What qualifies as a LONG ride?

I’m with Mikefule on the whole a long ride being better than what you have done before.

The most I have done is 80 km or 50 miles, I could easily do more if I ate a dinner but so far thats my longest ride done with only a coffee and a couple timbits in me.

This summer when it warms up more I plan on doing a 160 km trip to my cottage. I still don’t know if I want to do it in a day or two as it gets pretty hilly and rough near the end (you need four wheel drive to get through some of the hills without getting stuck).

So without further ado:
Age: 18
Years riding: 1.5
Opinion: Stated above
Tiny: under 10 km
Short: 10-20 km
Medium: 20-40 km
Long: 40-80 km
Ultra: 80km plus

When I was at my peak a few years ago, I regularly (more than once a week) did an hour (12 - 13 miles) without a dismount. A couple of times I did 2 hours with out a dismount - around 22 miles.

For long distance rides, rather than to prove a point, a dismount every 20 minutes or half an hour is probably wise. You learn to pace yourself.

I tend to take one big break for about a half hour or so to stop at a restaurant or the like for a meal about half way through, other than that its non stop riding.

Me on 24":

tiny: To end of road
medium: 1-2 km
long 5-8 km- the fearthest i’ve ever gone;)
ultra: 9 km +

Age: 52
Years riding: ~3 since I started again.
Opinion: Over 10 miles is long, more than 20miles is great for those who want to do it.
My personal range:
Tiny: Under 1 mile
Short: 5 mile
Medium: 7 mile
Long: 10 mile
Ultra: 20+ mile I have never done more than 12 miles.

I’ve never done more than low 20’s in mileage, always on the stock Radial 360. I can maintain 10mph with casual effort over this distance. I’d like to get a block of time and crack 30 miles. The time seems to be the determining factor. The 2hr MTN bike race I just did left me MUCH more tired than any 20 mile road ride I’ve ever done. I think 30 miles would be no sweat (well, some sweat).

Improvements since my last 20 miler:

Age: 44
Years riding: 2.5
Tiny: 2
Short: 5-10
Medium: 10-20
Long: 30+
Ultra: I need two back-to-back 70km rides to qualify for the Lobster’08 race. I also would like to do a metric and imperial century.

I never consider distance as a measure of how long a ride is because it is so variable.

Age: 28
Years riding 6
Short: less than 1hr
Medium: 1-4hrs
Long: 4+ hours.
Ultra: 8+ hours

This is a good measure for variable amounts of climbing on road rides, but hour-for-hour Muni is MUCH more tiring than road riding, no?

Age: 17
Years riding: 4, Seriously for the last 7-8 months.
Short: 25 miles
Medium: 50 miles
Long: 100 miles
Ultra: 100+ miles.

I plan to do a ultra ride, and long rides. So far, all my rides go from a few miles, to 50-60 miles for a day of riding. On my trials I can ride easily 10 - 15 miles with no soreness. Once I have gone around 20 on it, it gets to be painstakingly boring.

On my coker, I can go forever without getting sore or tired. I just use an old, fat KH seat. No modifications to it, and just the regular handle on it. I hop on it and just go for miles and turn around once it gets dark. Longest was right above 50 miles.

You make a good point, Ken. However, no one, realistically, would ride a 20" uni for 8 hrs! Generally most of us thinking about long rides are on a 29" uni or larger, geared or otherwise.

I noticed that many “new” riders find that rides of just a few miles are tiring. Of course, a lot of their difficulty is related to technique (I can’t ride an ultimate wheel longer than a few hundred yards without getting exhausted bc my technique sucks) as well as to muscular conditioning.

You ride a lot faster than almost anyone, Ken, so it’s a good point that distance is not the best comparison measure. I ride pretty fast, too, so I could revise my list as follows:
Short: less than an hour
Medium: 1-3 hrs
Long: 3-7 hrs
Ultra: 7-12 (my longest rides took 12 hrs, with about 3 hrs in breaks)

But yeah, the whole idea of quantifying rides is pretty silly.

I have!!! Sometimes longer, my rides can consist of riding my trials from my house, to everybody else’s house to pick them up, ride the few miles downtown, and ride there for hours, then riding back and hitting spots all along the way. =p

I have never really done a long ride on a unicycle. My longest being 22km on a 20", though I have done a lot longer on a 24", I have just never figured out the length. If I was using a 29" or a coker I would say:

Years riding: 1
Tiny: 0 - 5km
Small: 5 - 15km
Medium: 15 - 40km
Large: 40 - 80km
Ultra: 80+

I agree that muni is much more tiring per unit of distance travelled than road riding. I reckon every kilometre travelled offroad is worth two on road! However, I’ve never had a speedo on my muni, so its hard to judge how long my typical muni rides are…

You’re nuts! Gonna fall off!

Oops. Typo.

I meant:

Your nuts are going to fall off.:smiley:

Age: 51
Years riding: 4.5
Tiny: just around the neighbourhood
Short: an hour
Medium: half the day
Long: all day
Ultra: a week or 10 day uni tour

it also depends how big ur uni is ive doen 25 miles on a 24 and thats long but now i dont 25 on my 29 all the time

Depends on the terrain. Speed Muni a long single track in Santa Barbara and you´ll be trashed in two hours. On the other hand, I can tool along the Santa Monica bike on my Coker at around 12 MPH and so long as I drink enough fluids and take a few breaks to eat I can go for several hours no problem. My problem on the longish Coker rides is that I don´t do it enough and my ass starts hurting after 20 miles. It becomes more work than fun.


I’d agree that muni is much more effort but in 4 hours of road riding i’d probably have ridden for 3 hrs 50 mins. In four hours of muni there’d be lots of upds and more stopping for snacks, photos, gates, impossible* terrain, etc and would probably be more like 3 hrs riding and never spending longer that 20mins in the saddle at one time. For me I’d say the effort in relation to total time (riding plus extras) muni has the edge and I usually feel it more the next day but there isn’t much in it


Muni is more tiring for me because I have to have weight on the pedals to ride obstacles like logs, roots, rocks and the like. Standing on the pedals like that saps my thighs.

With smooth road riding, my legs only burn from climbing, so seat comfort is the most limiting factor (for me).

100 miles is a long ride, less than 20 miles is just getting places, anything in between is a proper good ride.

I think if I did much more than 100 miles I’d not be able to ride the next day. 100 miles and I can do another 50 the next day.

On the 26" muni on technical terrain, 40 miles is a super long ride that hurts, 20 miles is a good long day ride.