Trips and Trials: Bambi
> > > Trips and Trials : Bambi's Mom
13 June 1999
From: "Kathy E. Gill"
Subject: bambi's mom [aka, 1st deer]
decided to go to Mt.St. Helens, east side today. down 7 to 12 to 25.
on 7, noticed roadkill doe on oncoming shoulder. thought, hmm, well,
it's mid-day, they don't usually move this time of day. at least it
put deer "in my mind" so to speak.
turn east on 12. tooling along, road is smooth and wide, wide shoulders.
heavy trees on both sides. notice dan has pulled away from me. glance
at speedo - only 60. <shrug> not in a hurry ....
enter deer, bounding out of the woods, poised on the left hand shoulder.
I grab clutch & brakes. She bounds into oncoming lane. Seems to pause.
We stare at each other. I seem to remember willing her to just GO! Dammit.
She bounds into my lane. One more bound and she's across the road as I
pass behind her. A few minutes for the adreneline to actually *hit* my system.
I was very lucky
a) I was riding in the left half of my lane. Had I been in the right third,
I'm fairly sure I would have hit her backside. Unless i had more brakes left.
[ if i'd been in the Jeep - I'm sure I woulda hit her. it doesn't stop as
fast and is a helluva lot wider].
b) The road was straight; the pavement was dry.
c) I was only going 60 mph. This is an unusual state for me ... my throttle
hand seems to have a "minimum set" at 70.
d) I have good brakes [thank you, will, my mechanic friend at Cascade] and
good rubber [thank you Renton MC]
e) I have a really good friend who schooled me on stops of all kinds when I
got my bike last year. Take a Bow, JimH. However, I think I can use some
more emergency stop time. <wry grin>
I did not lock up anything - couldn't even tell you if anything squealed.
Everything was a little surreal, and I'm not real sure when I actually "came to"
so to speak.
I thought about this for quite some time today [it happened oh, 10+ hours
or so ago].
Swerving in such an instance seems a fruitless endeavor. You don't know if
the deer will keep going straight or stop, right? I don't think swerving
ever entered my mind, actually, until it was over. Should it have? If so,
when? after she actually got in my lane? By then, I was on top of her.
I seem to remember that locking up the rear brake on the beemer is a hard
thing to do - but what about front brakes. I did s-q-u-e-e-z-e really hard/fast,
but they didn't lock. How much more "braking power" did I have? Don't know.
How to find out in controlled situation? [I know, I need EMRC, but I wasn't
sure I was experienced enough yet in April].
This was the day's highlight, but wasn't the only <gasp> moment.
On one of the curves on 25, when I was riding point, met a light pickup truck
who had decided my side was his side -- well, about a foot or two of my side,
anyway. Fortunately, I'd already made a tactical decision to ride in the
center-or right of center on that road.
On another set of curves on 25, saw that the second curve - ahem - had a
bridge in the middle of it. For some reason, that freaked out my brain.
I remember thinking [a la Beth] LeanLean ChinUp LookDAMMIT as I entered
the curve at 40 [posted 25]. Also noticed that i "knee-ed" my gas tank as
though it were a horse. Don't know if this is the first time I've done that,
but it's the first time I've noticed it. This couldn't have been very scarey,
really, because time did not slow down. <g>
Taking a slight turn:
I joined WL about a year ago -- it was right before the Goat Roast. I can
remember feeling/wondering "who *are* these people" ... the chatter/social
aspects of the list were foreign to me. Overwhelming, actually. I can
empathize with Grant, even tho I *knew* it was a social list when I joined.
It was my first "social list" [actually, it remains the only social list I'm on].
Beth introduced me to the woman who sold me my bike last August. Today -
10 months later - I took my second 350 mile day trip and crossed 7K mile
threshold. Everything isn't "automatic" yet ... but it's getting there. I
think I have "intermediate-itis" ... I was lusting after the SV650 in
this month's cycle world ... of course, it's too tall [isn't everything] ..
but darn it sounded nice! and under $6K.
I don't believe I would have become an "every day, all weather" rider were
it not for this group. Thanks for all the on and off list support .... some
days I still wonder where this bug came from and then why it took so long to
bite <g> ... I have a lot of catching up to do! Sure am glad I
got the bug though. ;-)
Carl I'm so glad that I did not hit the deer after your admonition <g>.
I hate to disappoint. ;-)
The Perfect Vehicle: 1st Year
Finding the R65
Trips and Trials