Woman uses e-bike's turbo mode to escape pack of wolves

Three wolves standing on rock
(Image credit: Getty)

A German woman has called her e-MTB a lifesaver after using its boost mode to escape a pack of wolves.

Marie Schmidt, from Lower Saxony, was out riding on February 16 when she noticed horses behaving strangely in a field near the cycle path. As a horse owner herself, she began to wonder what might have spooked them, and spotted what she assumed was a domestic dog running alongside the fence.

When it was about 60 feet away, Schmidt realized that it was in fact a wolf that had suddenly taken an interest in her, and two more were close behind. Panicked, she turned around and rode as fast as she could.

"I alternately just yelled and cried," she told German news site Kreiszeitung.

Wolves can run at speeds up to 37mph, whereas e-bikes in Germany are limited to a to just 15.5mph with the motor engaged, However, many e-bikes also have a boost button that allow them to accelerate and hit that maximum speed more quickly. This is what Schmidt used to put some distance between herself and the wolves, though she said they came close enough for her to hear them panting.

As she reached the outskirts of her home town, the animals gave up the chase and eventually headed back into the undergrowth.

Handling a wolf encounter

In the US, wolf sightings are rare, and like all wild animals they prefer to avoid conflict with humans. The odds of an encounter are much higher if you are walking your dog, which the wolf will likely see as a prey animal.

If you do find yourself face-to-face with a wolf, running (or cycling) away isn't a wise choice, because it can trigger the animal's instinct to chase. Instead, try to make yourself look as large and intimidating as possible by holding your arms up (with your backpack if you have one). Keep facing the wolf so you can watch its behavior, and back away slowly.

For more advice, check out our guide what to do if you encounter a wolf on the trail.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.