Author Topic: Virginia  (Read 1012 times)

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Offline rondickinson

Virginia
« on: May 22, 2014, 07:22:56 pm »
We are starting the TransAm, west to east.  Have done about half of Virginia.
1.  Beautiful state.
2.  There are dogs here, 4 vicious chases so far.  But three of us blew whistles hard and loud and it stopped them in their tracks.  Even a pit bull.
3. Mechanicsville Va. Shows a cycling only camp site.  It's there in the middle of town and the guy is great, but it's rough ground and a tarp and bucket for your pot.   We went to a hotel.
4.  Williamsburg to Mechanicsville, don't expect many services.  Only found one or two C stores.
5.  We went from Charlottesville and into the Blue Ridge Parkway.  gorgeous.  Virtually no service on route in the park.  Visitor center has water.  Pack some food for the 26 miles.  We were lucky to stumble onto a resort at Love Va.  1/4 mile past the Love sign.  Camped for $25 and has a deli.  11 more miles to get out of the park but we were bushed so we stayed.  adventure cycling has this placed marked but it's hard to see from the road.  Look for a white church,

Offline John Nelson

Re: Virginia
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2014, 10:30:13 pm »
Good of you to share your experiences. Now I'll share one of mine. If you think the dogs are bad on the TransAm in Virginia, wait until you get to Kentucky--you ain't seen nothing yet! Have fun!! I wish I was there again.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Virginia
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2014, 06:36:04 am »
Good of you to share your experiences. Now I'll share one of mine. If you think the dogs are bad on the TransAm in Virginia, wait until you get to Kentucky--you ain't seen nothing yet! Have fun!! I wish I was there again.
Yeah, going by memory, I think we were chased once in Oregon, once in Virginia, and something like 30-40 times in Kentucky.

Offline rondickinson

Re: Virginia
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2014, 03:11:51 pm »
Thanks, what was your defense?  With all this load we can only get going so fast.  The whistles seem to be working.

Offline bobbys beard

Re: Virginia
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2014, 09:53:04 am »
haha, evey tourer has a story or two involving a hungry dog ;)

i tried many things, but the most frequently effective for me is to slow right down and sometimes even get off and walk for a bit (if it's an ankle nibbler), ignoring the barking maniac until it loses interest or more often than not, tries to become your best friend.

most blogs i've read tell you that pepper spray is the best solution. they're probably correct, but i'm not into causing animals pain and what if it's crazy gunslinging owner sees you spraying his hairy security guard?






Offline John Nelson

Re: Virginia
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2014, 01:08:16 pm »
If I can outrun the dog, which is usually only possible on a downhill, I do so. Otherwise I stop. Most other things you can do from a moving bike are either dangerous or ineffective (at least against some dogs).

Offline staehpj1

Re: Virginia
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2014, 04:36:41 pm »
Oh and I didn't mention Missouri.  There were quite a few there.

Most on the TA were just in it for the chase and really weren't intent on biting.  Also most dogs on the TA have been pepper sprayed before so even pretending to have pepper spray works well.  Add a PSSST PSSST sound for even better effect.  Outrunning them was pretty effective for us on the TA because they seemed to mostly chase us on downhills or flat ground.  Not sure why we were so lucky on that tour.  I don't generally bother to carry it but, we found Halt! brand spray pretty effective when someone have us a can.  I had one companion on the TA who was pretty freaked by dogs so I stayed back and acted as a decoy until she made her escape and then sprinted away.   I found it to be a lot of fun.

I had fewer dogs chase me on other tours than the TA but on tours in the southwest there were some really mean ones.  Some from the Central Valley of California and some of the reservation dogs on the ST seemed especially vicious.

Offline jamawani

Re: Virginia
« Reply #7 on: May 26, 2014, 08:15:43 am »
Research shows that there is a direct correlation between the number of confederate flags and the number of dogs running loose on the road. Southern Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois are not much better than Kentucky, but the northern parts of these states are way better.

On a trip thru the Deep South, I had to contend with packs of dogs. A deputy in the county seat told me, "Just shoot 'em!" It's a point of view that is almost third-world. BTW - I jump off my bike TOWARDS the offending dogs with a bike pump raised and my voice at jet-engine levels. I cannot reprint the words I use on a family website. Always works.

Offline jwalden

Re: Virginia
« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2014, 10:25:19 pm »
I never had problems with dogs in Virginia on WE+TA, only in Kentucky and Missouri.  I just kicked it up to 22-23mph or so and outran them (heart-poundingly, in the psychological and physical senses both, a handful times, but moderately comfortably all things considered).  Not sure about overall chase numbers, but I don't think it was 30-40x for either state.  I'd guess maybe 15-25x total for both states and the entire coast-to-coast trip.

I did have one pretty funny moment in (I think) Kentucky, after I'd become somewhat acclimated to the occasional chase, where a small little one-foot-tall dog decided to chase me when I was fifty feet past.  I couldn't tell if he was serious.  But his chasing, while faster than leisurely pedaling, was so obviously ineffective that I got a good laugh out of it.   :)

Offline rondickinson

Re: Virginia
« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2014, 10:10:24 pm »
We are into Berea KY, and have had very few dog chases.  Today one came out and I was reaching for the whistle all while my front derailed flipped the chain off.  I went over.  Fortunately the panniers break the fall.  The dog just backed off.  I will say the few chases we have had (except for the first few in Va) were half hearted and once you blast the whistle they keep six feet out.

Offline indyfabz

Re: Virginia
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2014, 03:47:18 pm »
We are into Berea KY, and have had very few dog chases.  Today one came out and I was reaching for the whistle all while my front derailed flipped the chain off.  I went over.

You can suaully accomplish the same result with a loud voice (if you have one) while keeping your hands on the bars. Show it who is top dog with a menacing "No! or "Hey!"

Offline rondickinson

Re: Virginia
« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2014, 02:50:42 pm »
In Kentucky we only had three dog encounters where they came onto the road.  Maybe one in Missouri, none in Il, or Kansas.

Offline jamawani

Re: Virginia
« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2014, 05:17:03 pm »
Show it who is top dog with a menacing "No! or "Hey!"

Those are not exactly the words I use on dogs.

Offline litespeed

Re: Virginia
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2014, 09:21:49 am »
Swerving back and forth (if traffic allows) really confuses chasing dogs. In doing so I have gotten them all tangled up in each other, had them run into ditches, trip all over themselves and once even had one run head on into a signpost.