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Pink Kona
05-19-2004, 01:15 PM
and bears - OH MY!

Last night after work my husband went on his biweekly adventure to Little Si - a climbing area in the North Cascades. Eager to try some new mountain biking territory - I came along and ventured to a ride called the CCC Road. Happy to be outside in the Mount Baker/Snoqualmie National Forest I quickly climbed 3 miles of steep logging grade to a double track.

I passed through several "Road Closed" gates - leaving any chance of human encounter behind me. The sun was shining - the weather pleasant - but as I started slowing due to the steepening of the grade - I started absorbing my suroundings. I glanced behind me and my camel back scared the heebie jeebies out of me. I thought it was someone behind me. Then the perpetual paranoia set in - the "I'm all alone -no one knows where I am. If I get attacked by a wild animal or accosted by some crazy lunatic and scream no one will hear me....."

At about 5 miles in, I crossed a large stream and was quickly getting deeper and deeper into the deep dark forest. Even whistling didn't help - nor did my "Ants go marching one by one, hurrah, hurrah" song that I sing when spooked. My heart still quickens thinking about it. Weren't there cougar attacks in this area? These bugs are huge! What if they bite? What if I get a flat and have to stop? What was that crash in the forest? Finally I trusted my instincts - and turned back. Luckily the return was downhill and I quickly reached my car. Where was my sidekick Princess Little Wheel when I needed her?

snapdragen
05-19-2004, 06:01 PM
Those lions aren't only in the woods. We had a mountain lion show up in a suburb of Palo Alto this week. :eek:

bentforlife
05-20-2004, 07:31 AM
There have been reports of bobcats and one cougar in one of the Trinity River parks in Arlington, TX. That's between Ft. Worth and Dallas, although everything is built up between. There are many walkers, joggers, and bikers using those trails. It's a little scary I'm sure for anyone in that area.

I've come across some crazy armadillos, dogs, and snakes on my rides. If I saw a cougar I would probably be able to set some speed records just on the adrenalin alone!:eek:

Everyone be safe!!

Donna

jobob
05-20-2004, 08:13 AM
I was chased by an irate goose this weekend. I passed too close to her young.

Hey, she hissed at me, it was scary, I tell ya!! :eek:

- Jo, who will not even delve into the crazy kamizake squirrels who like to play chicken with her front tires.

PS - I could not believe where that mountain lion in Palo Alto was found, that is a very heavily populated residential area, and he had to cross some busy roads to get there ! We passed within a mile or 2 of that area on a couple of our Cindy training rides.

bounceswoosh
05-20-2004, 08:17 AM
I was scared of cows yesterday ...

I'd seen horses in this area before, but not cows. They were walking right across the path, taking their sweet time. Not wanting to "widen the trail," but not wanting to see what a startled cow looks like, I waited till they wandered off to the side a bit, then walked my bike past them.

I don't know if cows ever get violent, but I didn't want to find out what happens if they do!

bentforlife
05-20-2004, 09:53 AM
monique,

Having worked around a lot of cows and horses in my youth, I think you can be assured that they are more afraid of you than you are of them. Especially cows, pretty dumb creatures. You would not want to cross a bull, however. They can be pretty mean and protective. I would definitely give any bull a wide berth.

Horses are a little more unpredictable. I would just let them take their time. Most horses will just stare at you and try to get out of the way, but some can have a "wild hair" and actually charge you. Most will stop short of actually hitting you, but again they are unpredictable. Usually if you wave your arms and yell "Stop" they will stop.

Most "domesticated" large animals are just going to ignore you but like people they can be unpredictable.

Hope this helps.

--jobob, got to love those geese. My oldest daughter hates them too. They've chased her down at the lake and while on vacation before. Love the hissssss! That can be scary if you've never heard it before. Usually that's as far as it gets but I imagine a peck by a big, mad mama goose could leave a nice bruise.

Donna:)

bounceswoosh
05-20-2004, 10:26 AM
Thanks for the cow input. I would never purposely share pasture space with a bull -- I want a fence between them and me at all times.

I would like to assume that that the folks who put the horses, cows, or whatever out to pasture in an area that's open to walkers and bikers would be sure that the animals are people-safe, but ... I really don't know.

kpc
05-20-2004, 03:19 PM
I saw a part of an interview this AM on TV w the woman who was attacked by the mtn lion. She was very cool, respectful of the wild and the risk of the animals in it. She was also saying she still loved mtn biking and would not give it up. She was calm and pleasant, it was good to see that she was going on w her life although it looked like she had some plastic surgery or something. Very strong and cool.

Irulan
05-20-2004, 03:40 PM
For a really interesting exploration on current situation regarding mountain lions&humans read
Beast in the Garden by David Barron. It's a well done look at humans in cougar territorry, habituation, historical and evolutionary issues in an objective view point, focusing on Boulder CO. I foudn it both fascinating and easy to read.

Penny