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Dealing With Deer Flies on the Run: A Bit of Yankee Ingenuity

Posted on August 12 2010

Adult deer fly, Chrysops callidusImage by Bruce Martin

I’m fairly well convinced at this point that runners will do just about anything to get in their miles. With this in mind, I wanted feature the ingenuity (and perhaps slight insanity, but who am I to talk after running 15 miles last weekend in toe shoes?) of a local New Hampshire running friend.

One of the challenges we face while trail running up here in the summer are deer flies. They’re a major annoyance whenever you enter the woods, and advice on dealing with them ranges from sticking a fern frond in your hat so that it extends vertically from your head (apparently they aim for the highest spot, and you get to look like a crazy person while you run), or the more common advice to simply “run faster.”

Well, my friend Jim just posted a picture on Facebook showing a little contraption that he made to deal with the flies so that he could continue to get in his runs on his favorite trails. He coated a plastic cup with some sticky stuff called Tanglefoot, pinned it to his running hat, and took off through the woods. Here’s what he had to say: “One “trolling deer fly trap” + one slow jog on the local trails = 50+ deer flies, DEAD!!! Silly, fun, and effective. I shall reclaim my beloved trails now, thankyouverymuch.” The photographic evidence is below – I’d love to hear what his wife had to say about this!

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