Anyone Ever Crunch a Squirrel?

17Stratton

New Member
I ride a narrow paved path in the woods chock-full of squirrels. The path is down hill, so travelling 28 mph. I've had a number of close calls with these cute rodents, and I feel a collision is inevitable. So my question is am I going down , or will my 300 lb bike (with me on it) feel a big bump but stay upright after I crunch the poor critter? Assume I don't freakout shortly before and during the collision. Has this happened to anyone?
 

rich c

Well-Known Member
You must really have huge squirrels if you expect to crash when hitting one! Don't you hit roots and rocks on the trail that are bigger than the squirrel? I hit one on a paved trail, heard it, didn't feel it. I try to call out to them, or ring the bell, but that little guy was too indecisive. The last thing I want to do is an emergency swerve and have that cause me to crash. I don't bounce too good at 67 years old.
 

AlanDB

Well-Known Member
Hitting anything can throw you, especially at that speed. I almost lost it when I hit a black walnut on the path and I was going half that speed. I fortunately was able to stabilize before going down, but it was close.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
If you do hit one (or get VERY close!), keep your wits about you. Keep on riding the darn bike! Think about the squirrel later.

This not a lot different than some really horrific car/truck accidents involving deer. They happen every year. Nobody want to run over Bambi, but common sense requires you to avoid running off the road due to to a really bad split second decision. If you can't easily avoid it, hit the damn deer! NOBODY will blame you for the resulting damage.
 

17Stratton

New Member
You must really have huge squirrels if you expect to crash when hitting one! Don't you hit roots and rocks on the trail that are bigger than the squirrel? I hit one on a paved trail, heard it, didn't feel it. I try to call out to them, or ring the bell, but that little guy was too indecisive. The last thing I want to do is an emergency swerve and have that cause me to crash. I don't bounce too good at 67 years old.
You must really have huge squirrels if you expect to crash when hitting one! Don't you hit roots and rocks on the trail that are bigger than the squirrel? I hit one on a paved trail, heard it, didn't feel it. I try to call out to them, or ring the bell, but that little guy was too indecisive. The last thing I want to do is an emergency swerve and have that cause me to crash. I don't bounce too good at 67 years old.
They get pretty big in NYC.
 

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rexel1

Active Member
I ride a narrow paved path in the woods chock-full of squirrels. The path is down hill, so travelling 28 mph. I've had a number of close calls with these cute rodents, and I feel a collision is inevitable. So my question is am I going down , or will my 300 lb bike (with me on it) feel a big bump but stay upright after I crunch the poor critter? Assume I don't freakout shortly before and during the collision. Has this happened to anyone?
my advice is just slow down a fair bit,using bikes is supposed to be kinder to the environment...no use if you’re running over ever animal on your rides.
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
On a group ride a few months ago, speeding down a long incline at 27 mph, one of my buds had a squirrel cross right in front of him, stop and dash right between his spoke. The squirrel was carried up into the forks bringing the bike to a sudden and complete stop. He went over the handlebars, breaking his ankle. The squirrel was stretched out about 4 inches extra in his mid section but remained whole. It was a gruesome mess. Kelly has to be transported by ambulance to the ER for treatment. Now on the weekly ride if anyone spots a squirrel the alarm call SQUIRREL!!! goes out at a full yell, partly in jest but also as a real warning.
 

PDXzap

Active Member
I never have run over a squirrel but have had a few close calls.

Long ago riding the bike paths in the Denver area I ran over a few snakes which apparently weren't hurt too bad because by the time I had stopped and turned around they were already slithering off the path or had already vanished into hiding. As a kid I was riding home from the dentist with some sisters in front of me when I heard them scream and noticed a 6 foot bull snake along the side of the road. As I rode by it struck out at me and I heard him hit the chain guard on my Sears sting ray.

Once while going maybe 15mph max along side a split rail fence maybe a foot and a half away my bike jumped into the air and I heard a crunching sound. I hadn't seen anything and my mind was racing because I knew there had been nothing in the path and I was fighting to keep the bike upright. The bottom rail of the fence had been hiding the fairly large Prairie Dog... I figure he spooked at me riding by and instead of running away he decided to bolt... the wrong way.
By the time my brain processed what had happened and I had slowed enough to turn around I was probably 30 feet away and I saw his body lying there convulsing. I started heading back to him feeling bad I had run him over and feeling even worse that I was going to have to crush his head so he wouldn't suffer. I was gathering the strength to stomp him, had got off the bike and was about 4 feet from him when his body stopped convulsing and he was motionless. I observed him for a moment or two then I picked him up and laid him back under the fence. The rest of ride home wasn't great.

I have and always will try to avoid hitting most anything that's alive and @AlanDB , black walnuts are dangerous!
 

17Stratton

New Member
On a group ride a few months ago, speeding down a long incline at 27 mph, one of my buds had a squirrel cross right in front of him, stop and dash right between his spoke. The squirrel was carried up into the forks bringing the bike to a sudden and complete stop. He went over the handlebars, breaking his ankle. The squirrel was stretched out about 4 inches extra in his mid section but remained whole. It was a gruesome mess. Kelly has to be transported by ambulance to the ER for treatment. Now on the weekly ride if anyone spots a squirrel the alarm call SQUIRREL!!! goes out at a full yell, partly in jest but also as a real warning.
Ugh! I never considered the "squirrel stretch spoke" scenario. I think I may just sound my horn the entire time during this stretch of my commute ....
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
On one morning commute in the dark passing through an urban park, something ran out suddenly which I believe was a rat. It was partially caught in my spokes and I felt some impact and saw some fur flying but I never got a good look at the creature. On arrival to work I could find no evidence of a decapitation or otherwise.

I often tell folks my biggest dangers in the urban portion of the commute are robbery, drunken and texting drivers, loose pit bulls and numerous other urban dangers ... but in the suburban portion, squirrels move to the top of the list right after drivers who run stop signs. I find that my Spurcycle bell is just the right pitch to really send the squirrel population into a panic.
 

SKent

New Member
We seem to have a fair amount of "suicide squirrels" here in Santa Cruz, CA especially on any of our actual bike paths. For some reason they seem to want to run out just as bicyclists are coming up. Many, many close calls. I think one hit the spoke's of a friend's bike. Rider was OK, squirrel ran off.
 
No squirrels but plenty of chances with the snakes and turtles that love to bask in the sun on the towpaths and trails I ride on. Like this one, Constable Bridge Road deep in the New Jersey Pine Barrens of Wharton State Forest. I came upon this poor girl, looking like she was already run over by the numerous enduro motorcycles running up and down the trails on this saturday morning, this past October. So, I thought I'd remove the poor thing from getting further crushed in it's death, so I grabbed it by the tail to mover her near the small drainage stream she likely came from......when I noted immediately her tongue started flickering in and out!

I found a stick and gently removed her off into the bushes next to the road, where she smartly and very quickly, moved into hiding. Mission accomplished. Not much further up here, I passed two off road motorcyclists that I have no doubt, would have run over and killed poor Snakey, had she still been laying out, sunning herself where I first saw her.

I always stop to move a turtle or snake out of danger and like others, I'll even go out of my way to avoid a caterpillar or any other kind of living creature encountered on my ride.
 

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harryS

Well-Known Member
Almost ran over a chipmunk last week. It darted in front of the wheel. Coming home an hour later, same place, probably the same chipmunk. This time it run under the pedals. Wasn't going that fast because it was all leaves on pavement.

My wife thinks I'm crazy, but I will stop and police fallen branches off the path. I've had them kick up and fly off my pedals. Could easily get it thru the spokes like the squirrel above. This summer I even moved a small tree ("3 trunk) that had blacked half the path. It's still there on the side, lost in the shrubs.
 

Al P

Active Member
My wife and I don't ride too fast (12-15mph) so it's not hard to avoid rodents running across the street or trail. I have yelled at squirrels at times and they usually make an abrupt U-turn. One speedy chipmunk actually raced across the street, ran between her tires and kept going. She was doing about 13mph, but the munk was going faster. :D🐿

I wouldn't purposely hit an animal, but evasive actions can cause major accidents. The same goes for driving a car.
 

steve mercier

Well-Known Member
On a group ride a few months ago, speeding down a long incline at 27 mph, one of my buds had a squirrel cross right in front of him, stop and dash right between his spoke. The squirrel was carried up into the forks bringing the bike to a sudden and complete stop. He went over the handlebars, breaking his ankle. The squirrel was stretched out about 4 inches extra in his mid section but remained whole. It was a gruesome mess. Kelly has to be transported by ambulance to the ER for treatment. Now on the weekly ride if anyone spots a squirrel the alarm call SQUIRREL!!! goes out at a full yell, partly in jest but also as a real warning.
OH MY that is unreal!