18 Jun

A crash that broke my neck – literally.

Apparently I still haven’t acquired the skill to catch myself with my hands since my last crash four years ago. Both times I successfully let my face take the entire impact. This time was worse though.
I was looking forward to Wednesday Worlds, a group ride in Eagan. We were supposed to ride 70 mi. I decided to ride to Eagan from my place to get a solid ride in before the gravel race on Saturday. I met up with the guys and off we were heading East on Cliff road. We were about 10-15 people and we rode two deep going about 23mph. There was quite a bit of car traffic but we had a wide shoulder so it didn’t matter.
I was chatting with Mike about a gravel ride clinic I am planning on putting on in the next months. I was sitting third wheel when all of a sudden a big chunk of asphalt popped up in front of me. Before I could react I hit it straight on, lost control of the bike and made my way over the handlebar. 
While tumbling screaming across the pavement, the riders behind me were able to avoid riding into me.
I knew immediately I suffered some serious road rashes.
An ambulance ride later and five hours in the ER I got the entire list of damage.
Almost the entire list!
Broken collarbone, four facial stitches, two chopped teeth and a solid amount of road rashes which required that the blood pressure cuff was put on my calf.
Two days later I learned that I also broke my neck…or better two transverse processes in my neck. Apparently not a big deal. There is nothing I could do for it.
Riding a recumbent is a heck of a workout!
Five days after the ride I was able to ride again…a recumbent bike. But this would not be possible without the help of so many great people. The accident showed to me how amazing this cycling community is. I would like to thank everyone who helped (I apologize if I forget someone):
  • Thanks to all the riders on the group ride for helping out and for not running me over 😉 I received immediate medical help. It sounded like there was quite a lot of logistical stuff going on I was not even aware of.
  • Thanks to the fire fighter and the neighbors who stopped and helped out!
  • Thanks to Dominic and Roger who came to the ER and made sure I was entertained for five hours!
  • Thanks to Tom for taking care of me after the crash! I cant thank you enough!
  • Thanks to Angie Rake for taking care of my face! That is huge having an expert to make sure I do not get any scars! (http://www.dakotavalley-oms.com/)
  • Thanks to Jon Falkowski for the dental reconstruction! You rock! http://www.thedentalhealthcenter.net/page/show/203662-dr-jon-s-falkowski
  • Thanks to Grand Performance for taking care of my broken bike.
  • Thanks to Penn Cycle for the recumbent bike getting me back in the game.
  • And of course, thanks to everyone for all your well-wishes! I am so grateful for all your help!

The planned ride of the Maah Daah Hey Trail in North Dakota this weekend was changed to a multi-day hike! I am excited!
  1. Wondering if that's the same kit you came in with?!! Glad to see you're recovering so quickly!

  2. Oh wow…glad you're ok and hope your recovery is fast and uncomplicated!

  3. Terrible news! Hope you heal up quickly. Reading your reports it's clear you've brought that Harley kit to new heights!

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