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More Letters 5/22 - 5/30 

Gnarliest Bike Accidents

My story is short. The photos say a lot. Drunken cycling is not a favorable alternative to driving, although a DUI may have been cheaper. I wasn't even in motion; this is from trying to get on the bike...twice. Lost a tooth, broke one off at the gum line; broken nose, AC separation in shoulder, and a one supportive, extremely pissed-off wife.

—Jacob McCollam

My son Spencer "El Guapo" Goodin is 7 years old and recently turned expert for BMX racing. Both he and I race for Alchemy Racing-GHP based out of Bend. OnSaturday, May 18, Spencer was taking practice runs around the track at a state qualifier race in Klamath Falls. He tried to clear a double on the second straight, but missed the landing and went head over handlebars, getting a near compound fracture of the radius and ulna. He was in surgery for two hours and had two plates and eight screws put in his arm. He is out of BMX for five months. We are so proud of our little man, as he is ranked 18th in our district and No. 1 in the state in his age group. He won't be getting to states this year, but took second place at the Great Northwest Nationals in Redmond last month. The first thing he asked the orthopedist when he woke up from surgery was when he could be back on his bike racing. He lives and breathes BMX and has said that someday he's turning Pro so that BMX can be his "job." As I write, he's on the iPad watching World's Biggest BMX Jumps—studying the landings, we hope!

 —Michelle Goodin

After I crashed my riding partner took one look at me and said: "Dude, you're going to need some work." Broken nose, hole-in-face and stitches inside and outside my mouth.

—James Williams, Source senior writer

Next month will mark the 10-year anniversary of my bike accident. Some friends from spin class coaxed me to "come outside" and go for a ride with them. They loaned me a bike, jersey and helmet. We rode up the old McKenzie Highway before the snow gate was open, so there were no cars and it was super safe.

I was relieved to make it up the hill to Dee Wright Observatory, and looked forward to coasting back down.

I thought I had passed the hairpin turn I had been warned of, so I was going very fast when I came to it. I'd like to point out that it was a lot of fun, right up to this point. I woke up on drugs after being flown to St. Charles Bend in a helicopter. I had a concussion, broken ribs, broken collarbone and punctured lung. It set me back for a while, but I still go to spin class, where occasionally they play the song I wrote, "Dead Man Sittin' in a Saddle."

—Dennis McGregor

Here's a good one for you. Look up Portland Twilight Criterium 2010 Epic Moments in Bike Racing. Fast forward to four minutes. Back tire blew in a corner at 30 mph.

—Brian Seguin, Webcyclery Masters Cycling

I was mountain biking with the owner of Hermosa Tours in Durango, Colo. and next thing I knew I hit the rock covered ground.  Immediately blood spewed everywhere but I hopped back on my bike.  I was convinced I could just ride back to the car and take care of it with a first aid kit.  Blood continued to pour out, and I got shaky.  At first Matt was positive he could clean it up and maybe glue it back together.  I agreed at first, but instead rode to the Animas Urgent Care Center.  I walked my bike into the center, leaned it on the wall, turned around and looked at the lady.  I had blood down my arm, legs, hands, jersey and shorts. She gasped and led me back to a room.  A giant pressure washer was brought into the room; they shot me up with something that numbed the area (a little) and went to work. I spent the rest of the week riding the High Country Trails and had a blast!

 —Heidi Faller

Ruth Fox took a good spill on the McKenzie River Trail—when she crashed she managed to land on a dead tree which punctured her shin. When we got to her, the end of the tree was stuck in her leg and she was tangled in the bike. There was blood on the rocks surrounding it and we had to hike her out and hitchhike back to the car. She ended up with a pile of stitches and a brace to keep her leg straight.

—Matt Fox

I took a Dodge Ram to the head. Saved from drowning on my own blood by a friend who only lived in the town for that summer. Helicoptered to Charlotte from Boone.

—Jeff Sanders

Getting T-boned at 6 am by a sweet old lady is always a good story. There was also the time I cartwheeled through blackberry bushes while marching downhill at Oakridge.

—Rob Kyne

As a grade schooler, I was pedaling madly to catch up to some buddies in the neighborhood. My foot slipped off the front pedal and went into the spokes of my front tire, sending me and the bike over the top of that front wheel and onto the old, rocky pavement at speed. Fingers jammed, skinned elbow, and road rash on my forehead, face and nose, I was instantly bloody all over and quite dazed.

—Dave Nelson

Riding home from work in the dark, my headlight was turned too low. Surprise, there's a trash can in front of me—Bam! I ate the pavement face first. I got about 20 stitches in my face, a broken wrist, broken arm, and a separated shoulder. I wish it was more exciting or dramatic, like a cougar attack or sprint finish pileup. Oh well. Note to others: Please don't put your trash can in the bike lane. Note to self: Turn the headlight up!

—Kurt Segrist

All I can think of is one time my mom was giving me a ride on the handlebars and my foot went into the spokes.

—Weylin Lee Noldner

I was riding my bike to Munch and Music when a 16-year-old boy took a turn right in front of me. Knocked me off my bike and broke my was my birthday.

—Sabrina Sloan

Three years ago August while riding a section of the Umpqua River trail, I hit a rock and somersaulted over a 35-foot sheer cliff at the base of which lay a huge rock pile. Just as I was about to hit the rocks, a previously unnoticed tree limb knocked me into a thicket of small bushes. There I assessed: no broken limbs, glasses gone, a huge cut on my forehead, and a bit woozy.

I was able to crawl to the side of the cliff and climb hand-over-hand back to where my bike lay. I rode three miles to the trailhead virtually blind and then another five down the highway. With my spare pair of glasses retrieved, I drove back to the trailhead where my wife, who had been hiking, patched me up for the trip to Mercy Medical Center in Roseburg. Nine staples in my forehead, we headed home to three months of slow recovery.

Then, last August, almost to the day of my Umpqua misadventure, I lost concentration for a second on the trail in Shevlin Park and took a huge beater down a steep embankment. The result? A collapsed lung and ER time at St. Chucks.

On returning home from the ER, I got a call from Kay Cook at the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame in Colorado. "Are you sitting down?" she asked. "That's all I can do," I replied. "Well, she said, "you've been elected to the Hall."

"For what?," I countered. "For having the most visits to the ER over a career?"

—Bob Woodward


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