You decide – Cattle Guards

by Arlyn on June 23, 2008

Which is better – crossing a cattle guard at 8mph while climbing or at 39.7mph on the descent?

I think it’s best at slow speeds.  My bike gets all hobbly-wobbly, the tires feel only half-inflated and I worry about falling over and disappearing into the grate who’s bars now seems to be more than 2 feet apart.  Plus, you get for one short second, the barest idea of what it might be like to ride the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix.

All you get from zipping over them at 39.7mph is a brief, “Oh god, I hope this works!” moment and then ZZIIP, you’re done.

But enough of my opinion, you decide :)

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Donald June 24, 2008 at 7:05 am

I think it just depends on your personality. I’ve ridden over them at a medium pace… that felt pretty solid. What’s that say about me… hell I don’t know.
Here’s my real concern: What if the cows catch on that all they need is a bike to escape? I think I found the next idea for a Chick fil-A commercial.

Tejvan Pettinger June 24, 2008 at 7:24 am

There is a climb in Yorkshire – Cow and Calf 15% with a cattle grid. I have to say I prefer the descent, just don’t sit on the saddle…

will June 24, 2008 at 8:30 am

Ah – a subject that I am an expert on.

Strangely – in France – these are called “barrieres Canadiennes” although I never heard this term growing up in Canada.

Note – the “nnes” ending means these things are Feminine – go figure!

They are everywhere in the Jura mountains – I prefer them going up – because unless I know it well – they are occasionally a bit dangerous at speed here.

will June 24, 2008 at 8:30 am
Barry July 29, 2008 at 4:22 pm

About 20 years ago, they figured out that you can paint black and white lines and the cows will not cross them. I swear you can feel the paint when you go over them. Is it true?

Arlyn Asch July 29, 2008 at 4:24 pm

Yeah, I’ve felt the paint. Not as much a butt-massage as the grates, for sure though.

I found no cattle grates in France, btw. Plenty of cows though. Maybe they’re better at fences than we are.

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