Rubber Side Up Tip Sep 18, 2014


Getting rad has its price, especially on a MTB and one of the ways to learn you and your bikes limitations is to fall. Here in Texas, that usually means sharp limestone, or brittle, dry mesquite trees are waiting for you on the ground.

One pointer I always try to keep in mind is to always ride with a clean bottle. That just means, no hydration mix or juice. Having a bottle with mix and a bottle with just plain water gives you a means to wash a fresh wound out immediately, rather than waiting to get back to the car or your home.

Wash the wound throughly. Remove any rocks, sand, debris and let it dry. Cover it if you can or just let the air dry it out. Sometimes, even putting sunblock on a fresh wound will sterilize it even more – assuming there’s alcohol in it. Otherwise, carry a small first aid kit in your pack.

  • Last summer, when I was 22 miles away from home, I endo’d on a tree root while doing 18 mph on my CX bike down some single track in Chicago’s forest preserves. Gashed up my knee and leg pretty good. I cleaned out the dirt with my clean bottle, and had to ride home with my leg bleeding into my shoe. By the time I made it home, my leg had, like, clotted into this big red frog-like slime. In the shower, I scrubbed it off and unleashed a water balloon’s worth of dammed up blood, followed by that crisp burning of water on a wound. Still have scars from it, and my girlfriend thinks there’s still dirt in there, too. She’s probably right.

    • I’ve had dirt, small rocks and even glass mysteriously eject itself from my hands, elbows and knees before because I was too lazy to scrub… the body is an amazing thing!

    • Micheal Boedigheimer

      Damn, I kinda want to see that.

      • I think I have pics. I’ll dig around.

    • Jake Kruse


      • Na, North Branch trail in Morton Grove.

  • Trenton South

    Last September I ripped my knee open night riding with my Bro’s. I went over the handlebar and Ripped my Knee open ( I should’ve went to the ER but my Broke Ass couldn’t Afford that thought) so we Sterilized it with Bulleit Whiskey we drank before our ride. Always keep a stash of Whiskey in your car, or peroxide.

    • jon

      And when it gets infected, rather than go to the doc for antibiotics, you can pour table salt into it. Sucks the infection right out, its amazing. Had to do this on my hand last year after a tumble into a ditch (trying to avoid a salmon rider). Sure, it stings, but compared to the pain of the infection (which was spreading up my wrist) the sting was nothing. And yea, it left a nice scar

  • Just took a tumble a couple of days ago on a gravel trail outside philly. Definitely glad i had some water on hand to rinse out the scrapes. All bandaged up now (+peroxide and washing and all that), hoping they don’t get dumb infected!

  • Patrick Taylor

    Bactine Spray in the saddle bag. If it’s on a very tender spot cuts down on the immediate pain and disinfects.

  • jonathan schaller

    Never leave home without one:

  • Jamie McKeon

    In the ER I had seven local anesthetic needles in my face after a crash a few years back, it was in order to clean the small parts of gravel out from around my upper cheek & eyebrow. felt bizarre but when the doc showed me the shit he pulled out of there i sure was grateful. They interestingly didn’t use any anesthetic for my arm, shoulder or knees, just the face. The scars still show where individual bits of road were.

    worst part is that i ripped my PiNP jersey… scars are badass.

  • stateofnonreturn

    Yup, just finishing my anti-biotic pills after my knee wound got infected from not cleaning on time. Thanks for the tip about washing it up right away.

  • Александр Андреевич

    I’m use “Streptocid alba” known as “sulfanilamide” in 2gramm pack. Really small and light =)

  • Jim Holland

    You don’t carry medicinal bourbon?