Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
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Pastychomper
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby Pastychomper » 18 Jan 2019, 4:26pm

Warning: Non-cycling anecdote.

Some years ago I was walking my little brown dog in a park, on a dark autumn evening. That part of the park was wide and otherwise deserted, and the dog was having fun running about. There were woods all around and if the dog went too far I lost sight of her against the shadows, but she didn't have a wonder lust and it was so quiet I could hear her paws skittering across the grass. So I slowly walked along and listened while the dog rushed away, rushed back until she was well in sight, then past and away again... then again she come closer, and closer, and zipped right between my legs and ran away - except this time there was no dog to be seen! It wasn't that dark, but I'd clearly heard a dog run under (or through) me while seeing nothing.

It turned out she'd stopped near some trees just before the wind blew a scattering of dry leaves past me.
Everyone's ghast should get a good flabbering now and then.
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foxyrider
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby foxyrider » 18 Jan 2019, 7:27pm

I've had my share of wildlife interactions in the dark over the years. An owl mistaking me for prey on a woodland trail - it was dusk so the contrast was a bit off. Was certainly a surprise when the claws scraped across my helmet!

Then there was the face off with a stag on a quiet lane, my front light was running a bit low, I almost rode into the Stag and his does which got the heart thumping. (there had been a couple of recent injuries reported in the press with deer/human incidents). The stag stood his ground, a stare off, until his womenfolk had 'escaped', he then snorted and bounded off over the fence himself.

I've had the weird shadow thing too, powerful headlamp on quite a tight beam but with some limited side scatter which cast very weird shadows on some bits of road! Had a similar effect riding in thick fog a few times, spooky indeed.
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Bmblbzzz
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby Bmblbzzz » 18 Jan 2019, 8:06pm

Seems unlikely to me the owl would have thought you were prey. Far too big surely! Perhaps more likely it judged you to be a threat that needed scaring off. However, I'm not an owl expert (I do like stopping to listen to the owls when riding at night though).

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foxyrider
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby foxyrider » 18 Jan 2019, 10:20pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:Seems unlikely to me the owl would have thought you were prey. Far too big surely! Perhaps more likely it judged you to be a threat that needed scaring off. However, I'm not an owl expert (I do like stopping to listen to the owls when riding at night though).


According to the guys riding with me it most definitely made a grab for my helmet which, if memory serves, was black with a bit of yellow trim.
Convention? what's that then?
Airnimal Chameleon touring, Orbit Pro hack, Orbit Photon audax, Focus Mares AX tour, Peugeot Carbon sportive, Owen Blower vintage race - all running Tulio's finest!

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kylecycler
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby kylecycler » 18 Jan 2019, 10:41pm

Just be thankful you don't live in Australia. Even in broad daylight...



Yoiks, mate! :lol:

(Orstalian magpies are a different species to 'our' magpies...)

9494arnold
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby 9494arnold » 19 Jan 2019, 8:58am

I do have a vague recollection of newspaper articles (and possibly here too) about birds of prey swooping down on passing cyclists .

I did once have a close encounter of the Dragonfly sort. Not very scary . Was riding with a friend who suddenly said "Don't panic just stop gradually" . So I did. One magnificent dragonfly neatly perched on my helmet. Have a picture somewhere. :)
(I don't think he intended to eat me but fair play for the optimism if he did ! :lol: :lol:

Bmblbzzz
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby Bmblbzzz » 19 Jan 2019, 11:04am

kylecycler wrote:Just be thankful you don't live in Australia. Even in broad daylight...



Yoiks, mate! :lol:

(Orstalian magpies are a different species to 'our' magpies...)

They're not even a member of the crow family. But a good reason to have your pump easy to reach while riding!

althebike
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby althebike » 19 Jan 2019, 12:07pm

I was cycling across Salisbury plain last year, during the night when a military exercise took off. Suddenly there were flares all over the place, bangs, and helicopter buzzing me. I guess some peeps thought I was part of the exercise.

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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 19 Jan 2019, 12:39pm

Hi,
Been buzzed twice by a helicopter..............yes you duck :evil:
No reason other than the owner was bored, could of been military on the Cheviots? 80's.
Priority Is Still 500K In 24..Just Dreaming...Stay Focused Guys And Keep Sharp...
You'll Find Me At The Top Of a Hill...............Somewhere...After Dark..

LollyKat
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby LollyKat » 19 Jan 2019, 12:42pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:They're not even a member of the crow family. But a good reason to have your pump easy to reach while riding!

In Australia we saw many of the cyclist had zip ties sticking up from their helmets, to stop the birds from coming quite so close. It would still be quite scary, though.

Recently I had a jackdaw swoop down and scratch my head with its claws when I was walking on a busy pavement in Edinburgh. Why me?!

charliepolecat
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby charliepolecat » 19 Jan 2019, 3:33pm

Recently I had a jackdaw swoop down and scratch my head with its claws when I was walking on a busy pavement in Edinburgh


Now if you had been wearing a helmet.... :roll: :P

Flinders
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby Flinders » 19 Jan 2019, 3:37pm

Buzzards round here have attacked cyclists- going for their helmets. And buzzards are big so-and-sos close up- their wingspan can be best part of five feet (Barn owls are more like 3 1/2 feet).
The A51 around Sandon is a known place for it. I've not experienced it directly, but have had buzzards flying disturbingly close alongside me on the back roads more than once on roads round there, and occasionally elsewhere in the general Stafford area.

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Mr Tom
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby Mr Tom » 22 Jan 2019, 12:24pm

I've seen a few bats in my time cycling along the river path, but they are so small and fast and gone in a split second they don't really frighten me too much.

I remember in Canada a big black bird, maybe a big crow kept dive bombing me and landing on the next lampost along a street. I realised I had a black hoody over my shoulders and I think maybe it saw me as another bird.

fastpedaller
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby fastpedaller » 22 Jan 2019, 12:46pm

Flinders wrote:Buzzards round here have attacked cyclists- going for their helmets. And buzzards are big so-and-sos close up- their wingspan can be best part of five feet (Barn owls are more like 3 1/2 feet).
The A51 around Sandon is a known place for it. I've not experienced it directly, but have had buzzards flying disturbingly close alongside me on the back roads more than once on roads round there, and occasionally elsewhere in the general Stafford area.


Whilst driving slowly along a country lane in November I had a buzzard approach from the left rear and I thought he was about to land on the bonnet! Quite magnificent, and as wide as the car.

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Pastychomper
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Re: Really creepy experience cycling home tonight (I did solve the mystery eventually)

Postby Pastychomper » 22 Jan 2019, 1:14pm

Mr Tom wrote:I've seen a few bats in my time cycling along the river path, but they are so small and fast and gone in a split second they don't really frighten me too much.

I remember in Canada a big black bird, maybe a big crow kept dive bombing me and landing on the next lampost along a street. I realised I had a black hoody over my shoulders and I think maybe it saw me as another bird.


Maybe someone in a black hoody had been scaring the crows in that area - seems they notice such things.
Everyone's ghast should get a good flabbering now and then.
--Ole Boot