I’ve been spraying before MUni rides to ward off Chiggers. Concentrating mostly on ankles and waistbands. But, even after spraying, I pulled a tick off me at our Louisville MUni Rendezvous.
Yesterday four MUCsters went MUniing deep in the southern woods near Sardis Lake, MS. Before hitting the trail, I sprayed with Deep Woods Off 40% Deet.
At trail’s end, one of our yutes (youths) found a tick crawling on him. I found one crawling on me at trail’s end and another weensy one when I got home.
We really went deep woods. So deep in fact, we lost the trail a couple of times and truly could have used a machette. (Sidebar: while stumbling through the thickets and brambles, our 13 yr old trooper never whined or complained. Not once. ).
I guess that even tho we found ticks on us, they did not imbed, so the spray was effective (?).
I’ve got some 100% Deet spray. But I hesitate to use is because I think it can cause Dain Bramage.
My old Boy Scout book says to wear long sleeves and long pants and tuck the pants into your socks… Not during a Southern Summer!! The book also has a chapter on Heat Stroke… But, I guess I’ll continue spraying until I can’t do simple math or remember my name.
We sure had fun on the trail (or lack thereof). I’m not giving that up.
I’m hoping that the coating of bug spray will also help keep the oils from our prolific Posion Ivy plants from reaching the skin. I have no science to support that. Just hoping.
I use Coppertone Bug and Sun and haven’t had any issues with ticks yet. I avoided the swimming hole at Otter Creek so i wouldn’t have to reapply (didn’t bring it with on the ride). The last time I went without it, I took the dog for a walk in the local preserve. I pulled five off of me and 40 off of her. They do take some time to embed, the DEET should make them avoid you not stop them from digging in. Tight fitting wear is also a good preventer, you don’t need long sleeves/pants.
The Tick, the munist’s bane. Nothing can kill them, save a razor sharp blade and fire. Water just slows them down. Slapping them like a mosquito annoys them. Crushing them between your fingers amuses them…
If I recall, it can take up to 18 hours before they find a place to dig in, so I just shower as soon as I get home to get rid of them… But I hates them! Yess, precious…
Also be careful handling ticks I got rocky mountain spotted tick fever from removing a tick from my dog and then possibly rubbing my eye or something. Its not as bad as lime disese but it was no picnic. I don’t know if you can get lime disease without the tic bitting you or not but be carefull and wash your hands if you have handled a tick.
Ben bug spray is the absolute best. Its a little on the pricy side, but it owrks awesome. But if you ever do get to feel sick after a ride, dont wait. Just get straight to a doctor, they can perscribe something to stop lyme before it gets in you. Its the same thing that makes it “go away”
As an outdoorsman (orienteer, fly fisherman, hunter) I have dealt with ticks for a long time. This time of year they are programmed to climb…they will climb grass etc., then move to your clothes when you brush past. Smarted thing to do is wear light long pants (nylon adventure pants are good). You can also tuck your pants into your socks to make yourself tick proof below the waist. If you tuck in your shirt, you are in good shape and you can use insect repellant on top as an extra measure. I have found many on my clothing using these procedures.
The most likely place to pick them up is when you pass through tall grass.
Tick checks when you clean up are important for areas you can’t see. I have had two attach to me and they glue their heads in place when they hook up…very hard to remove and the spot will itch for a long time after they are gone. If you are bitten…be sure to go to your doctor, they will give you a good antibiotic that will kill whatever they may have been carrying. You will take it for about two weeks.
I’ve also read that if you do get bit, when you remove it keep it in a jar or something (airtight, of course) so that if you do get sick the docs can figure out what it may have carried based on the species…
After doing lots of work in the woods on Cape Cod (Tick Heaven!) My refined strategy is this-
Pants Tucked into Socks
Some then use Duct Tape to seal the pants to the socks. (I’m not kidding)
I prefer Gaiters, which have been treated with permethrin. It’s nasty stuff, but it kills ticks that touch it DEAD. Do not put this stuff on your skin, but use it to treat fabric- shoes, cuffs, hat, etc.
Tuck Shirt in.
Light colored clothes- ticks are easy to see and less attracted to light colors. I went into some heathland out in Eastham one day- I wore khakis and the guiy I was with had on jeans. After the same walk, i had one tick on my pants, he had four or five!
Strip down butt naked as soon as you get back outta the woods and check, check, check. I do this in the bathroom stall at work if I have to put in any office time after getting back from the field. Also consider putting clothes in a hot dryer for a while, if you don’t intend on washing them before the next use- kills the ticks after 30 minutes or so.
I know the long pants tucked into socks deal works. But I just don’t think I’ll be able to ride hard for 2 hours in the 95-100 degree 90% humidity we have down here. You’ll find me collapsed out on the trail.
Do the little buggers mostly come UP from the grass? Not DOWN from trees? I’ve heard this. But they also like to jump/drop from evergreens like cypress and firs.
95% of the time we’re on a well defined trail. I have less problems when I can stay on the path. Its just that sometimes its hard to avoid a bushwacking adventure, whether voluntary or inadvertent.