MUni Leash

Came down a steep scary trail this weekend that had the wise old man voice in my head dominating my thoughts. If I stepped of the uni and lost it down the side of the mountain, there was a good chance I couldn’t get it back…

So I walked some sections.

And thought someone has to have come up with some sort of tether or leash to retrieve your uni if it wants to take a trip off the side of a narrow trail on a steep mountainside. Searching “leash” and came up with uni dog walkers (I’m one too). And found this thread while searching “tether” Muni Tether?
which is a dozen years old.

Anyone have any new thoughts on this?

I was thinking of something similar to a “zipper” used in climbing. A bundle of rope held snug and out of the way by velcro. Then when you become separated, the velcro gives and the rope extends, but you still have a connection to the uni.

The first part of this video shows the trail. As usual videos dont do the exposure justice.

May be you can try something like stretching kitesurfing leash?

They are bad for kitesurfing but may work for catching uni.

Normally I closely follow my uni or it follows into the back of me… If your worried you won’t be able to retrieve your uni in one piece or at all I’d be more inclined to worry about me taking a dive down there… Just a thought
Leash? Not sure I like the idea on safety values. As is thinking of clip in pedals on unis…

I’ve worried about the fool thing bouncing along behind me. With a tether I’d also start worrying it might drag me over the edge…

A lung line for training horses with a rubber band around the coil would work nicely.

If you added a velcro break away section you could break free with one good tug on the line.



If you’re riding trails that have such steep drop offs that you wouldn’t be able to retrieve your unicycle if it fell off the edge, I’d be worried about the unicycle pulling me off the edge with it if it were tethered to me. I’ve gotten pretty good at being able to quickly grab the seat when I UPD, but that still only works about 80% of the time. On really steep terrain I’d rather have the unicycle tumble out of my way so I can run out the fall better. If it were tethered to me it would either pull me in an awkward direction or I’d end up tripping over it.

thought about that for a very precise reason: unicycling on a snow field: I wanted to avoid a Muni gone mad hurting a skier.
bought a bungee cord but never had really the occasion to try it …

One of the safety aspects to municycling is that in a upd you are usually thrown free from the unicycle allowing you to control your fall. The last thing I need, is to be tied to my unicycle HELLO! It’s a bit like the captain going down with the ship (slight exaggeration)

As it is, I take care to tidy away my shoe laces and anything else that might get me tangled up in the unicycle.

I’d rather lose my unicycle than lose my life or break my neck being pulled down a steep mountain side.

If a section of the trail is as dangerous as you described then you did the sensible thing to dismount and walk. I use such opportunities to take a break have a drink and view the scenery.

Its so steep that Im worried about my uni falling, and never being able to retrieve it. So Im going to tie myself to, and then my family wont be able to retrieve my body when it takes me with it.

only trouble with a upd, rope or leash might go round your neck which could be less than ideal

I’m not sure why I found this funny, but it made me laugh out loud. :astonished:

How heavy is your unicycle?

How about this one? “I’m worried about my uni falling into someone and knocking them over a cliff.”

Admittedly there are some design issues to be worked out. Here are some of my thoughts.

There’s more than one response here claiming the unicycle will drag you down the mountain. This seems to be a remote possibility for myself since I outweigh my unicycle 10:1. If I can hold it with my hand and it doesn’t pull me over then I should be able to manage it on a short length of cord. My experience rock climbing where rope systems manage dynamic loads and things like this where the weights are more significant and close to 1:1 leads me to believe the unicycle should be manageable. I don’t unicycle because it is safe.

The cord would be long enough to be clear of the uni, but not so long as to allow the uni to gain significant momentum if it went on an undesired path. The cord would be attached to the riders waist or waistbelt of your pack and to the uni under the saddle. The slack in the cord would be bundled neatly in a package (velcro) that would break open when a load is put on it, deploying the cord and allowing the rider to be away from the uni.

The safety of the trail is another concern. The sections of the trail that got me thinking of this were steep, but I was confident I could stay on the trail if I dismounted. However, I was not confident that the uni would have the same sensibilities. A bad bounce or tumble and it could have been over the edge. With little brush on the side of the hill it would have gone a long way.

Here is an instance where such a device may have helped keep the rider out of trouble.

At 2:20 the rider has a UPD and stays on the trail. The uni goes its own way… way way down the hill. The rider moves to retrieve his uni and goes for a long slide. With a tether he would just have to reel it in.

But maybe we should just tell this guy that he should walk instead.

And for us in lower elevations on the west coast it could make retrieving your uni from poison oak a less dangerous proposition.

I think there is value to the idea and I will keep mulling it over. I don’t think it is something that I would always want to use, but I do feel it could have its place, where an off trail adventure to get your uni back is undesirable like on those steep sided trails or the PO gardens, or for the safety of others like ski slopes.

I think the idea has merit - At the same time there’s LOTS of things that could go wrong. Main one for me is getting tangled up in it - Even if the uni itself is far enough away from me to cause pain, the tether itself would probably trip me up (I trip over small rocks sometimes though so that’s not saying much!)

Admittedly I don’t ride anywhere that I could really ‘lose’ my uni down a hill. There are hills I ride next to that are steep and long, but they’re mostly grassy and easily walk-downable. It’s the Hogweeds I’ve got to look out for - My city is crawling with them!

Hey, how about a foldable grappling hook in your backpack?

I dont know, for me I wouldnt risk it, unless, the muni weighed as light as a skateboard. Remember, even though the muni doesnt weigh that much, however, when you UPD the muni will most likely have pretty good downhill speed, and that momentum can make a difference between slightly hanging on, or tumbling down along with it…

… and remember that during a UPD you are often out of balance which could make it even easier for your uni to drag you off the cliff.

I think the idea definitely has merit, but there are some things to consider. Ideally it would be nice to have the option of using the line or it being completely out of the way so there’s no chance of getting tripped up by the leash if you have a really bad uncontrolled dismount. The problem I often have is when I half-voluntarily dismount then I usually try and grab the seat handle, but often I jam my finger into the bolts or the handle and hurt myself, so often I just let it go to prevent this (on one ride I had blood blisters on 3 of my fingertips from slamming my fingers into the bottom of the seat while trying to save the muni during dismounts).

So what I’m thinking is: how about attaching the velcro/extendable line to the muni itself with some kind of handle or grab line just under the seat (rather than to the rider). Then if you know you’re going to have a controlled and safe fall you grab the leash without fear of destroying your fingers. If you do a real uncontrolled UPD or are in a dangerous situation then you don’t grab the leash and as the line is tucked away under the seat, there is no way to get caught up in the leash. I guess the trick would be finding a “strap or grab handle” that is big enough to be easily and consistently grabbed in the split second as you dismount but also small and out the way enough not to get in the way of anything. So is it a loop (could get caught around your hand or finger)? or a T-bar? Or just a single strap? I’m thinking maybe a strap with a big knot on the end, which could then be placed just below the seat and brake handle?