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Boone Area Cyclists suffer injuries

We've had a tough start to the summer season of mountain cycling in Boone.

I really love the guys I ride with.  These dudes drop the hammer on the crank and ride hard and with authority.  I aspire to be like them, but sometimes can't shoot the gap between my ability and their prowess.

I've been traveling the past several weeks and missed the local rides.  Had a report two weeks ago that Chuck took a bad fall while riding a descent on the new Blood, Sweat and Gears loop.  He's out for at least another month with collarbone, rib and pelvis injuries.  Chuck is a stand-up, noble guy who has a great relationship with his wife.  An excellent role model.  I went to visit him this past Saturday to offer a bit of conversation to pass the time.  That's what Chuck has for now...time.

Then another email hit the ride list-serve yesterday.  Steve, one of our best riders and leaders, went down in a pace line crash on the Bistro ride this past Monday.  He's out for the long count with a cracked pelvis and stitches in his head.

It's time to reflect on how I ride and with what effort.  When I was in Florida, aggressive motorists were the only true enemy on the road.  Now, the terrain is the formidable challenger.  We climb hard and then come down fast.  Reflexes can slow over the years and a slight twitch at the wrong moment can convert to lights out. And at 50+, injuries don't heal well, if at all.

No one of us can command other riders or tell them how to operate the bike.  The brake levers are there, you  apply pressure as needed.  It's also known that if you ride scared or with lack of confidence, bad events are coming.  Mountain cycling requires determination and power.  I want to be smart about my future on two wheels.  It's part of the package if I intend to live to ride another day.


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You have to look closely (click and enlarge photo if needed), but when you do, check out the 5th metacarpal (bone furthest from thumb).

The diagonal break is symbolic of what happens when your mountain bike handlebars snap around 360 degrees, and those bars catch your hand against the bike frame during the rotation.

Well there you have it. I got up after my ride over the bars and knew something was wrong, but didn't want to admit it. Rode about three miles back to the car, then went a week with some ice and heat. Thought it was good, until I smacked the same bone on the bars during a road ride the following weekend.

Time to stop the charades and get to urgent care.

For the past three weeks, I have been in a formed splint that kept the pinkie and ring fingers immobilized in a hooked formation. Don't want those tendons to move across the bone. As the doc stated, it's a "forgiving" break, but nonetheless you don't want to give the bone any excuse to shift; that…