Dealing with deer

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by 96R1100GS, Apr 25, 2014.

  1. 96R1100GS

    96R1100GS Adventurer

    Apr 17, 2014
    Tucson, Arizona
    I livein rural Virginia and have just gotten back into motorcycling. I have hit two deer with my car and am worried about hitting one on the bike. The only solution I can come up with is to slow WAY down when on a back road where deer may be lurking. I do kill and eat them too. Any thoughts?

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  2. packerbacker

    packerbacker Been here awhile

    Feb 19, 2014
    Woods of WI
  3. TexaNate

    TexaNate Been here awhile

    Jul 22, 2012
    The Hague
    Ride slower - that's the only thing that's guaranteed to help. Avoid dawn and dusk as well, and ride especially slowly when you're near woods or blind shoulders.

    Deer whistles are $6 a pop. When you think about it, if they only have a 1% chance of saving you $600 (and/or a .1% chance of saving you $6,000), they're worth the investment.

    GBAUTO Bambi Assassin

    Sep 18, 2013
    Young Harris, GA
    I don't think that there is any guaranteed way to prevent from smacking 'Bambi' while riding. They are all over the place where I live and I have had an encounter with a kamikaze doe on the SV. It was about 30 minutes after sundown and she bolted directly in front of me in a blind corner.
    I don't ride after dark anymore-that's the only way I can increase my odds because I have a better chance of seeing them and making some evasive actions.
    Best advice I can give is to kill all of them...with extreme prejudice.:D
  5. bananaman

    bananaman transcontimental

    Jun 20, 2007
    Lights! Bright lights. It's easy to wire a set of PIAA's and a set of Hella's. I always used to have the Hella's aimed to brighten the shoulders, and the PIAA's to brighten the road. The 1100GS has more than enough alternator power to keep up with the load.

    I wired mine on a fused relay directly to the battery, with separate handlebar mounted switches. I used the headlight as my simple On through the relay.

    You can make a light bar with a $15 piece of aluminum stock. There are two screws under the headlight assembly on your GS. Perfect for mounting the bar. Just try to keep the lights close enough to the center of the bike so that when you drop the bike, the crash bars protect them.

    I had great luck with these lights, until I changed the relay and had them turn Off with the Dim switch.

    From now on I'm leaving them On unless I'm in heavy traffic. In heavy traffic I'll turn off the PIAA's.
  6. manic mechanic

    manic mechanic Been here awhile

    Aug 31, 2011
    up nort' somewheres
    I've hit 3 deer with bikes, hopefully no more. All were in daytime. ATGATT helped. but broken bones still can happen. The critters can come out of anywhere besides forests, such as overgrown ditches, farm fence rows, etc. Be aware, not paranoid. Keep scanning using peripheral vision for movement. And remember, if you see one, look for others. Right now is a good time to see deer moving, as they're starting to drop fawns. The worst time is in fall, during the rut and when harvesting is occurring. Best advice is to just keep on the lookout.

    And it's not just out in the woods and farms, we have deer strikes here in town. I've had close calls on a 4-lane residential boulevard.
  7. Balootraveler

    Balootraveler Been here awhile

    May 3, 2009
    mississippi of the west.
    Bright lights and ride slower, deer are out anytime day or night just be aware of the ambush spots.
  8. Auto-X Fil

    Auto-X Fil Been here awhile

    Feb 17, 2013
    Montrose, PA.
    Scan the woods and slow down. That's all you can do, other than bright lights if your stockers are a little weak. I whacked one last summer - I was going slower than normal because it was prime deer time and location, so I bumped it without going down. It only cost me $300 in plastic. Another 10-20mph and to could have been much worse.
  9. khager

    khager Long timer

    Sep 8, 2007
    Granbury, TX
    Yeah, we have had some deer strikes in town too. Damn things are everywhere!

    What I don't understand is why deer hunting is so regulated. It should be open season, year round with no limits. Not looking to make them extinct, just get their #'s down to a maneagable size. There are more around now, than before the first Europeans arrived, many moons ago.
  10. ThatGuy

    ThatGuy Brownie

    Oct 27, 2006
    Anchorage, Alaska
    After riding up here and then riding in the midwest I am not used to scanning for them. Almost took one straight one a few years ago, lucky for me he moved at the last second. On the other hand we have moose and I have learned to scan now. :lol3
  11. Flynch

    Flynch Been here awhile

    Nov 9, 2009
    Southern Indiana
    I've hit two on a motorcycle, (and I quit counting in four wheeled vehicles,) I live in old abandoned farm country which are now thick wooded baited deer farms.

    Lights, Lights, Lights and learn the deer routes, for 20 years the deer on my farm have followed the same routes, crossed at roads, followed the same paths and bedded down at the same times, and changed those times only during weather changes...and deer never travel alone, if there is one, there's probably three.

    Watch where the out of town hunters bait deer to, deer will change their pattern for the sweet flavored baits and grass seed they use to draw the deer to their stands.

    But all of that goes out the window during rut. Both deer's I hit were during rut, both in areas where they usually didn't cross, both at full speed run. One daylight, one early evening; Actually rut had started a few weeks earlier and I noticed the deer's changing patterns but it was bow hunting only and the deer were not panicked, but once gun season started, the deer started running. I should have waited a few weeks to ride after the majority of gun hunters had gotten their Bucks, and the deer would have settled back into their usual activity.



    Rotten eggs mixed with hot pepper will keep them out of your gardens and seedlings.
  12. Homey

    Homey Been here awhile

    Aug 24, 2007
    California Central Coast
    You guys have it all wrong. It's really the government that's behind the rash of deer attacks. Clandestine government agents hide in the bushes with sophisticated, top secret, deer cannons and wait for unsuspecting motorists to drive by. When least expected they shoot deer at them with alarming speed. It's big brother at his worst!! Protect yourself!

    btw, we've tried rotten eggs/hot pepper and a litany of other home made anti-deer recipes and they still eat my wives plants. If they are hungry they'll eat anything. The Rottweiler is the only thing that keeps them out of the yard now...
  13. Veteran Noob

    Veteran Noob Astoundingly Unremarkable

    Jul 15, 2012
    I don't know why but 4 or 5 years ago (after 25 years of riding) I developed an overwhelming fear of hitting a deer. I understand the risk, and have always understood the risk but I now have this primal fear, completely disproportionate to the actual risk; to the point of being irrational (degree of fear, not the actual respect for the risk). Just sitting here thinking about and my mouth goes dry, my stomach turns and I get that super antsy feeling, like I've downed about a dozen red bulls. I'm convinced if I ever buy the farm on a bike it will be due to a deer strike. I can deal with it (though I wish it would pass), I've given up riding from dusk to dawn, but I hope it doesn't progress to other potential dangers.
  14. Danjal

    Danjal Insert wit here.

    Oct 9, 2011
    I prefer to blind the bastards. :evil

  15. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

    Mar 18, 2007
    Begin Op Zoom
    Wheelie over them. :1drink
  16. YosemiteCruiser

    YosemiteCruiser Banned

    Mar 18, 2014
    Wherever you go, there you are...
    Slow down, keep good eye out, try to be ready, that's about it.
  17. Oldebonz

    Oldebonz Been here awhile

    Nov 24, 2012
    Deal with many in SW Ohio,don't breathe a sigh of relief if you miss oneĀ….they usually have others following,usually a bigger Buck during mating season chasing several does.Been there done that thank God in a Dodge minivan at 55 mph that nearly totaled it(totaled the buck though!)Had a good friend killed by a deer hit by oncoming car that threw it through his windshield and kicked him in the head while struggling with it.Shit happens,deer are as dangerous as texters and drunks.Be careful out there!
  18. bwalsh

    bwalsh Long timer

    Jan 15, 2009
    I've had real close encounters with three deer on two different bikes. One early morning and two well after dark. The early morning one was the closest call as I found deer hair on my saddle bag after I got to my destination. That was close!
    The last one jumped out from behind a Cedar tree and stopped right in my path of travel. First time I've ever locked up a front wheel. Luckily when the tire started squealing on the asphalt it scared the deer and it took off. If not I would have nailed it. There was no way to know it was behind the tree until it was in the road.
    Airport runway lights wouldn't have helped in that situation...and many other similar situations in Virginia where there is little to no shoulder and the roads are tree lined. Not much you can do except ride a little slower and be ready to get on the brakes.

    I've hit three deer with my truck...but it has a big winch bumper on it. Bent the license plate a little... My friends keep saying I aim for them with the truck. :D
  19. Bowhunter

    Bowhunter Single Trackin' & Stick & Stringin'

    Apr 10, 2012
    Van Etten, NY
    Most people only think that you should start looking out for deer in the fall when it's their breeding season, but this time of the year can be worse with the mothers running around trying to keep an eye on their newborn's. My buddy hit four deer last year commuting to work with his truck. Luckily he didn't have his skinny bike or he might be six feet under.
  20. PlainClothesHippy

    PlainClothesHippy 2X nominee for the Flying Fickle Finger of Fate

    Jan 19, 2014
    Lancaster County, PA
    My personal experience is that it's best to wear camo. I know when I put on camo deer won't come within 300 yards of me, even if I'm dead silent and sitting still.

    Seriously, deer are the main reason I avoid night riding, but dawn and dusk are the worst times. I've always wondered if deer whistles work.