Distance Unicycling in Los Angeles – Jump right in… the "NightRiding" is fine!!

Over the past number of weeks, I have been testing the waters on a new aspect of our beloved sport. It has surely increased my mileage… I’m doing nearly 80 miles/week now!

First, a little background… About a month ago, in my car, I waited through three green lights as an ocean of bicyclists passed by at about 11pm. Why did I have to wait? There was an LAPD officer parked on the crosswalk in front of me. No, not a funeral motorcade for a cyclist… quite the opposite. Every rider was smiling ear-to-ear, many waving and thanking motorists for waiting, and all obviously having a good time. I’d heard about “crank mob” type events that include hooligans that tag and such, but this was different. They weren’t a “mob” or gang, but a group of cyclists just seeking a good time. Of course, you may share my sentiment at the time… “all that fun, and no unicyclists?.. REALLY!”

I was drawn to this culture and the idea of night riding, and went to a couple of board meetings of one of the organizing bodies of these rides. Since then, I’ve gone on a couple of rides per week, and had a fantastic time mixing it up with the 2-wheelers on my 36’er uni. There are actually about 4-5 of these types of rides (ranging from 50-1000 riders) per night in LA, although just a few per week that I consider to be unicycle-friendly (I’ve got some stories to tell…heheh)!!!

The larger events roll slower… 12-14mph averages which is perfect for a 36’er at any distance. They usually range from 10-30 miles, with a number of stops. They “roll” at times ranging from 7pm to 11pm depending on the event. A good example of the perfect ride was a couple of weeks ago. DaveyKim and I “rolled” with about 300 cyclists from a park at the intersection of Culver and Venice boulevards at about 8:30pm and rode for 6 miles, enjoyed a live band (outdoors), and repeated the above for three more legs and bands. 24 miles total, decent entertainment, and a great night out in LA.


  1. I want to promote the single wheel revolution – putting the “wheel reduction act” into motion…lol
  2. BUILDING A LOS ANGELES UNICYCLE CLUB - I would love to find a core group of guys who want to do distance regularly and promote the sport with me! These rides may be a good starting point.
  3. Cool weather (less sweat) and zero sunburn risk!
  4. A great way to see hidden LA… there are things you see at night that you would NEVER see by the light of day
  5. I can do it within my schedule. During the day I have four teenage daughters and a wife and where and when to ride is a huge challenge.
  6. These events are free!

UPCOMING RIDES AND LINKS. I will be doing all of these. Feel free to send me a PM and we can discuss transportation/carpooling if you’re interested.

3/20/2011 and annual: LA MARATHON CRASH RACE
-Likely turnout of 500+ riders
-Closed course
-One-way course - carpool/public transportation info available upon request
-Near Dodgers Stadium - assemble @3am, roll at 4am

3/25/2011 and the last Friday of every month: LOS ANGELES CRITICAL MASS
-The largest group ride in LA
-LAPD does rolling road closures (motorcade style)
-Wilshire/Western - assemble at 6:30, roll at 7:30pm

4/2/2011 and monthly - schedule announced in advance: FMLY RIDE
-Ride ALWAYS includes bands at stops (see my “perfect ride” example above)
-About 20-30 miles total
-Live music at every stop
-Culver/Venice boulevard at “Crank Mob” park - Assemble at 7:30pm, roll at 8:30pm

Here’s a few that I haven’t committed to yet but are unicycle-friendly that I’ve chatted with organizers about…

3/18/2011 (tonight) and third Friday of every month: RIDE WITH NO NAME
-25 miles total
-2 stops
-Meets at 8pm and rolls at 9pm Third and Traction (downtown LA Arts District)

-Meets at the RiteAid at Sunset and Fairfax at 7:30pm every Thursday
-A very nice gal that goes by the name of Kat organizes and leads this ride… routes vary

-Meets at Crank Mob Park and rolls at 9pm every Tuesday

I’ve left out ones that I’ve done that were and are a bad idea… like I said… stories to tell, heheh.

PM me for contact information, and ride on!

-David Howard

HEY NOW… Come to think of it… that would be a cool name for a Los Angeles Unicycle Club…



Hi David,

I noticed that you have four teenage daughters. Do they come on rides with you? If so, I might be able to convince my teenage son to come along on a ride.



Scott… that’s something that I would love, but they haven’t shown enough interest (just occasional weekend efforts to learn)

Looking forward to the Marathon Ride with you guys tomorrow morning!


the rides in la sound awesome. how many unicyclist are involved at this time ? I would love to try this but probably need a little more stamina for anything over 10 miles. are their breaks along the way for the unicyclists. do you know of any other places unicyclist get together to practice freestyle uni ? I have been riding 4 to 5 days per week for 3 years and love it.
appreciate any info thanks scott 48 buena park ca.

Hi Unisurfer… glad you found the forums.

In my opinion, that’s the only way to get through these rides with any degree of speed or comfort is a 36" wheel (or a geared uni). What do you ride?

hi david,
I have four unicycles , but i spend most of my time riding my coker and i have a nimbus 24" trials. What do you ride ?

I’m on a Nimbus Nightrider 36’er with Magura brakes, and also have a classic Miyata 24" and a more recent Torker 24" 48spoke with 100mm crank. Finding myself in the saddle on the 36’er almost exclusively.

Great ride today! Ended up at about 32mi total as they “rolled back” to effect a full 26 mile marathon ride with a rolling start. Great job Scott Ttocs and Peter! Really enjoyed riding with you both!

Hey David,

Thank you for the invitation. It was a lot of fun, and we had MUCH less rain than the runners!


Props from the LAFixed crew…

Scott and Peter;

There are quite a few postings at www.lafixed.com regarding our participation in the LA Marathon event the other night… all props.

You can find the thread (long) at http://www.lafixed.com/discussion/723/wolfpack-hustle.-the-la-marathon-crash-race-ii/ if you want to look, but the most recent one came from one of their most active members:

Screen Name: (.)(.) aka-boobs
“… -Cheers everyone, Az. Ca. Ny. Tx. Sd. Or. Ne. Fl. Ut. Hi., and expexialle UNICYCLE PELOTON! That was my fav part.”

btw… the LA Critical Mass is this friday! :wink:

Fmly ride is back!

Goto http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=146970145365978 for details!

April 2, 2011. FMLY RIDE, a very unicycle-friendly event!
-Ride ALWAYS includes bands at stops
-About 20-30 miles total
-Stops every 5-6 miles, Live music at every stop
-Culver/Venice boulevard at “Crank Mob” park
-Assemble at 7:30pm, roll at 8:30pm

will be there!

I will be coming with my 29!
Personally, the last FMLY ride event was a once in a lifetime event. Everyone was super friendly, the night ride was beautiful (and tiring for me), music was good, and the vibe was great! Lets get more uni riders to spread the 1 wheel love!!

3 days from today!
lets do it

A good time had by all once again. four bands, 20 miles, and many smiles.

Thanks for coming out DaveyKim. Once again, showing your fortitude on the 29’er!!

Y’all join us sometime!!! Ciclavia is next Sunday at 10am in Downtown LA… see you there?!!