Last Sunday we rode OCNP . Since we haven't had in any significant rain in quite a while the trail was dry, dusty and starting to marble (break up) in some areas. It was also one of those days that I wasn't riding all that great, so I was taking it pretty slow. Riding slow works on the flat stuff, but when going through a dip (especially a dip with an exposed root on the side of it) you really do need to carry some speed.
Momentum really is your friend, 'cuz without it you can fall down.
Now being an "experienced" rider/racer I know this. I also know that if you are about to crest a climb, but you are lacking in said momentum and are in the process of no longer being on the rolling surface of the two wheels that your bike has, it can be advantageous to grab any trees that might at the top of the climb. This usually will keep you and your bike close to the top and you can pull yourself, with bike, up to the top and then ride on your merry way. Seems that the tree at the top was not willing to co-operate with me and it took a step back, either that or I just missed it... nah... which resulted in me and bike succumbing to Newton's Law and sliding down the hill.
Just a little scraped up, but not a great way to start your ride. It also brought out my overly cautious side and the rest of the ride included avoiding anything the least bit technical.
During the rest of the ride I noticed that the bike wasn't shifting right and I was getting a lot of chain noise. Ran through the rear cassette, shifting was OK - just noisy. Tried the front shifter, dropping the chain into the small ring and could not get it to shift back up. Great, now I'm spinning like crazy.
Got back to the trail head and told the guys about what happened. They said they heard me yelling, but didn't hear any screams so figured I was OK.
I asked Alan to look at my bike. He found the problem pretty quick:
Now my ride is over and we're sitting around talking to the others. There's a kid there, maybe 9 years old, and we found out that he had hit one of the marbled areas that was right before a bridge and he ended up riding into the creek which was about a 2 - 3' drop. He was OK, no blood, just a little shook up.
So... maybe my little slide down the hill wasn't so bad (at least I had blood).
A little bit later another group of riders come in, walking their bikes - not a good sign; and, one was walking in two bikes - definitely not good. One of their group decided to try to take a dirt jump that was just a little bit, no A LOT, over his skill level and landed on his head. Luckily he was wearing a helmet and it took the brunt of the impact shattering into little pieces in the process. The bike didn't fare much better.
nor did his teeth
You really can't tell from the picture, but the right side of his face and especially his nose (broken?) are pretty swollen. There was also a dime sized hole on the inside of his bottom lip.
We could not talk him out of self-medicating, but we did convince him that a side trip to the ER wouldn't be a bad idea. Don't know his final injury tally, but my little scrapes and broken cable quickly became insignificant.
19 hours ago