Uphill unicycling

Does anyone else like going up and down really steep hills?

I prefer uphill on my 36er always feel like it wants to run away from me downhill :slight_smile:

Check out the muni threads, and there’s a Terry Peterson video on Fargo Street that’s worth a look.
Personally I wouldn’t say I like riding up steep hills, but there’s definitely a sense of achievement when I manage to clean a climb, and gravity credits need to be earned!

I have been going up this one hill for a few weeks on my 24 in a really hilly circuit by my house. Each time I go up I’m a little faster. Too addicted.

With “steep” downhills, I often hang back too much, because Im afraid the uni will just roll away under me, but that results in losing balance. Uphill I have begun liking much more. It trains your thighs, but when the technique is good, using gravity to kinda fall uphill, then you nearly don’t need leg muscles. At least not as much as when I started. Mostly it is difficult when steep uphill roads, even asphalt roads, have bends in them and the inner side of the bend is lower than the outer side.

You can use those bends to your advantage. Since the edge is usually the uphill side, if you ride an outside-inside-outside line through the turn you can gain some momentum or much needed rest.

That’s kind of how I think about it. Riding uphill is like putting money in the bank. Going back down is like spending it! :slight_smile:

Do you have steep hills in Denmark? Sorry, I’ve only been to the Copenhagen area…

I like hill climbs. I have a few favourites. Not riding enough at the moment for my maximum strength and endurance. Getting by on improved technique. Quite surprised what I can still do.

Saddle Way
About 180 metres. One of my ultimate hills. Reaches about 18 percent near the top. Done on 24 after several attempts. Did it on the 26 first go. Never tried the 29 and there is no way yet.

Myrtle Street
About 500 metres. Unrelenting slog until the last 100 metres. Regular part of my ride. Reliable on 26. Done it on the 29 a couple of times.

Castlefield Drive
About 300 metres. Reliable on 26. Done this on the 29 a few of times now.

Mooball Street
About 120 metres. Have to admit riding on the road despite the centreline. Footpath has a very steep pinch I can’t get past. Usually manage it on 26. Not yet on 29. In my peak I could accelerate up the steepest section.

Murwillumbah Hill
About 800 metres long and 50 metres altitude. Nice steady start of the first 200 metres then a bit relief until it becomes steep close to the top when fatigue is really setting in. Was reliable on 24. Done it a few of times on the 26.

William Street
The Holy Grail. 26% grade near the top. I get about up to about 18% (the second power pole) on the 26.

All unis have 125 cranks.

First, I think it’s awesome that you like hills, Fnybny. Hopefully, you’ll still feel that way as you continue to ride. You’re definitely crazy, but good for you! There’s nothing wrong with being crazy (But we’re never gonna survive, unless we get a little crazy…). It may be a prerequisite for riding a unicycle.

Climbing steep hills well is a great skill. I used to ride mountain bikes a lot, which naturally involved climbing hills, and I was really pleased the first time I climbed a long steep hill on my 20" unicycle. It was so much easier! I don’t climb many hills on my 20" lately, but even with a bigger wheel and shorter cranks, the uni beats a bike any day (although, since getting good at climbing hills on the uni, I’m much better now at climbing hills on a bike, even on my single gear, heavy beach cruiser!).

I wouldn’t say I really enjoy climbing hills. It’s just something I have to do, but I do feel a great sense of accomplishment, that is, if I’m not too wasted to feel anything but dead afterwards. I live on top of a very steep, long-ish hill. It’s not really fun to ride up or down it, (although my new brakes are making the downhill much easier!), but I ride the trails near my house frequently, so it’s sort of unavoidable. I’ve noticed that it’s a pretty good gauge of how much leg strength I’ve developed. The hill really sucks because I have to climb it AFTER I’ve already gotten pretty worn out from my ride, and the hill is an exercise in itself.

I have noticed that as I develop more leg strength and technique (as Setonix said), even if I’m wasted I can still climb the hill very well, and even today when I was feeling like I was about halfway to a heatstroke and heart attack, climbing the hill wasn’t really that hard. Even though I was really dreading it, I was up before I knew it. Of course, I was dyin’ at the top and out of breath, but that was AFTER I got there.

Hope you continue to enjoy your climbing!

Most hills are not very steep, but in Jutland (in the west) there it is much more hilly.

Uhm how do I find out how much the percentage is when they don’t normally show itin DK :slight_smile:
Calculate with trigoniometrics

I have an old pocket sized tilt meter that I have used to measure the angle on the concrete kerb.

Other alternatives include an app for smart phones. Some spirit levels include a digital tilt meter. The level is more accurate because it measures over a longer distance though it wouldn’t be a convenient thing to carry.:wink:

Some bike computers such as the Sigma ROX6 include a barometric altimeter which can be used to calculate the gradient. This is the best because it is recorded in the data as you ride.

I love hill climbing! I’m definitely not as good at it as some on here (Take a peek at BungeeJoe’s videos for example) but it’s something I enjoy.

I mostly ride an ungeared 36er with 125mm cranks, which seems to be dead on the money in terms of being able to spin up most hills I come across - I have considered shorter cranks for a faster commute but worry my hillclimbing will suffer.

Downhills… I’m not so fond of. Once you get into the rhythm and spin down them too, they can be fun, but otherwise it’s difficult to hold the wheel back from rolling away without you! I don’t use a brake though so that may explain a lot :roll_eyes:

Starting to get the rhythm on the 29 now. Put up the tyre pressure to 55 psi. I realised it had been buckling a bit with the torque on the hills.

Straight up Mooball Street for the first time tonight. Never looked in doubt. Myrtle Street and Castlefield Drive have become routine. Feeling much more in control even though I have only been riding once a week and missed a week due to injury.

Even decided to take on Saddle Way for the first time after 15 kms of hard riding and would have made it if I hadn’t lost concentration near the top when a dog started barking. Next time.

Going to try the 24% grade on William Street with the 26 soon.

isn’t downhill just about throwing your feet in the air and roll all the way down. Easy does it:D:p

I wish I had those roads here. I did do an uphill turn of a few 100 metres. I had many kids on skateboards watching me, so it was important to keep going and not stop halfway. I’m not sure about the percentage, but enough of a climb.
Today I also rode my mountainbike for the first time since I started unicycling last year. After selling my car I had 20km to ride home. On 29" uni that just would take me too much time, but I did notice that after a year of unicycling that my legs have become much stronger. There was also a hill along the way of which I remember I was much faster with the uni. The only thing that felt weird with the mountain bike was to ride without holding the steer. A uni just behaves a lot more different and ur very much in control with both hands free.

Funny how we can find that extra oomph when someone is watching. Had a few incident like that myself.