females be aggressive when tending to little ones at times. Can be scary in a tight trail situation for sure! In your pic that is a little tight, think I would have done the same.

    The coolest cow experience was descending into a meadow full of cows fairly spread out. One started to run then another, next thing the entire herd is running along in my same direction, was surreal and luckily they all kept their distance.

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  17. #17
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    Perfectly timed thread. I live in Scotts Valley next to Glenwood Preserve where they just opened one side to bikes but will keep the other closed to bikes because they're concerned cyclists will scare the cattle. Any good examples to dispel this myth? What places in NorCal successfully mix the two? Thanks

  18. #18
    Flat Pluto Society
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    Who will be the recipient of this year's No Bull Pass Prize?

    I crack mice elf up.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by edenger View Post
    Perfectly timed thread. I live in Scotts Valley next to Glenwood Preserve where they just opened one side to bikes but will keep the other closed to bikes because they're concerned cyclists will scare the cattle. Any good examples to dispel this myth? What places in NorCal successfully mix the two? Thanks
    East bay, where the cows have more rights than a cyclist.

    I ride with my dog sonetimes.
    Ive had about 20 cows not move and take a stand middle of trail all because they confuse my lab for a predator. If they would only stay clear of the trail, would be no issue.

    Never have i notice the cows get aggressive w me though.
    Dismounting, stand your bike up vertical and scream at them as you pass usually does the trick. And dont turn your back, just in case one wants to get smart.

    Im sure if there were any overly aggressive cattle, they would be relocated to a non public area.




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  20. #20
    fc
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    Nnnnnnnnnope
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  21. #21
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    They graze on some of the logging areas around me. Sometimes when you pass one will get scared and run down the fire road you are traveling on. I have had some follow me as this happens until finally they get the idea to move off the road. They were looking after their buddy. They can run pretty fast and far. Beware


    me is they can run pretty fast and far

  22. #22
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    Pass a bull, there is no try.
    Hogan Lake blog. A section of Hogan Lake trails here.

  23. #23
    cmg
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    bunny hop up his neck & wheelie drop off his arse



    better nail though, or you're fvcked!!!
    always mad and usually drunk......

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaloKera View Post
    East bay, where the cows have more rights than a cyclist.

    I ride with my dog sonetimes.
    Ive had about 20 cows not move and take a stand middle of trail all because they confuse my lab for a predator. If they would only stay clear of the trail, would be no issue.

    Never have i notice the cows get aggressive w me though.
    Dismounting, stand your bike up vertical and scream at them as you pass usually does the trick. And dont turn your back, just in case one wants to get smart.

    Im sure if there were any overly aggressive cattle, they would be relocated to a non public area.




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    Yup... if you ride East Bay Regional Park District trails enough you'll be around cattle fairly often. I've definitely had times of trepidation trying to pass on single track but I've never run into aggressive behavior that's led me to turn around. I've even flicked my bell at times, which in retrospect probably wasn't the best idea.

    The advice given in this thread above makes sense. Pass cautiously, dismount if tight quarters, if you sense aggression back off.

  25. #25
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    Just sing out:

    'Whoopitee-aye-yay, git along little doggie', and yodel a bit...
    This is either a good thing, or a very bad thing.

  26. #26
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    Usually when I ride through a herd of cows on on the trail (no Bull...) the cows give me a look like "I'm not moving", and then there is a short contest of wills. The cows usually look away when I get within about 10-15 feet, and saunter their fat butts off the trail.

    Often the teenage cows are a bit braver/more stubborn, and stand their ground until I'm pretty close. Then there is some confused milling about. I'm going to re-think getting so close since rangeriderdav mentioned his friend getting a broken shoulder!

  27. #27
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    The Bull was in the same place this morning. I think it's his new happy place - half a mile away from his 150 wives.

    He does have an interesting job description...

  28. #28
    NRP
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    Did you ride past him this time?

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by NRP View Post
    Did you ride past him this time?
    I really wanted to. He looked kind of friendly (maybe...), his tail was wagging a bit, but I chickened out.

  30. #30
    cmg
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    Quote Originally Posted by FZBob View Post
    - half a mile away from his 150 wives.
    ...


    Quote Originally Posted by FZBob View Post
    He looked kind of friendly (maybe...), his tail was wagging a bit
    tommorow if he winks at you, get the hell outta there!!!!!!
    always mad and usually drunk......

  31. #31
    May contain nuts
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    Cows with calves can act aggressively
    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/a...ectid=12102110

  32. #32
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    When I was a young 12 year old I, I took a shortcut to my destination through a farmers pasture. There was a big black bull in that pasture. I’d say twice the size of the one in the OP’s picture, maybe not, I was 12. As I was hurriedly “wogging” along and watching him off to my left about, 100’ off and almost to the barbwire fence on the on the other side he suddenly charged. I barely made it over the fence before he got to me. My pant leg catching a barb ripping 6” of cloth along with a good 2” slash on my leg. Bleeding profusely but I was alive and on the other side. My young 12 year old life passed before my eyes.

    So the question was, would I pass that bull in such a narrow space and so close? Knowing what I know today, HELL NO!


    By the way, some of you are confusing “cows, cattle” for bulls. Bulls are usually kept by themselves in a separate pasture than a herd of docile cows or cattle. There’s a reason for that. Mean mofos and untrusting. Plus they mate with any lady within reach. So if you are passing more than one or a herd, I doubt you’re passing any bulls.
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  33. #33
    NRP
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    If you do get chased, just channel your inner rodeo clown and try to have some fun.

  34. #34
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    Some good advice here...Agree that in the East Bay parks, you have to be used to riding with and through cows...But I always go slow and look to see what the cow/bull is doing before riding past. If any signs of aggression I would not risk it.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmg View Post
    tommorow if he winks at you, get the hell outta there!!!!!!
    Now that thought will be stuck in my head next time I see him!

  36. #36
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    Here's a song to hum as you ride through a herd of cows.

    Cows with Guns: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQMbXvn2RNI

    (Then go home and have a nice juicy burger. Cows are our best friends…)

  37. #37
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    Cows kill more people (22) than sharks (1) or rattlesnakes (6) per year in the US. Driving deaths are about 37,000 per year in the US.

  38. #38
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    ^ Yet another reason to be prudent. The normal protocol is to let the Yeti Crew go first, then proceed with caution.
    Ride fast. Huck bravely. Waste no beer. Safety third.

  39. #39
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    Is it a steer, or bull?

    I used to live on a property where the owners had 3 cows as pets. Yes, pet cows (also two cats, two peahens, and a peacock).The livestock veterinarian said he had never seen an animal as large as Bruno. Made my 900 or so pound horse look tiny.

    Anyway, Bruno was basically a large dog. He would like to play, get chased around, etc. Absolutely terrifying when he is running at you full speed, but would never intentionally cause harm.

    That said...I would use caution if it was a steer. Calmly approach, watch body language, and decide from there. If it was a bull, I would just turn around.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Bull on the trail - Pass or not?-bruno.jpeg  


  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    Is it a steer, or bull?
    He's got a pair the size of grapefruits, so I think he's a bull...

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