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mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention
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Got myself a new MTB, and while I'll probably will spend a good chunk of time on gravel sections without a lot of vegetation, most of the MTB trails around have vegetation around.

I got this bike because I really don't trust the drivers where I live, but it seems that I'll have to deal with another type of danger instead. What do you do to minimize risk? Also for mid-Atlantic riders, do you know of people who picked up disease other than Lyme from MTB riding? A few days of doxy, while bad, really doesn't hold a candle to some of other scary tick-borne diseases.

Also, where should I go to begin learning how to ride the thing properly? I'm sure I'm aerobically strong enough (and have enough fast twitch muscles) to be competitive in local intro (and perhaps Cat-2) races, but I'm even more certain that I'll get dropped like a bad habit (or perhaps literally drop off the trail) due to lack of MTB skills.
Last edited by: echappist: May 17, 18 12:22
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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I guess I never really gave it much thought when I would go to the MTB trails in my area. I do however prefer to wear long sleeves (compression long sleeve typically with a t-shirt over it) and really long socks (that go above my knees). Reason being is to prevent random scrapes from branches as you pass by. Sometimes they get overgrown and the trail groomers haven't had a chance to trim them or move some branches out of the way.

I guess if you're really worried just use some bug spray with a higher concentration of DEET to keep away the ticks and carry a bottle to reapply if you're out there for awhile.
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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There was a mtbr.com thread about ticks. A lot had good things to say about this (Permethrin to be exact)...



Chris
*********************
"Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out,  shouting, holy crap, what a ride!!" - author unknown

Last edited by: Smil'n Hawaiian: May 17, 18 11:40
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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Take tick prevention seriously. I got two tick borne illnesses in 2010 and now have a knee replacement from damage done to my knee from Lyme. Doxy didn't do it for me. There are two camps on how to treat Lyme and they disagree. Plus many ticks carry more than Lyme. Best to avoid getting bite if you can.
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [KathyG] [ In reply to ]
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KathyG wrote:
Take tick prevention seriously. I got two tick borne illnesses in 2010 and now have a knee replacement from damage done to my knee from Lyme. Doxy didn't do it for me. There are two camps on how to treat Lyme and they disagree. Plus many ticks carry more than Lyme. Best to avoid getting bite if you can.
yikes. very sorry to hear that.

Out of curiosity, what part of the country is this? I hear that in the Southeast (and certain Midwest) states, they can simultaneously carry two pathogens.
Smil'n Hawaiian wrote:
There was a mtbr.com thread about ticks. A lot had good things to say about this (Permethrin to be exact)...


that's good to know. I actually just bought a thing of that, more for hiking though
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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The best part of mtb night around our house is checking her out for ticks later.
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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I live it a place without ticks. Works great for avoiding ticks.

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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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I'd say, stay on the road, but then last week, a freaking cotton mouth jumped at my ankle as we were riding by...dodged the mofo though.

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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [Smil'n Hawaiian] [ In reply to ]
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This! But also with a repellant on skin with DEET or picaridin. Permethrin provides a second layer of protection via your clothes. I would put it on everything especially your sock.

FYI my background is in infectious disease and I also run a travel clinic (i.e. vaccinations and prevention of infection for travelers). I recommend this for all my patients traveling overseas.
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [CCF] [ In reply to ]
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CCF wrote:
I live it a place without ticks. Works great for avoiding ticks.

Iceland? I'm not sure I know of a place in the lower 48 and the lower Canadian provinces without ticks

Francois wrote:
I'd say, stay on the road, but then last week, a freaking cotton mouth jumped at my ankle as we were riding by...dodged the mofo though.

surely not in the DC area?

btw, enjoy Hains when you get there. A dinky 3-mile loop, but so effective for so many forms of training. Doubtful i'd have bought a MTB had I had access to something similar. Though in retrospect, rumbling down the canal tow path on a MTB would be pretty nice, though I did ride it on my road bike a few times as well

hubcaps wrote:
This! But also with a repellant on skin with DEET or picaridin. Permethrin provides a second layer of protection via your clothes. I would put it on everything especially your sock.

FYI my background is in infectious disease and I also run a travel clinic (i.e. vaccinations and prevention of infection for travelers). I recommend this for all my patients traveling overseas.
thanks for your input

i'm pretty well stocked in DEET and Permethrin. Btw, suncreen over or under DEET?

Also, what other forms of diseases do ticks in the Northeast carry? Those southern buggers carry some really nasty stuff, one of which apparently makes one nauseous of eating beef, IIRC
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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Come from Australia, now in Canada (Clearwater BC).

Never worried about ticks in AUS. Prob won’t worry about them here. AUS also had paralysis ticks and those SOB that make you allergic to meat (I think I’d straight up kill myself if that happened).

It’ll be a rarity that I’ll stop when riding MTB, and never really touch foliage so risks are minimal.

I guess in AUS I was more concerned with snakes and shit, in Canada that’s turned to bears and cougars.

As for skills course, where you live? Canada it seems? If you’re anywhere near Clearwater make sure you bring your bike - I’ve raced MTB for 10 years or so, teach basic skills and track craft, let’s go riding!

Remember these four:

V - vision: look up along the trail, not at front wheel. 15 meters minimum If you can and scan back and forth to the trail. Prepare yourself for what’s coming.

P - position: all about your balance and stance on your bike. Any time you’re not actively pedaling, stand up, bend at knees, bend at elbows. Get semi-low. The bent limbs give you more room to move the bike under you, extra shock absorbers, lower center of gravity.

M - momentum: carrying appropriate speed makes most things easier. Try it. Roll at a large rock slowly, bet you fall over. Do it fast, bet you go straight over the top.

T - technique: last thing to work on. Involves stuff like getting front wheel up if needed, chiding better lines, how to go off small drops (don’t “lift” your bars, push them out away from you (when you’re in your powered stance) as your arms straighten, the bars will swing upward).

Do those first three and you’ll be better equipped to handle most stuff.

Also: show us the bike!! What’d you get?
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [Helliquin] [ In reply to ]
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Helliquin wrote:
Come from Australia, now in Canada (Clearwater BC).

Never worried about ticks in AUS. Prob won’t worry about them here. AUS also had paralysis ticks and those SOB that make you allergic to meat (I think I’d straight up kill myself if that happened).

It’ll be a rarity that I’ll stop when riding MTB, and never really touch foliage so risks are minimal.

I guess in AUS I was more concerned with snakes and shit, in Canada that’s turned to bears and cougars.

As for skills course, where you live? Canada it seems? If you’re anywhere near Clearwater make sure you bring your bike - I’ve raced MTB for 10 years or so, teach basic skills and track craft, let’s go riding!

Remember these four:

V - vision: look up along the trail, not at front wheel. 15 meters minimum If you can and scan back and forth to the trail. Prepare yourself for what’s coming.

P - position: all about your balance and stance on your bike. Any time you’re not actively pedaling, stand up, bend at knees, bend at elbows. Get semi-low. The bent limbs give you more room to move the bike under you, extra shock absorbers, lower center of gravity.

M - momentum: carrying appropriate speed makes most things easier. Try it. Roll at a large rock slowly, bet you fall over. Do it fast, bet you go straight over the top.

T - technique: last thing to work on. Involves stuff like getting front wheel up if needed, chiding better lines, how to go off small drops (don’t “lift” your bars, push them out away from you (when you’re in your powered stance) as your arms straighten, the bars will swing upward).

Do those first three and you’ll be better equipped to handle most stuff.

Also: show us the bike!! What’d you get?

Two more suggestions:

VISION - While looking up the trail, look where you WANT to go. See and acknowledge the existence of obstacles in/next to the trail, but don't focus on them. You go where you're looking. I've known many a new rider that have run into something they shouldn't have, just because they were staring at it.

POSITION and TECHNIQUE - Move while on your bike. People that ride on the road plant their butts on the saddle and just pedal, that doesn't work in mountain biking. As Helliquin said - get up out of the saddle with bent arms/knees to help absorb impact. Shift your weight as you go over obstacles, don't be afraid to put a knee out in a corner... as a friend once said, a mountain biker dances with their bike. Learn to track stand.

Try not to drown / rock the bike / hobby-jog
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [Smil'n Hawaiian] [ In reply to ]
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you can buy non diluted permethrin at any farm and fleet store. Usually around the barn and animal care area. I mix it in a spray bottle and put it on the dog and my pants when we go grouse hunting. Also works great for mosquito control around the deck...

Formerly MTBSully
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [MTBSully] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks to all for the helpful suggestions :)

It's def good to have at least in mind the things I should do before I take my first ride on real MTB terrain. I currently live in Northern NJ, and it's mostly rocky/ rooty singletracks, with a fair amount of gravel trails converted from old railroad tracks. Not a lot of sustained climbing, though I'm sure I can find that as well within a 2-hour drive.

The bike is a Giant Anthem Advanced SX. A bit absurd, as my current road bike is nowhere as nice, and I've been on the road bike for five years. Doubtful i'll get in as many hours on the MTB, but I wanted to buy it once and buy it right. Also was able to get a really good price on the bike, which was a 2015 model. My goals for now is just not to crash :) and hit the gravels trails, as it may be only way for me to get in uninterrupted intervals of extended duration around where I live.
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Re: mtb riders of ST, what do you do for tick prevention [echappist] [ In reply to ]
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I also live in Northern NJ and *every* time I came home from a MTB ride I would find at least one tick on our bathroom floor - it's white tile, so easy to see them. (I always made a point to get right in the shower as soon as I got home to prevent the suckers from biting.) I got so sick of finding them...then we added a dog to the mix and it got downright scary how many ticks we were finding. Sure DEET works, but it's poison and I really didn't want to douse myself and my dog with it every time we went outside. I did a lot of research and found reports of Rose Geranium Essential Oil for tick prevention. I'm a little hippy, but this seemed ridiculous, but I would dab it on my ankles, wrists and my dog's collar and tail...and wouldn't you know it...no more ticks. Sure, we smell a little floral, but hey, who cares, no lyme disease and whatever that other awful sickness is you get from the Lone Star Tick where your digestive system starts to reject everything.
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