|Photo taken with my new GoPro HD camera (a Christmas gift from my family) on a handlebar mount. (They got it for me because they wanted me to be safe on my rides--not distracted taking photos).|
Today I did a twenty two mile ride on Coyote Creek Trail with a couple of friends. We had absolutely perfect weather--in the low 70s. My friend recently moved to that side of town and had discovered Coyote Creek Trail and was excited to share it with me. I have never ridden this trail before, but I have seen people on it as I whizzed by on the freeway. For a long time I have wondered where the trail head was and where the trail went, so I was pretty excited to finally check it out. The weather couldn't have been better--sunny and beautiful. Everything is beginning to turn green again and the blossoms are blooming.
It was all good except for a brief moment when I got distracted by a sign. I glanced over to see what it said. It was foolish of me because I was going fast downhill and nearing a curve in the trail. I had a chance to read "Trail Narrows". As I processed those words, I returned my attention to the trail just in time to see a curved rail fence looming in front of me. The sign was clearly put there to distract bicyclists. The railing was clearly put there to keep distracted cyclists out of the creek. I fell victim to target fixation.
I had to make a split second decision--bail with my bike trying to avoid the railing or hit the rail and make the best of it. I've never been a fan of broken bones or skinned body parts, so I flung my right arm over the railing hoping I would glide along it to a perfect stop with the rail under my arm and my bike firmly underneath me. Unfortunately, my bike had other ideas--it kept going. My feet were clipped in but miraculously broke free. I made some kind of not-so-graceful tumble, whacking my ribcage on the lower rail, but I came to a stop and found myself not too bad off all things considered.
The bike survived without any visible damage (phew!--I love my bike!). Myself--I have a skinned knee (bike pants survived--another phew! I paid $80 for them!), sore ribs and a very bruised ego.
ps to my family: You will be glad to know I hadn't put the camera on my handlebars yet--it rode out the crash safely zipped in the bag on the back of my bike :)