HELP: Proposal to BAN unicycles from the Golden Gate Bridge, in San Francisco, CA

Hi Rowan,

I admit that I find your comment bizarre in that they focus on the very odd exception rather than the more common experience. I do not find the points you have raised helpful to the discussion.

Would a typical unicyclist be a hazard to herself or anyone else on the Golden Gate bridge? No!

Is there some bizarre circumstance I can imagine where unicycling on the Golden Gate could be a problem? Of course! I have a vivid imagination.

Is that in any way relevant to devising rules for safe behavior on the bridge walkway? No!


Scott, do you think calling people idiots is helpful to the discussion? Slow down and read things over a couple of times before typing. Keep breathing. You are not in a fight you are online on the internet. When writing letters you need to be diplomatic, and that includes here as well.

I can empathise as to why you would be very passionate about this issue as it feels like an attack on unicyclists, but to respond with attacks will be the least productive method of resolving the situation. So I urge people writing letters to think twice before sending while angry.

I guess it depends on whether or not they are idiots?

I can only assume that this was a post to try to belittle scott and to avoid the points that countered your ridiculous comments.

@ Rowan…
Your points of view are quite right!
I’m so happy that you live on the other side of this planet…
so the chance of meeting you in person is zero!

@ John Foss…
Hope that I can enjoy/promoting/ riding uni as much as you did all those years even I started just 6 years ago!

@ all the others in this community
Enjoy riding at any opportunity…it only gets better in time!! (PR!):smiley:

To address some points of contention:

How fast are unicycles? Fastest speed listed is 29 mph. On flats, average speed for 36er and gunis are around 15. Ungeared unis are about 12.
How fast are humans? Usain Bolt has the record at 27.79 mph. A full-marathon winner will sustain 10-12 mph. An average marathon runner does about 6 mph.
How fast are bicycles? I’ve done 85 mph downhill on a mountain. I’ve sustained 30 mph on some very long rides. The fastest recorded serial-production bike is 130 mph. It would appear that unicycles are fast, about as fast as humans, which relatively speaking, isn’t fast at all.

Can unskilled riders navigate the GGB? I consider myself unskilled, and can ride a mile. The GGB span alone is 4200 ft. Add in the portion not included in the span, plus access points, and the trip across is over a mile. There and back is over two miles. Add in the long uphills and downhills, and pedestrian and bike traffic, and I can’t see myself, or any unskilled rider, attempting the trip.

Can the tiniest bumps upset a unicycle? Sure. They can upset a walker, too. And since the walker probably isn’t wearing any safety gear, whereas most long-distance unicyclists do, the walker is much more apt to get injured in a fall. But if you go back to my skilled rider argument, the tiniest bump isn’t likely to cause problems with riders skilled enough to navigate the GGB travelling at slow speeds.

Brakes are not needed on a unicycle, as John stated. They are an option, again, for advanced skill levels.

Can unicycles coast? Yes, again, at an advanced level. Its a performance trick, much like bikers doing wheelies, stoppies, standing on their seat. Walkers can do tricks too, like somersaults, hand stands, and walking backwards. Heck, even drivers can do tricks, like drifting, driving in reverse at traffic speed for long distances, smoking the rubber off their tires. None of the above will be likely found on a crowded bridge.

John’s statement was for uninformed people with a bias against unicycles. I love unicycling, and hope it isn’t banned bacause a group of uninformed people with a negative bias decided to go with their own opinions instead of listening to the opinion of the professionals that they hired. At least allow unicycles for now, and if they become an issue in the future, address the issue then. Unicycling being banned anywhere is a shame when its because of uniformed bias or misinformation. Or, maybe they are informed, and still have a negative bias. If that’s the case, its up to us to somehow convince them otherwise.

It’s a good thing we have rowan here to make sure john foss stays honest. We would all probably be misguided and misled without him.

On a serious note, sending an email to let them know how I feel about their bad judgement.


Whatever happened with this? Did they ban unis?

No, I think after the backlash (not just against unis, also against speed limits for bikes) they went back to the drawing board. It’s been quiet since then.

Yay… that almost makes it worth going there just to ride the bridge :slight_smile: