Thursday, August 2, 2007

Day 46 - Liverpool to Little Falls NY - 2 more car hits

Day – 46 – Liverpool to Little Falls, NY
Derek and Penny get hit by cars L

Euphoria Meter (1-10): 7
Despite witnessing and hearing of two car-biker incidents, the ride itself was exhilarating. New York drivers go to the bottom of the list of biker friendly folks.

Ride Stats:
Distance: 85 miles
Riding Time: 4:30
Max Speed: 34.7
Average Speed: 18.7mph
Total Miles traveled: 3,321
Miles to go: 308

Severe clear and getting hot hot hot. It was 95 degrees and very humid at the end. No wind early and slight head wind for last third of the ride.

Incidents and Rider Report:
More biker-car incidents, only one I was involved with, but despite these I still had a great ride.
I started with a nice breakfast with Jim Emshoff. He reported calling Bill Patchett last night along with Janna and that Bill is doing a-ok. Jim also reported that Bill’s helmet was completely off of him somehow when he hit. The lesson for all of us bikers is to keep that thing snug on our heads and the chin strap tight as well. Bill’s head took a big hit that we wonder if it might have been less severe if his helmet had worked properly.
Today’s big story starts again, right after breakfast. Gerard and I hook up and quickly catch the Miller boys (without mom and dad) climbing up a fairly steep hill we have early in the ride to get out of town. They of course stay with us, not letting us pass them significantly on the hill. Both are good climbers and like to ride at a good clip. However, they are also good family kids and hang with mom and dad for the majority of each of our daily rides. The last few days I think Bernice and Mike senior have taken off earlier and let the kids sleep in a bit. Shortly after the four of us are together, we are riding 2 by 2. Gerard in front of me on the left and Mike in front of Derek on the right. So if you get the picture, Derek and I are side by side just behind Gerard and Mike. We had just come over the hill and are riding slowly through city streets, early morning (rush hour in NY) and are trying to find our way in unfamiliar territory.
Gerard and Mike cross a small intersection where on our right is a blue car stopped at a stop sign, waiting to turn left. As Gerard and Mike pass just by the car it begins to pull out. Derek and I assume they are just creeping up, but no. The car proceeds to accelerate and as I move left the car hits Derek in his rear wheel. Derek is now coming at me side ways! He is being pushed by this car. Fortunately Derek maintained his poise and somehow stays upright on the bike and is uninjured. He pulls over, upset, throws his bike down and runs over to explain traffic laws to this poor lady. We were very lucky. No one was hurt, a bent rear wheel and an apologetic woman who wrote Derek a check based on Mike Munk’s estimate to replace the wheel. ($150). Cell phones were deployed. Mike Munk came and exchanged the rear wheel out and we went on our way again. Gerard and I are now on a mission to “deliver” the young bucks back to mom and dad. They trail behind us and draft as we forge ahead. Eventually we catch up with Mike and Bernice and tell the story again. All is well that ends well. I love happy endings.
The other incident was one of the San Francisco treats, Penny. She went down as a truck pulled in front of the rider in front of her (Barry) who hit his brakes quickly and Penny didn’t have time to react. Another close call, but she wasn’t really hurt badly, just a scrape on her knee and the bike was ok.
After the ride we all agree that it may not be the “last week” as much as it is New York. No offense New Yorkers, but as a group we have been yelled at, flipped off, horns blaring, cussed out for no apparent reasons more than we have anywhere else along the ride.

How I Feel (1-10): 10

One of Bill's injuries

Our hotel buffet diner

Bill Patchett stops to assist with the accident victims.

Bill the day after, still smiling.
Bill's worse side....ouch
Derek's steed gets a new rear wheel.
Penny after getting hit.
Penny's knee injury. Wait til tomorrow and see how it feels.


Russ Morgan said...

You better take it easy. I want you back in one piece, so I can hear about the trip in person. This may be my last chance to check your blog, because we leave Colorado on Sunday, but I will check in as soon as I get home. Hopefully, everybody will still be OK

Anonymous said...

Only a couple more days! Good for you and the others who are still peddeling away. You all should be so proud of all the work you have done.