Have you ever come around a blind corner and suddenly found some sort of hazard right in front of you causing you to have to slam on the brakes or steer suddenly off of the trail if that is possible? I have had that happen a few times. It most often has been a homeless person lying down on the trail … sometimes asleep. Sometimes it has been a bicycle, e-motorized scooter or a so-called mo-ped (in reality a motorscooter). Sometimes it has been a large rock or chuck of concrete. How about riding out in bright sunshine and having to go into a dark area such as under a bridge … has this happened to you and again finding some sort of hazard in your path that you can’t even see due to your eyes not adjusting to the darkness from the brightness?
One time there were 3 of us riding along on our trikes plus a guy on a bicycle. We were following each other fairly closely. I was in the lead when we went under a bridge into darkness like I am talking about. Right in the middle of the underpass I was able to make out a motor scooter laying across the trail. Somebody had placed it there. I slammed on the brakes and yelled “STOP!!!!” to my friends behind me. Fortunately we all got stopped without incident. There was no place to go to the side around it so it was good that we managed to stop. The picture above is the place it happened but the trail as well as the bridge are all new since that time and it is no longer like riding into a dark cave like it was then. Anyway, myself and another guy managed to drag the trike out from under there so we could continue on our ride.
As to the homeless people laying on the trail I assume they were drunk or on drugs or both. I think I did run over one guy’s hand or arm as it was covered up by a blanket which was sprawled out over the trail. His body was over to the side. I yelled out to him “passing by you” but I am pretty sure he was asleep and didn’t hear me. He suddenly groaned as I passed by him … when I ran over part of him. Several times I have had to call the police to have them remove these people off of the trails. There have been several times I have had to deal with people laying or sitting on the trail. Personally I think they have elevator problems. Just yesterday I came upon 4 of them sprawled out on the trail. They saw me coming but didn’t budge.
One time I was riding along with another friend on a tadpole trike when we came upon a motorscooter which had been abandoned and set on fire right on the trail. The plastic components were all melted and stuck onto the asphalt. The asphalt received a little bit of damage. My friend and I removed what we could and the next day I brought a floor scraper with me to scrape off the rest we could not remove. Of course, this incident was reported to the trail management and the police dept. That was a bad way for someone’s joy ride on a stolen motorscooter to end. The owner didn’t get that scooter back.
The city of Fort Wayne, Indiana has a whole fleet of these e-motorized scooters for rent. They are nothing but a menace. I sure wish they would get rid of them. The buttholes that rent them leave them parked all over the place … in the middle of the trails and under bridges, right in front of ADA ramps on sidewalks, etc. Most often then turn them sideways so they take up even more space.
I have come around a curve and ran over a goose a couple of times when they were on the trail. They did not have time to move out of the way. They had the misfortune of being at the wrong place at the wrong time. Fortunately for them they survived.
A city street under a viaduct for a railroad crossing where it is always dark under there can be hazardess. It is especially dark on an overcast day. It has lights on under it but they are too dim to do any good. I was riding along passing under there hoping I didn’t encounter anything as it is just too dark to see it if it is there. One time it was there … a big chunk of concrete. I hit it and was thrown up into the air. Fortunately no damage was done. It just scared the crap out of me. No, not literally! Stuff like that can be really dangerous. And one never knows about the malicious pranks some people pull. People could get seriously injured or even killed as a result of such nonsense.
I have had some very close calls like when I rounded a blind corner and a deer suddenly jumped across the trail right in front of me barely missing me … probably about 12 inches or so in front of my face. That will get your attention. I could have reached out and touched him/her. That could have hurt if we would have collided.
I don’t know how many times I nearly got hit by bicyclists who were riding over on my side of the trail and not paying any attention. A head on collision with someone on a bicycle is not something I want to participate in. Fortunately up until now everytime this has happened they “woke up” at the last possible second and managed to swerve over missing me.
Tree limbs and bushes also come to mind as in “hey, that wasn’t there yesterday”.
Hey, be safe out there!
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