Extreme horse hazard

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
ambodach
Posts: 827
Joined: 15 Mar 2011, 6:45pm

Re: Extreme horse hazard

Postby ambodach » 15 Aug 2019, 5:45pm

Once the farm I worked on had a load of fence posts stolen. Result all the yeld cattle and young beasts escaped without our knowing. Got a call from the police that they were rampaging in the gardens in the village of Kilmalcolm several miles away. Farmer got behind them on a tractor on the way home but I had to run ahead to stop them taking every diversion or side road. Then I had to run past to the next junction every time. Good job I was young and fit but knackered at the end of the trip.

Bmblbzzz
Posts: 2825
Joined: 18 May 2012, 7:56pm
Location: From here to there.

Re: Extreme horse hazard

Postby Bmblbzzz » 15 Aug 2019, 7:22pm

whoof wrote:
Bmblbzzz wrote:
whoof wrote:I once came around a corner in a small lane in Cornwall to be confronted by a herd of cows running toward me. They were being pursued by a farmer who shouted "stop them". I got off my bike, jumped up onto the verge, dragging my bike after me and let them run past.

As the farmer ran on by he said " I thought I told you to expletive stop them" to which I replied "do I look like Buffalo expletive Bill?".

Assumed knowledge? I've seen people stopping cows (though just the odd one or two, not a herd of them charging) by simply standing in their path with arms outstretched, but it probably takes a bit of cow-knowledge to do that. I don't think I would! (And it turns out you do have cow-knowledge and judged it unsafe in this case.)


I was once asked to dangle from a crane hook holding onto some rope netting that had been slung over it and be lowered more than 5 storeys to 'get the job done'. I refused and when asked why my response was, there are things I will risk my life for, this isn't one of them.
Stopping some cows is another.

Sounds well dodgy and probably a cue to start looking for another employer.

Bmblbzzz
Posts: 2825
Joined: 18 May 2012, 7:56pm
Location: From here to there.

Re: Extreme horse hazard

Postby Bmblbzzz » 15 Aug 2019, 7:28pm

I've just remembered (prompted by Gaz's photo and tale) that a couple of weeks ago I was riding down the Sharpness towpath and there were a family of swans there, one standing between path and water, one curled up with its head under its wing actually on the path and others swimming on the canal. A lot of feathers around as if one was moulting. I stopped, assessed, dismounted and walked gingerly round them, which caused no response other than the curled up one to lift its head. Once round them, I turned round to have another look at them, and they didn't like that! Neck stretched out and not so much hissing as growling - a sound I didn't know swans could actually make! So I got on my bike and rode off before they got fighty. There were some more cyclists about quarter of a mile behind me and I think they got delayed a bit... :(

whoof
Posts: 1888
Joined: 29 Apr 2014, 2:13pm

Re: Extreme horse hazard

Postby whoof » 15 Aug 2019, 11:01pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:
whoof wrote:
Bmblbzzz wrote:Assumed knowledge? I've seen people stopping cows (though just the odd one or two, not a herd of them charging) by simply standing in their path with arms outstretched, but it probably takes a bit of cow-knowledge to do that. I don't think I would! (And it turns out you do have cow-knowledge and judged it unsafe in this case.)


I was once asked to dangle from a crane hook holding onto some rope netting that had been slung over it and be lowered more than 5 storeys to 'get the job done'. I refused and when asked why my response was, there are things I will risk my life for, this isn't one of them.
Stopping some cows is another.

Sounds well dodgy and probably a cue to start looking for another employer.

I wasn't allowed to stand on a chair and change a lightbulb whilst I was working in Europe. However I was Africa and all this health and safety went out the window. I was also required to go to places the UK Foreign Office said 'do not visit under any circumstances, if you are there leave immediately' when I pointed this out I was told " you can find all sorts of scare stuff on the internet". They also said I could be accompanied by a man with a machine gun. I said that I would rather be kidnapped than killed in the middle of a shoot-out. I left that job in 2008.

Jon Lucas
Posts: 238
Joined: 6 Mar 2009, 6:02pm

Re: Extreme horse hazard

Postby Jon Lucas » 16 Aug 2019, 4:20am

Bmblbzzz wrote:I've just remembered (prompted by Gaz's photo and tale) that a couple of weeks ago I was riding down the Sharpness towpath and there were a family of swans there, one standing between path and water, one curled up with its head under its wing actually on the path and others swimming on the canal. A lot of feathers around as if one was moulting. I stopped, assessed, dismounted and walked gingerly round them, which caused no response other than the curled up one to lift its head. Once round them, I turned round to have another look at them, and they didn't like that! Neck stretched out and not so much hissing as growling - a sound I didn't know swans could actually make! So I got on my bike and rode off before they got fighty. There were some more cyclists about quarter of a mile behind me and I think they got delayed a bit... :(


Swans can be extremely aggressive if they feel threatened. I led a walk by Clevedon Marina a couple of years ago and, despite taking a wide berth around them, they managed to force half our group to turn back.

Gaz's photo reminds me of cycling in the western Highlands and surprisingly coming across a traffic jam in the middle of a moor with no road junctions or housing anywhere to be seen. I cycled past it and found a large herd of highland cattle blocking the road. They were quite happy to let me pass, but not any cars.

profpointy
Posts: 467
Joined: 9 Jun 2011, 10:34pm

Re: Extreme horse hazard

Postby profpointy » 16 Aug 2019, 9:06am

I recall an occasion in the West of Ireland a long time ago. I was on the back of my mate's motorcycle when we came across a herd of cows ambling down the road. He pulled to one side and I got off, intended to guide the cows past the bike so they didn't push it over. Then I saw this big bull at the back of the herd - and he seemed to be doing the mad eye-rolling thing so I was slightly perturbed. I stayed put but decided that hopping over the wall was my escape route if he did get nasty. They all slowly ambled past, bull included, but at the very back of the herd was a small boy with a stick. He couldn't have been more that 5 years old but he was perfectly happily fetching the cows in. I felt a bit of a woose it must be said

I've had a few "interesting" incidents with herds of bullocks, where they start by following you, then the ones at the back start running thinking they're missing out, and it soon becomes a stampede. You just have to turn and face them, wave your arms, or maybe run towards them. Occasionally you do think "it's a long way to the gate !" but they are only playing really.

MOARspeed
Posts: 24
Joined: 5 Jun 2019, 11:09am

Re: Extreme horse hazard

Postby MOARspeed » 16 Aug 2019, 3:32pm

RodT wrote:Homeward bound on le Vélo Francette through Mayenne, I hear the sound of galloping hooves. Then around the bend comes a herd of five or six big, cobby, coloured (piebald) horses, going like a cavalry charge. They are saddled, bridled and RIDERLESS. I hurl myself and the bike onto the verge as they go pelting by. A couple of terrified dog-walkers have taken cover behind a tree. Then comes a single horse, again without a rider. I manage to stop it and try leading it back to whatever incident has caused this catastrophe. Of course, it only wants to run with the others, and it’s kicking up such a fuss that I have to let it go. After a short conversation with the dog-walkers, I ride on, thinking I’m bound to come across some riders without horses. But there is no sign of them, or of any incident. So I shall never know what happened, and even though, a couple of weeks later, it sometimes seems like an incident in a dream, I know, from the memory of thundering hooves and wild-eyed horses that it wasn’t. And how on earth infantry soldiers ever stood up to a real cavalry charge I can’t imagine.


France you say? Unfortunately the way France is going I half expect they've been dealt with Morocco style and thrown in a ditch :(