Some of us live and ride in areas where we see several different species of wildlife. I always enjoy seeing animals although admitedly there are some I would prefer to see in videos and not in person. Here where I am at in northern Indiana I am somewhat limited in the number of different species. Other than deer and horses I don’t see any sizeable animals like bear, elk or moose. And I don’t think I want to either. On rare ocassion I may see a garter snake but I can’t recall ever seeing any other kind of snake while out riding. Of course, I have seen squirrels, raccoons,  ground hogs, rabbits, oppossums and on rare occasion foxes, skunks, wolves, a large weesel looking critter, large snapping turtles, one large painted turtle and many different birds including hawks, buzzards, eagles, pheasants, turkeys and various water birds. And, of course, I have seen lots of different insects. A few of them saw me from the inside as I had managed to swallow them.

Once when riding along with some friends we were going around a curve on the Towpath Trail when the guy in the front suddenly stopped and yelled for us to stop as he spotted an animal over in a field off to the right side. If my memory serves me correctly I think it was a deer, but I could be mistaken. It was at the same time period we had been seeing wolves and eagles. The second guy had just got around the curve when he slammed on his brakes right in front of me. I was still turning thru the curve so slamming on the brakes to avoid running into him resulted in my trike tipping over spilling me out onto the asphalt pavement and me losing some skin as in OUCH! That is one time I would just of soon not seen the animal. I was sore for a few days following that.

A few days ago I was riding along on the Towpath Trail when I saw an animal on the trail ahead of me. As I got closer it did not move which was rather unusual. As I got much closer I could see it was a raccoon but not of the normal appearance. This guy was a light gray color and just looked quite old to me. He just laid there as I rode past him. I knew enough not to mess with him as he could be very dangerous. I rode on past him and then turned around to go back toward him. As I got closer to him he slowly got up and walked off of the trail over to the side. My thought was he was probably nearing death. He just stayed right there watching me watch him. I turned back around and continued my ride leaving him alone which I am sure he appreciated.

Recently I came upon the first snake I have seen in several years. I don’t know what kind of snake it was. It looked silver and still quite young as it was skinny and only about 14 inches long. Usually I only see garter snakes.

Certainly encountering wild life can greatly enhance our ride. Just remember that there is a reason they are called WILD. Enjoy them but don’t mess with them. They could wreck your day and then some. And never mistreat or harm them. God is still keeping the books and those who mistreat wild life will answer to Him for doing so. Enjoy the ride and …



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Author: Steve Newbauer

I have a few current blogs (tadpolerider1, navysight, truthtoponder and stevesmixedbag) so I am keeping busy. I hope you the reader will find these blogs interesting and enjoy your time here. Feel free to email me at tadpolerider2 at gmail dot com (

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