Hill climbing, again...

After 6 months of hard practise, I can finally climb
the hill in front of my house with > 90% probability
of staying on the uni.

I’ve moved my focus to the hill down the street which
is longer and steeper (> 14% grade). I suspect that
this may take the next several months of practise.

Eventually, I’d like to be able to go to San Francisco
and do some of their hills – e.g., some of the cable
car routes !

I’m learning a lot in the process, and for those of you
who live in the flats – you don’t really know how to
uni until you can uni some steep hills!

The main difference between the uni and the bike
is that when you get tired on the bike, you can go
slower, but when you get tired on the uni, you fall
over.

I’m going through tires at a rate of one per month,
because of the two bald spots that develop.

I go up two hills every day that are 14-15% grade. They’re both about a block long. I can do them without holding onto the seat handle if I want, but I don’t want.

A couple of weeks ago was the first time I Cokered up the toughest one I ever do on a bicycle. It’s a four block climb at something greater than 15% for most of the distance. I had to turn down the street at the second block and ride down a half block and turn around to catch my breath.

There is also a switchback road I have taken a few times from Golden Gardens Park (sea level) to the Loyal Heights bluff (350 feet) which is about 3/4 of a mile or a mile long. Hill climbs are rewarding. San Francisco would be a tough place to ride.

Riding in and out of Georgetown every day, I tackle a pretty difficult hill - going up in the morning and down in the evening. I don’t know what the grade is, but its a block over from the famous “Exorcist Stairs” - pretty freakin steep. It’s got me wanting to do more hills.

Riding San Francisco would be incredible. I would probably buy a brake before doing that because I’d be afraid of not being able to stop for an intersection. But, I would love to do that sometime.

Re: Hill climbing, again…

On Tue, 17 Sep 2002 20:18:02 GMT, hbaker1@pipeline.com wrote:

>The main difference between the uni and the bike
>is that when you get tired on the bike, you can go
>slower, but when you get tired on the uni, you fall
>over.
Working on better balance is one of the issues in practicing uphill.

>I’m going through tires at a rate of one per month,
>because of the two bald spots that develop.
Do you rotate your tire? I.e. when you have two not-too-bad bald
spots, release the pressure, push the bead to the centre of the rim,
then rotate the tyre a quarter turn with respect to the rim, then
re-inflate (and seat the bead properly). Next time, do a 1/8 turn
(either direction). Last time, again a 1/4 turn, either direction.
Then you will have 8 bald spots, which is probably close to even wear,
and you need a new tyre.

Klaas Bil

If you had this signature, I have forged it.

Re: Hill climbing, again…

Hills are great. My ride home has a 18% grade (that I can make on Coker with
140mm cranks). Last Sunday I rode the “Great San Francisco Bike Ride” with
Gary and Scot, all on Cokers. I was able to climb the “King of the Hill”
Taylor St climb which is 16% for a long time on both laps - but it was hard.
The cheers and horns and insanity both times when I made it was just crazy!
It felt like the Tour de France or something. That was with 165mm cranks. On
a 24" with 170 or longer cranks you can go up amazing stuff.

On tire life, you should rotate your tire before it gets completely bald. If
you rotate 60 degrees you can probably do it twice. One tire a month
probably means you are riding REALLY a lot or you are thrashing on turns
etc.

—Nathan

<hbaker1@pipeline.com> wrote in message
news:3d878b61.20928091@news.pipeline.com
> After 6 months of hard practise, I can finally climb
> the hill in front of my house with > 90% probability
> of staying on the uni.
>
> I’ve moved my focus to the hill down the street which
> is longer and steeper (> 14% grade). I suspect that
> this may take the next several months of practise.
>
> Eventually, I’d like to be able to go to San Francisco
> and do some of their hills – e.g., some of the cable
> car routes !
>
> I’m learning a lot in the process, and for those of you
> who live in the flats – you don’t really know how to
> uni until you can uni some steep hills!
>
> The main difference between the uni and the bike
> is that when you get tired on the bike, you can go
> slower, but when you get tired on the uni, you fall
> over.
>
> I’m going through tires at a rate of one per month,
> because of the two bald spots that develop.

On the subject of insane hill climbs, the steepest public road in the world according to the Guiness book of records is in Dunedin and has a 38% grade.

http://www.nzbike.com/activities/steepestroad.html

As far as I know Tony was the first person to unicycle down it and Ken Looi was the first to unicycle up AND down it. I have no desire to emulate either feat :slight_smile:

Peter

Re: Hill climbing, again…

> I’m going through tires at a rate of one per month,
> because of the two bald spots that develop.

Gotta learn how to rotate your tire, dude; it’ll cut your tire expense by a
factor of four.

Re: Hill climbing, again…

Doing a unicycle tour of San Francisco is fun. I took my Pashley MUni there about two years ago. I’m not crazy enough to do it on a Coker, but on a muni the hills are all doable and the cranks are long enough that you can keep good control when going downhill (it’s best to keep control and not run over pedestrians). San Francicso is a great city to explore on a uni.

Re: Hill climbing, again…

Oh man, I wish I had known that when I was there. I would’ve loved to try
that street. Thanks - I’m sure I’ll get back there someday.

—Nathan

“peter.bier” <peter.bier.b5gbm@timelimit.unicyclist.com> wrote in message
news:peter.bier.b5gbm@timelimit.unicyclist.com
>
> On the subject of insane hill climbs, the steepest public road in the
> world according to the Guiness book of records is in Dunedin and has a
> 38% grade.
>
> http://www.nzbike.com/activities/steepestroad.html
>
> As far as I know Tony was the first person to unicycle down it and Ken
> Looi was the first to unicycle up AND down it. I have no desire to
> emulate either feat :slight_smile:
>
> Peter

Re: Re: Hill climbing, again…

Wow! Thanks! :smiley:

I live in Boone North Carolina, and boy do we got hills. I recently did the hill to the student center on Appalachian State University on a Coker with seven inch cranks and got a bunch of high fives from rugby players. It was the proudest athletic accomplishment of my life, a happy geek was I. Later that week I made it to the top of Elk Mountain without stopping.
Life is Good. Chris Bogardus, carjug@yahoo.com, stop by if you are in the Beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains.

Re: Re: Hill climbing, again…

I used to flat down the road from Baldwin St. When I went back for graduation in May last year I rode a few of the streets around Dunedin on a Unicycle. Baldwin is the steepest, but the gruntiest hillclimb I did was Signal Hill road (perpendicular to Baldwin St). It is much longer and very very steep. There are also other steep streets which run parallel to Baldwin (they go up the same hill). I think these are even more difficult as they are longer than Baldwin, and almost as steep. There are also crazy windy steep streets on the other side of North East Valley. And of course Mt Cargill (which I would love to ride up on my MUni). What I’m trying to say…is that Dunedin is an awesome place to ride if you like hills :stuck_out_tongue:

Anyway, a slight correction- I was able to zig zag my way up most of Baldwin St, but the steepest bit just before the flat bit near the top I had to hop sideways to get up. My legs and arms felt like jelly after that.

I dug around for some photos of my Baldwin St ride. I also have some from my ‘Uni’ graduation which was on the same weekend that I was in Dunedin.

The worlds steepest street

Ken

C’mon, guys! You can’t get away with tales of Baldwin Street without mentioning this:


Thanks for the pics, Ken!

… and you thought those other things with 2 wheels were dangerous!

OK, back OT… Ken, did you go up and down that street on a 20-inch?

Yeah, that was very sad- I rode Baldwin St only a couple of months after that incident. I think another guy, Andre, got himself on the News by riding down Baldwin street when they were filming after the wheelie bin accident. Must make us look even nuttier than we are. Seriously though, going down Baldwin St is a STUPID thing to do in a Wheelie bin. Even for drunken University Students like myself. On a unicyle it is OK as long as you don’t face plant. I did not feel out of control at any point of the decent. It’s also much easier to bail out of a Uni than a wheelie bin or even a bike.

I did the Baldwin St running race when I first moved to Dunedin- just about wiped out on the way down but managed to hold it together (came 7th or 8th I think). Your legs end up going so fast that you’re bordering on outta control.

I used my 20’ Uni as it was the only unicycle I had at the time (I’d only been riding about 6 months)

Ken

Re: Hill climbing, again…

That is NOT a street !! That is a tarmac ski jump !!
“carjug” <carjug.b91ya@timelimit.unicyclist.com> wrote in message
news:carjug.b91ya@timelimit.unicyclist.com
>
> I live in Boone North Carolina, and boy do we got hills. I recently did
> the hill to the student center on Appalachian State University on a
> Coker with seven inch cranks and got a bunch of high fives from rugby
> players. It was the proudest athletic accomplishment of my life, a happy
> geek was I. Later that week I made it to the top of Elk Mountain without
> stopping.
> Life is Good. Chris Bogardus, carjug@yahoo.com, stop by if you are
> in the Beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains.
>
>
> –
> carjug
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> carjug’s Profile: http://www.unicyclist.com/profile/1228
> View this thread: http://www.unicyclist.com/thread/20498
>

SF riders

Great to hear that there are other hill climbers in SF. I have been back on My unicycle for about a month. I have been getting in shape riding the San Francisco hills. I encourage anyone to come to SF and try it out. Anyone could do it. I ride on Monday and Thursdays Day or night. Russian Hill gave me the JELLY LEGS the other night. You will notice me. I am lit up as bright as a Christmas tree.[ shows my traffic paranoia ].Stop me on the road and lets go for a ride.