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Passion required.
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last Thursday, my 85 year old friend, and riding buddy, road to a rally in
Tygh Valley, Or., about 30 miles South of The Dalles. It was a long day,
548 miles and eleven hours on the Road King, and I was glad to get into the
sleeping bag. Friday morning, I rode to Camas, Wa. to see an old friend,
and do some steelhead fishing on the Lewis River. The fishing was great, but
the catching part was awful. The ride along the Columbia River was very windy, but helped cool the 95 degree heat wave. Saturday, several of us did a backroads ride around Mt. Hood. I got some great pictures, and bought some ofthe best cherries I've ever had.
Sunday morning, we packed up at first light for the long ride home
to Grass Valley. We were on the road by 6:15AM. We were riding mostly into
the early morning sun. About five miles from the campground, I hit a deer.
Like most accidents, it happened in a flash. The road was straight, down
hill, and three lanes, with no oncoming traffic. I was going about 55 mph,
and scanning ahead as best I could, the sun was a little to my left, and
there was some glare off the face shield. The deer was on the right hand
shoulder about 75 feet ahead when I saw him. Forked horn buck, still in
velvet covered antlers. There was another deer behind him on the hillside.
I let off the gas, swerved left. The deer bolted forward, and I hit him in
The left shoulder. The impact broke the running light bracket knocking the deer down far enough to miss the handle bars. He hit my right leg, and bent the saddlebag guard back into the bag. I was still going about 45 mph, and
managed to stay upright. We pulled off to access the damage, and change my
under shorts. OK. Still rideable. I had to bungee the running light back in
place. The deer struggled to his feet, and limped off. I thanked the
advanced riders' course for teaching me to break in a straight line, or to
counter steer hard left, without panic breaking, or I would have gone down
for sure.
In retrospect, this was an avoidable accident. I should have
been going slower and/or waited until the sun was higher to leave, but it was
going to be a long, hot ride. My guardian angel has always been a skinny
rascal, but after this, he looks downright anorexic. I think I'll let him
rest for a while, while I fix the bike.
Ride often. Ride long. Ride safe.
 
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