Last month, I was invited to go fourwheeling. I had only done it once before and that was a few years ago. It took me some time to get used to how to operate the one I was using.
I started out pretty well. We were on a paved forest road. We wanted to turn around. I put my foot down on the little foot break to put it in reverse, but the break didn’t hold. When I went to change the gear, my thumb hit the little accelerator and I took off over an embankment and the machine hit a small tree. I didn’t fly over the handlebars, but the machine was stuck in the mud.
My companion attached a rope between our quads and he pulled me out. I thought to myself, “There. I’ve had my accident. Now I can enjoy the rest of the day.”
I was SO wrong! I felt pretty insecure about turns. My companion’s quad was wider at the base than mine. I’m wider at the top. Every time I turned a corner, I thought I was going to tip over. Because of that, I tried to keep my speed down.
We found some back trails and took off down a hill. The dirt road was badly eroded. I was worried about tipping over there too. I slowed down more.
I went through mud puddles and over some pretty rough terrain. Despite being so cautious, I was having a good time. On one trail, there was a very round and smooth log laying to the side of the trail. It was probably no more than six inches in diameter.
My right rear tire went over the log and the log rolled out from underneath it. The quad lurched left and I went right.
I landed face down on the trail. The quad stopped a few feet away, unhurt. Immediately I felt my leg on fire and warm moisture inside my blue jeans. The blue jeans were unmolested. Somehow, underneath them, I opened up two gashes horizontally on my left leg.
I didn’t want to be lying face down in the dirt when my companion noticed I wasn’t behind him anymore, so I worked very hard at standing up. He came back and we decided we needed to go back to our base and tell the other man with us that I was hurt.
It took a while for me to get the courage to look at my leg. It looked pretty gruesome. After cleaning up the dirt and blood, I felt pretty weak and wobbly. My friend drove my truck part of the way home.
I was in bed a lot for the next three weeks. I tried working when I could, but it always made my leg swell up. I finally ended up getting antibiotics from the doctor. Today, it’s doing well.
People ask me if I plan to do get on one of those things again. I heard every horror story people could think of. To be honest, I remember the fun more than I remember the painful end.
For me, it was hours of “weee!!!” and one instant of Thud! I’ll probably do it again.