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Discussion Starter #1
Headed to work one morning last week at dark thirty on the usual county roads near my house devoid of cars but frequented by deer. I'm used to seeing them and usually slow down but don't get too aggressive on the binders which is a mistake.

Came over a small crest at about 60mph and saw him on the right shoulder, slowed and moved to the left lane as he moved onto the road. In typical deer fashion he just kept coming left. I slowed as much as I could (within my ability at that moment) and hit him dead center in his side. All the impact was straight on the nose of the bike and didn't push me to either side. Came to a stop and looked at the damage and rode home, only had 5 miles to go.

It's at the dealer now waiting to get a damage estimate. All appears cosmetic except for the magnesium? bracket the headlight assembly mounts to got cracked and pushed rearward. No impact to the forks as far as I can tell.

At that moment I felt like there was nothing else I could've done, but looking back I know that's nonsense. The front tire didn't lock so I know I could've broke harder. A quick swerve right might have missed him.

Like most mishaps, there was probably a half a dozen actions that could've helped me avoid this. It really shakes off the complacency, at least temporarily. Be safe and do all you can to stack the cards in your favor.

Crappy phone pics, forgot to take more in better light.
 

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Glad to hear you're okay. Don't beat yourself up about it; you did the best you could at the moment, given the circumstances. A swerve may have made things much worse for you. Having totaled a brand new bike (K1600GTL) before its first oil change, I too went through the mental exercise of what could have been done differently.

The "what-if" scenarios can drive you crazy if you let them.
 

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This is why I don't ride in the dark whenever possible... and that's doubly true now during the rut.

IMO anytime you hit a deer (on a bike) and can ride off uninjured you've won the lottery... glad to hear you dodged the bullet!
 

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What matters most is that you are ok! Essentially the same thing just happened to me. Except I didn't see the deer coming what so ever and the outcome is a bit more rough but bottom line is you are ok. Parts can be fixed, changed, waiting for my insurance response right now . . . I've been going back and forth in my mind what if this, what if that but to no avail, so sfoster's comments are dead on! Be glad you're ok!
 

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Tough to be in that decision once you realize the deer is in front of you. Wildlife, that is my # 1 hazard riding a bike because they are unpredictable, even when you see 'em. When I'm out riding in rural areas and notice the warning signs of deer or elk, especially those migration signs, I take notice. Cars and people are predictable, ride smart by avoiding the collision traps, pay attention by anticipating and you can avoid collisions. Cars are not that difficult to see.
 

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Deer are fickle. A truck driver friend of mine avoided a herd of deer only to have one turn around and run back into the side of his Freightliner breaking up the fiberglass. I was riding in a car with a friend of mine to the coast in the fog and I keep telling him to keep his eyes on the road and slow down and he basically ignored me and we ended up with an Elk through the windshield and part way into the front seat. If it hadn't been killed on impact. I would surely have ended up dead from thrashing. Another friend of mine was driving and we were going skiing and a deer stopped in the middle of the road mesmerized by the headlights as they do, and as my friend applied the brakes I was yelling at him "turn, turn now!" and he plunged right into the deer. Never heard me. It seems like it's not one of those things that you know what to do unless you have thought it out before. The thing to do is not assume they will stay put or move in a predictable manner. Leave a huge margin. Blind corners are the worst.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Glad to hear you're okay. Don't beat yourself up about it; you did the best you could at the moment, given the circumstances. A swerve may have made things much worse for you. Having totaled a brand new bike (K1600GTL) before its first oil change, I too went through the mental exercise of what could have been done differently.

The "what-if" scenarios can drive you crazy if you let them.
Thx, very true.

This is why I don't ride in the dark whenever possible... and that's doubly true now during the rut.

IMO anytime you hit a deer (on a bike) and can ride off uninjured you've won the lottery... glad to hear you dodged the bullet!
Right, if I want to ride to work its inevitable. Will just have to slow down.. Thx me too!

What matters most is that you are ok! Essentially the same thing just happened to me. Except I didn't see the deer coming what so ever and the outcome is a bit more rough but bottom line is you are ok. Parts can be fixed, changed, waiting for my insurance response right now . . . I've been going back and forth in my mind what if this, what if that but to no avail, so sfoster's comments are dead on! Be glad you're ok!
Sorry to hear, hope you weren't injured!

Glad you came out ok. Bike can always be repaired. So did you have venison steaks????
Thx. Haha I think he took off, looked for him briefly later in the day but didn't spot anything. Funny cause I plan on hunting this year for the first time and was telling my wife the night prior I'm surprised I haven't seen any bucks lately...

Tough to be in that decision once you realize the deer is in front of you. Wildlife, that is my # 1 hazard riding a bike because they are unpredictable, even when you see 'em. When I'm out riding in rural areas and notice the warning signs of deer or elk, especially those migration signs, I take notice. Cars and people are predictable, ride smart by avoiding the collision traps, pay attention by anticipating and you can avoid collisions. Cars are not that difficult to see.
Yep, I often rode to work on that road thinking sure its a possibility, but what are the chances? Different perspective now.
 

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A deer running across the road hit me right behind the forks. It’s head hit my knee and the fuel tank. Luckily I was riding a Harley as I think the extra weight helped keep me from going down. My leg went numb, I thought it was broken. Rather than stop and fall over I continued to work, a few miles away. I figured since bike parking was next to the entrance I could get help. On the way feeling returned and I found I still had movement. No damage other than a big deer head dent in the tank and a really sore leg. I’m always watching for them but I never saw the one that hit me . I rode in farm land all the way to work but I was on the edge of town when this happened.
 

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Except a few broken ribs, a collapsed lung, a minor hit on my head with a small bleed, a destroyed helmet, damaged gloves and Aerostich and a possibly totaled bike I'm just fine . . . ;)
Healing up and feeling better every day!
 

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What matters most is that you are ok! Essentially the same thing just happened to me. Except I didn't see the deer coming what so ever and the outcome is a bit more rough but bottom line is you are ok. Parts can be fixed, changed, waiting for my insurance response right now . . . I've been going back and forth in my mind what if this, what if that but to no avail, so sfoster's comments are dead on! Be glad you're ok!
This is probably the best feature of the Termi exhaust without dB killer - the deer hear you coming long before they can see you and generally they are moving off the road already when I ride by. That low frequency twin sound seems to propagate well in bad weather and through brush. To the OP, glad to hear you made it away without broken bones-
 

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I live in deer country. We also have elk. moose, and bear. I do not ride in the dark but have had close calls in the daytime with the car, the moto and on my bicycle. In forty years my wife has hit 3 deer and I have hit one. All with the car and all dawn or just predawn. It is hunting season here and animals are moving in unpredictable ways. My insurance company, State Farm, considers a deer strike "an act of God". No deductable.

I recommend that you hold your line and use maximum breaking. There is no way to predict how a deer will move. A swerve will make you less stable and put you at greater risk. That's what ABS is for. If one scampers off, watch for his buddy following closely.

A month ago a nearby family traveling in an SUV in the dark hit a bear on I-70. There were 7 people in the car, none wearing seat belts. Two young children and a grandfather were ejected and killed.
 

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I live in deer country. We also have elk. moose, and bear. I do not ride in the dark but have had close calls in the daytime with the car, the moto and on my bicycle. In forty years my wife has hit 3 deer and I have hit one. All with the car and all dawn or just predawn. It is hunting season here and animals are moving in unpredictable ways. My insurance company, State Farm, considers a deer strike "an act of God". No deductable.

I recommend that you hold your line and use maximum breaking. There is no way to predict how a deer will move. A swerve will make you less stable and put you at greater risk. That's what ABS is for. If one scampers off, watch for his buddy following closely.

A month ago a nearby family traveling in an SUV in the dark hit a bear on I-70. There were 7 people in the car, none wearing seat belts. Two young children and a grandfather were ejected and killed.
I've hit a deer on average once every 5 years since I started driving, and have clobbered at least one with every car I've owned. I do drive a lot (20k miles a year or more) so more opportunity... and in the winter commuting is dark going and dark coming.

So IMO being a bit nervous about deer on my bike makes sense... odds are that if I keep putting 14k miles a year on the multi I'm going to hit one within 6 or 7 years if I ride in the same conditions as I drive - hence avoiding dawn/dusk and generally avoiding night riding.

When I DO ride around dusk I see deer every single time (lazy NY hunters aren't doing their job), and I've had one near miss already (though that was middle of the day).

Stupid deer...
 
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Here's one. many years back... was riding my BeeEmm K-75s, girl on the back and loaded with luggage for a six month walk-about. Very solid machine, but very '80s era brakes, and we were motoring along on two laners in the Nevada desert. we were seeing open range signs all day, but never saw any cattle. Got cocky about that. Around dusk, we're running 85 or so on one of those dead straight desert bowl roads that just disappear over the hill miles ahead, like you see in the movies. Bliss. Then in my high beams i sense something faint, dark brown-ish blurring the lines of the road at the furthest edge of my light's coverage. Off throttle. A second later I'm all ohhshite simultaneously FULL ON the brakes, downshifting, honking and flashing my lights [try that sometime] to desperately try and roust a small herd of dark brown cattle that had decided to bed down for the evening - across the entire effin road!!! So, the sounds of tires howling at the limit, three-into-one Staintune, feeble horn, and the flashing headlight got them up and running left, but I was already on em when suddenly the back third or so suddenly broke rank, reversed and created a gap just as we ripped through it at some speed and came to a stop at least 25' beyond where they had laid been.

Astounded at what just transpired, and what hadnt, I just dropped the kickstand in the lane, we got off, removed helmets, and just laid down in the middle of the roadway and watched the stars come out for quite some time. No car lights were seen the whole time we were there.
 
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Large critters is the biggest reason I don't like to ride much during the dark. I've had enough close calls with roos to convince myself that my luck isn't going to hold out much longer.

The last time I had a run in with one was just on dusk on a quiet country road. I saw it bound out from the opposite side of the road and I didn't really have time to brake. I just moved over to the shoulder to make more room. The stupid fricking animal just kept coming across. As I neared it I stuck my foot out and smacked it on the nose as I passed at about 80kph. In hindsight I was fortunate. If I had have been in a car i would not have been able to avoid it. As it was, all I ended up with was shit stained pants and a racing heart.
 

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While dusk and dawn pose higher risks, I've often seen deer at all times of the day, particularly in wooded areas adjacent to roads.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Except a few broken ribs, a collapsed lung, a minor hit on my head with a small bleed, a destroyed helmet, damaged gloves and Aerostich and a possibly totaled bike I'm just fine . . . ;)
Healing up and feeling better every day!
Sorry to hear, hoping for a quick and full recovery....
 

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While dusk and dawn pose higher risks, I've often seen deer at all times of the day, particularly in wooded areas adjacent to roads.
This is true... though in my area (prime deer country - mixed field/forest) it's a LOT higher risk at dusk/dawn. For every deer I see on/near the road during the day I see 20-30 at dawn/dusk (at least)... if you factor in time spent in each of those conditions I'm probably 100-1000x more likely to have an interaction with a deer at dawn/dusk than during the day (per mile).
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Not looking good. Current estimate for parts alone is $4200. Interested to see what Foremost insurance will say when estimate is more than half the bike value...I did spot a new discounted 2013 on the dealer floor....
 
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