Trapped and rear-ended

The sign in the Antelope Island State Park visitors’ tollbooth indicated no refunds would be given due to bugs. How bad could the bugs be? It didn’t take long to find out.

We went to Antelope Island State Park to watch birds. It’s an island in the Great Salt Lake of Utah, where it’s possible to see hundreds of bird species according to The woman at the tollbooth gave us a bird list. She suggested we look for birds on the 7-mile causeway. Just pull over to the side of the road, she advised.

We made a stop or two, pulling well off the main road and putting our flashing lights on. Then the bugs started to gather in force. We dashed into our car. Now we were trapped.

Everywhere we looked, swarms of midges swirled through the air.

In the safety of the car, we picked up our binoculars and scanned the lake. If we looked past the midges, we saw three wading birds on the nearby shore.  In a flash we felt the impact. We’d been rear-ended as we sat in our bright yellow car with its flashers going!  At the driver’s side of the car appeared a bicycle rider saying over and over, “I’m sorry.” He was bleeding from cuts by his eye, his tooth was chipped, but he was standing up. We checked him to make sure that he should be standing, not sitting. OK.

We went to the rear of the car. There were several scrapes on the car with one large dent centered on the rear hatch “Prius C.” His bicycle had sheared apart on impact.

How did the accident happen? The bicyclist was so bothered by bugs that he had kept his head down as he pedaled on the causeway, never looking up, never noticing our (very bright!) yellow car.

We flagged down a car, which happened to be a park employee who knew just what to do. It was telling that when help arrived, he wore a full net vest and head covering for protection from the bugs.

The bicyclist was driven to an Urgent Care facility, and we decided to leave Antelope Island.

We headed north, and, as we drove into the mountains, we didn’t see any bugs or bicyclists.

Should we have taken that warning about bugs in the park more seriously?



May 2017

About simpletravelourway

Beth and Joe enjoy simple travel.
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11 Responses to Trapped and rear-ended

  1. leggypeggy says:

    Oh what a horrible mishap. Just glad everyone was okay.

    • Yeah, especially horrible for the poor cyclist who really hurt himself, but, as he repeated again and again, it was entirely his fault. We hope he heals quickly and doesn’t make that mistake again. However, we’ll have to pay to repair the car.

  2. Diana says:

    I’ve also been rear ended by a bicyclist, it’s definitely a weird experience. Everyone always looks at me strangely when I say that. Glad he (and your car) were okay.

  3. No wonder they gave a warning at the entrance. I hope the cyclist was okay and your car was easily repaired.

  4. plaidcamper says:

    An unusual experience for all concerned…happy to read it wasn’t too bad injury-wise, but you have to wonder what the cyclist was thinking in the first place? (I’m pro-bike, but pro-common sense even more!)

    • Yes, Joe is cyclist too. Commuted by bike to work for decades. Always followed the traffic laws and avoided distractions, like not looking where he was going. Even so, he still got into a few bad accidents, e.g. “Where’d that black ice come from?!!! Crash!”

  5. There is nothing like swarms of insects as a distraction. He must have been really pedalling hard to inflict that damage. Had it been me and Ruth on the bikes you probably wouldn’t have even been aware that we had bumped into you. Your question would have been “were those cyclists or statues”? Annoying though.

    • We know what you mean. As we say, he was “hammering” (those pedals) with his head down and “making good time” until that last fraction of a second. We hope he is “on the mend” and will be enjoying cycling again with head up.

    • We know what you mean. He was “hammering” (those pedals) and “making good time” right up to that last fraction of a second. We hope that he is “on the mend” and will soon enjoy cycling again, albiet with head up.

  6. iShorr says:

    Sounds like it! Glad everyone was OK…

  7. Now I understand the expression ‘That bugged me.”

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