Downhill Muni Course - Your ideas, please.

Hi there.

Our muni group met up with Craig of the soon-to-be-amazing Cape Bike Park 365. The ski lift assisted bike playground is scheduled to open in July this year. Craig has asked us for input on one of the trails - essentially, he wants us to design a downhill Muni track that he will incorporate into the park.

So, what would you guys like to see in it? There is going to be North shore stuff (as part of the DH bike tracks), lots of dirt ramps, banks to ride up against etc. We are looking for ideas on specific types of obstacles that can be ridden and enjoyed by unicyclists (and bikers). For example, the skinny tree trunks should have a trail running alongside it so that less confident riders don’t have to walk across the log.

I have ideas for see-saws, round and flat skinnys, north shore elevations, gaps and drops, “rock gardens” (to weave through), rock gardens (to jump from rock to rock) and…?

The construction materials will be mainly what can be obtained from the (pine) forest. Plenty nails and rope, spades, water, dirt and manpower will be available, but I don’t think there will be much in the way of processed wood.

So please fire away with your ideas! if you have specific designs or pictures of your ideas, please post them here or PM/email me: {john-e [at] webmail [dot] co [dot] za}.

Oh, there will also be a “training” area for the bikers and a trials course. If you have any interesting designs/ideas for those areas, please include them:)

Thanks in advance!

Mate, I’m not into muni or DH as such, but HUGE props for running a high enough profile in Cape Town to be approached about this.

Good work lad!

He is apparently ‘down with the kids’ though :smiley:

But seriously, i’ve always wanted to try digging some dirt jumps suitable for uni, just small kickers with a downhill runout

Aye, I’ve been hanging out here too much.

It was really great to meet someone who doesn’t unicycle, but who is so enthusiastic about our sport. I was absolutely blown away when he offered to build what ever we wanted in a course and in a skills training area.

I have some ideas, the thinking cap is on, and the propeller is spinning :slight_smile:

Mate, sounds like a great life-skills opportunity to me. Kind of like summiting Mount KJ. Getonthatshit.

My weak spot is DH…the theme of April is Practicing Downhill Cokerspeed (pdc). Maybe just maybe I’ll be faster at RTL than I was at Uninam.

Great! maybe a swingy hang-brige would be nice. And tell them not to make helmets compulsory. Hope to be there soon.

that would be awesome! but could a uni even get enough speed to get airborne? maybe with a geared hub?

please help the non-expert Muni people! so for instance:

  • provide small drops, then bigger, bigger, bigger and so on so we can learn
  • same for skinnies: start with larger (and on the ground) then skinnier and higher
    -same for descents: simple then steeper, steeper and more difficult

having a progression in difficulties will entice people to learn: if too “hard” for beginners they will simply not enjoy the place. When a group plays there are different levels


a 29er can get quite some air off the right jump, especially if there’s a good dropoff after it. I’ve noticed that bikes really don’t have to go that fast to clear large jumps, if i have the time I’d love to play with the concept of dirt jump style course for unis.

Also what Mr. Bear said, a good progression of courses, particularly for stuff which is dangerous/scary.

The question isn’t “can a uni get airborne”, because we’ve all seen videos where unis “get air”. Gears aren’t necessary.

The question is, how does one design a jump that lends itself to “getting air”.

Ramps on flat ground aren’t super fun to ride (for myself) since one doesn’t get much time in the air. Either the ramp doesn’t get me far enough above the landing zone, or it’s steep enough that I lose all my momentum just riding up the thing.

As Kington et al have already said, a small ramp that ends at a drop-off is an ideal jump for wheels of all sizes: small enough that one doesn’t lose much momentum riding to the top of the ramp, and with a drop-off in elevation (for more air time) and grade (for a smoother landing).

If I were designing a muni course, EVERY negative grade transition would be preceeded with a ramp, kicker, log drop or somesuch other stunt. It’s just fun!

That ship has sailed.
Wear your brain-bucket.

I’d aim to have a super steep section including lots of large rocks (rock garden) a shute, some ledges and variation between narrow (to force you to be acurate in your reading of the terrain and executing it) and wider sections so people can choose their own path and difficulty. It is this sort of terrain that seperates Muni from bke DH terrain. Maybe then when some bke guys try the muni section they will appreciate what we do. I’m not such a fan of the jumps idea, or even structures- a bit to gimmicy for my liking.


I get air all the time when I ride. Just going over a rock that juts out from the single with a height of about 10 cm will give you air. Not a huge amount, but you will travel about 30 to 50 cm in the air if you have some decent speed. Now hitting drops and going off ledges at good speed can give you a lot of air if you are going fast. You can also get good air with either shorter ramps or ramps with a 20% incline rather than a 45% incline. All depends on your speed.


Thanks for all your input so far, i am making notes :slight_smile: keep the idea’s rolling in …

to make a uni specific course, super tight switchbacks would be kind of fun, you can half the turn radius of your typical bike switchback for a unicycle and have it still rideable.