Monday, June 28, 2010

This is not a staged photo

I took this picture on Father's Day. My bike is laying, perfectly balanced, inverted on the road on the far side of the barbed wire barrier it just flew over. As Christine relayed in her excellent report, The Mountain Turtle is Airborne!, the bike and I hit this barrier at speed. I landed about 6 feet further down the road than the bike did. The flight was quick, the landing was a bumpy miracle.

I didn't quite "stick the landing" as they say in gymnastics but I did OK. I was in good enough shape to dust myself off, walk back to the other side of the fence and take this photo.

My right hand did wind up swelling like a boxing glove from where I punched the ground and with more than a week's hindsight I now am pretty sure that I dislocated or broke my little finger and cracked a rib. Since the finger isn't one I needed to work the brakes on my bike and the rib only hurt when I coughed, sneezed or moved in the wrong way, I count myself as very, very lucky.

11 comments:

neil said...

I did have one puzzle. In the report at the time I recall you mentioned something about putting the wire back (leaving it how it was). While I can understand that if it was a gate- surely that barbed wire is a hazard and, if on a public right of way, illegal? I believe it would be in UK anyway, maybe different in USA...?

Kent Peterson said...

In the ranch lands of the western US it is different. The code of the west is "leave 'em as you found 'em."

smith3237 said...

Know that flying W at the cattle guard in WY was a shock to your otherwise Zen experience from Banff, but sans a few minor injuries you are okay, and we're all grateful for that. You let us all know through your MTBcast call-ins the true meaning of why being a "Mountain Turtle" is a life lesson we all need to learn. Congrats on a stellar ride, thank you for stopping by to visit us Butte, Montana, and for sharing your love for cycling and the world around us. It was so refreshing to meet you. Hasten slowly and let it all sink in! Rick Smith, Mechanic at The Outdoorsman

Craig B. said...

Kent! Great race, loved the reports! Blessings to you & Christine.

RoadieRyan said...

Kent

Congratulations! Glad to hear you are safely back home and in the arms of your sweetie. I am sure if it wasn't for a few little pieces of metal you'd be still going but a mechanical forcing you out pawls in comparison to your achievement.

Chapeau Mt Turtle

Ryan
W. Seattle

Apis said...

Still scratching my noggin over why they felt the need to fence across a cattle crossing...

ha1ku said...

I'm confused too about how those crossings work. What is the correct way to cross when the wire is strung out across the road like that? I could totally see myself falling into the same mishap, even when driving a car.

SS:Mtn Biker said...

Man,that HAD to hurt! I've done similar on an old YZ250 a few years ago,but was fortunate to have been riding in the winter,and well "padded",LOL! Good thing it wasn't your (nose) picking finger broken,huh? =P

Glad you're home and safe,my friend!

Steve

derrick said...

oh man. i went back to look at this pic again. i can just picture it. glad you're okay!

Vik said...

Glad you didn't get hurt worse...=-)

That's one dirt road obstacle I hadn't thought of.

Groundshine said...

What a crash! I went across this cattle guard a few hours before you - early in the am. It had rained the night before so the road was so mucked up there was no way to hit that x-ing with any kind of speed. So you were lucky to miss that section of mud anyway.

I saw the rancher later up the road and he asked me if I had closed the gate. I said "barely" as the posts were so long they got caught in the grate. It was a two hand and two knee operation to close. He said he was on his way to fix that problem... so again it would have been worse to hit it the way it had been. He said he had to put the fence across the gate to keep the calves in with their mothers. If they don't stay "mothered-up" at that age they just don't ever put on any weight.