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Horribly Wounded

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Part 1: Flowing The Trail

Last Saturday Little Cam and I went for a ride at Buffalo Creek. I am fortunate to live right smack in the middle of some of the best mountain biking terrain anywhere. I picked some flowing single track along the Colorado Trail.

Little Cam is a pretty bike.

Here are a couple of videos made by somebody else but this is exactly where I was riding Little Cam.

The terrain is quite varied from dense forest to burn areas. This segment is fun and fast. Since the trail rolls it is a good idea to keep momentum.

The guy that made the video says the burn in this area was 130 years ago. The burn was actually in 1994.

The guy in the video is doing mountain bike touring and is kind of poking along. These trails are pretty darn fast. According to my Garmin, Little Cam was sailing along some of these segments at 21.8 mph! The trail through the burn area is a narrow groove. By riding the outside of the curves, you can take advantage of the terrain and use the trail side as a mini berm. But you have to crank the bike over pretty hard. This is really, really, fun.

Part 2: Picked a Bad Line

Little Cam and me were zipping along. We come around a curve riding the berm. As we fly through the curve, the berm becomes a small steeply cut ditch. The bottom of the ditch is filled with baby head rocks, which cause Little Cam's tires to kick out. Me and Little Cam are at one heck of a steep lean at this point. We are literally rockin' and rollin'. I am not the least bit concerned. The bike feels good. Then the front wheel glances off a big stationary rock. This glancing blow causes Little Cam's front wheel to wedge into the ditch. Little Cam goes from 14.8 mph to 0 mph in 1/100th of a second. Not good! I know exactly how fast we were going because the subsequent collision with terra firma clobbered my Garmin and stopped the Garmin cold at the instant of impact !

Part 3: Buck Brush

Little Cam and I parted company. Little Cam continues down the trail sans rider. Once Little Cam realizes I am no longer on board, he gently falls on some soft grass to wait for me. He suffers not a scratch! As I fall through space and time sans bike, I am expecting to lose a little hide. My choice of fun has a few consequences. Unfortunately, I landed face first in a buck brush!

Buck brush is a small tough woody shrub. Deer crop the ends of the branches that grow a course flower that resembles a brown woody cauliflower. As a result of the deer feeding on buck brush, the branches resemble sharp sticks. I have, in the past, fallen into yucca plants and prickly pear cactus. Falling into cactus is mere child's play compared to falling into buck brush!

Part 4: "Horribly Wounded, not Mortally Wounded!"

After I hit the buck brush, I thought, "What the heck?" A human being automatically closes their eyes when anticipating a blow. I have no idea what I hit. Fortunately I just glanced off the buck brush. All I felt was some tugging on my face. After the fall I got to my hands and knees. I opened my eyes. The whole world was blurry. I realized my glasses were missing!

Not good!

I need to be able to see to find my glasses and I need my glasses to see. I feel around in the grass. After an eternity I find a lens! I hold the lens over one eye and continue my search. I come upon a pair of twisted frames. The nose piece is gone! I pop my lens into the frames and put the mangled glasses on my equally mangled face. After another eternity I find my other lens. I now have a complete, albeit twisted, pair of glasses.

Where is my bike?

I spot Little Cam down the trail about 40 feet. I am pretty concerned that the bike could be broken. I am a few miles from the car and I don't want to carry the bike. I was pleasantly surprised to find the bike in perfect condition. The chain had just slipped off the crank ring, which is very easy to fix.

I got back and the bike an beat a hasty retreat to the car. I called my wife on my cell phone. I got her voice mail, "Hi Honey, I fell off my bike and I am horribly wounded." She called me right back. She asked, "Did you say you are mortally wounded?" I answered, "I don't think I am mortally wounded. I am horribly wounded." She chuckled, "Is that all? So what else is new? Do you need to go to the emergency room?" I answer, "Nope, I got a good first aid kit."

This is my uber back country first aid kit. The kit is 5" x 7" x 3" and holds a lot of stuff.

The kit is nicely packaged. I augmented the kit with several BZK "Stingless" wipes. I used these wipes to clean pebbles, dirt, wood and grass out of my facial cuts. I also put in the kit a full tube of triple antibiotic ointment. The tiny ointment packets that come with most portable first aid kits are not enough.

I have been accident prone my whole life. Mostly because I am not a cautious person by nature. My mantra is: Faster, Farther, Higher! As a result, I am an expert at self treatment. I have 12 first aid kits. I have two mini-kits I carry with me on runs and bike rides. My wife used to think I was OCD when it came to first aid kits. Now she thinks I don't have nearly enough!

Part 5: Just Looks Bad but it Doesn't Hurt

When the brakes on Ultra Stumpy locked-up on Bergen Peak and hammered me into razor sharp rocks, the pain was incredible! This time, my close encounter with local vegetation looked but but did not hurt much.

See, I am a happy guy.

Here is a close up. I think I came out of this pretty well. My self-administered first aid did the trick. I also iced my wounds when I got home.

I banged my elbow a little.

This bruise on my thigh was caused when Little Cam's handle bar end slammed hard to the left as a result of the front wheel getting wedged in the ditch.

My right leg got a little chewed-up. I also twisted my neck a bit. I have been to the chiropractor twice. I am good to go now.

I am heading out early tomorrow for another ride. I will take it a bit slower. I am going to hit up Flying J, which is very easy and completely predictable.

Thanks for reading my blog.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    The picture of your face tells the story... happy that you are back safe.
    2319 days ago
    thanks for sharing! I need to get out on the MTB trail more! I love the thrill of fast trail riding!
    2339 days ago
    You got some very bad bruises! I hope that you get some rest over Thanksgiving, and that you and Cam are back on the trail soon.
    Wear some elbow and knee pads!
    2340 days ago
    Good heavens to murgatroid, man!!!!!!! Them's some purty injuries. Glad to see that you came out in one piece, though. Wheeee! Epic ride!!!!!
    2340 days ago
    GLad it wasn't worse and doesn't hurt but it sure looks painful! Your wife knows you really well LOL! Hope your next ride was good. I'm headed out for a 9 mile hike up a peak today. However I hike and not ride so although risks are there I'm not traveling as fast. But I understand your love of the outdoors and the mountains, whether it's riding or hiking. It gets in our blood and won't let us quit LOL!
    2341 days ago
    "I am heading out early tomorrow for another ride. I will take it a bit slower."

    Yeah, right!

    Great blog title, and great blog. Glad it was you and not me : )

    2341 days ago
    I don't know whether to laugh or double over in sympathy pain when I read these things. "Oh yes... Bruce hurt himself again!" I'm glad this one looks worse than it is and that your bike didn't suffer.

    You must have made quite the conversation starter at Thanksgiving!
    2341 days ago
  • BILL60
    So, when is the next ride??
    2341 days ago
  • NWFL59
    Glad you made it through the sudden impact without severe injuries and were able to fix yourself without going to the EMR. emoticon
    2341 days ago
    not again aaarrrggghhh
    2341 days ago
    Heal up fast!
    2342 days ago
  • LAURIE5658
    That gravity will bite you in the butt every time. BUT you were prepared and had fun...to a point. Happy healing!
    2342 days ago
    Cool blog and way to tough it out, jumping right on the bike the next day. My kids and friends thought it was cool the way I jumped back on my Harley during Biketoberfest, after getting knocked over by a 4 wheeler earlier in the day.
    You just have to know when the pain is a sign of real damage that needs to be rested.
    2342 days ago
    Oh NO!!! emoticon
    2342 days ago
    Nice battle scars! My war-wounds are not nearly so pretty (well, they are, but they generally fade quite well: I'm a boulderer, not a biker :P).

    Hope you heal up nice and proper for the next go round! Glad to hear Little Cam came out unscathed!
    2342 days ago
    Oh my goodness! I'm glad you haven't (yet) crossed that very thin line between thrillin' and killin'! Sounds like Little Cam came out on the better side of this deal.

    Thanks for setting a good example by packing first aid kits. Wise indeed!

    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving - I think you have much to be thankful for!
    2342 days ago
    You are really lucky you didn't poke your eye pur! Those glasses probably saved your eyes! I glad you were not mortally wounded ! Have fun today.
    Happy Thanksgiving!
    2342 days ago
    Good grief..... I'm glad the bottom line is that you are having FUN!!!

    I actually thought at the beginning when I watched the youtube videos that - mountain biking looked like fun.

    Great blog though.... I really enjoyed reading it.... and actually felt like I was experiencing your ride.

    Love also that you name you bike!!!!

    Heal quickly!
    2342 days ago
  • CHARITY1973
    Gotta love someone who names their bikes! I always comment to my better half that he rides 'Jemima' more than me, teeheeheehee. That trail sounds like fun. That buck brush, well that sounds vicious! Thanks for sharing your adventure.
    2342 days ago
  • no profile photo DOUGLYE
    Man, you HAVE to take up some sport that is less dangerous.
    How about skydiving or Base Jumping
    2342 days ago
  • ACTIVE_AT_60
    Ouch - glad nothing was broken. I had an encounter with gravity recently as well. Not as bad as yours, but still ... feel better soon.
    2342 days ago
    Glad your wife is cool about all this. Guess she's used to it...? :)
    Since you were more worried about your bike than yourself I'm glad your bike is okay. And since you're not mortally wounded, you'll heal.
    Be careful out there!
    Happy Thanksgiving.
    2342 days ago
    Careful with that bike riding. My brother broke some ribs when he flipped his bike a couple of years ago. His bike suffered some injuries also.
    2342 days ago
    You're a braver man than I am. I'll stick with running. My fall a couple of months ago was a bad one, but near ass bad as your fall.
    Good luck as you continue to ride.

    2342 days ago
    OMG!!!! I pity your wife! As soon as I seen the title of this blog I thought "OMG, what did he do this time?" God bless that woman. (Sorry I can only imagine what goes through her mind)
    Seriously, I hope it is not as painful as it looks. It looks like quite an ouch!
    Take care!
    2342 days ago
    Ouch, ouch, although looking at all those bruises I'd say you were a lucky guy that you did not hurt any one place more seriously. Have a great Thanksgiving.
    2342 days ago
    Oh wow; you got bucked off your bike and landed in buck bushes. I am very glad that the escapade only resulted in some first class bruises. Your guardian angels must have been working overtime for you and Little Cam. I'm very glad to hear that you are back on the trail again and that you plan to take it a little slower while you heal. Here's hoping you are up to full speed soon. You are right- you can never have enough triple antibiotic ointment. I'm very impressed with your take on first aid kits- I have a few too LOL Full props to your wife! She has nerves of steel :-)
    2342 days ago
    That grin!
    Oh my goodness, I'm glad it was only 'horribly' and not 'mortally' LOL I hope you and your bumps and bruises and family have a great Thanksgiving!
    emoticon emoticon
    2342 days ago
    What a wonderful writer you are. I felt I was there with you going face first into the brush. Love how you name your bike . emoticon
    2342 days ago
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