I get a lot of questions from people who have seen my profile online about mountain unicycling and ask what that is all about. So, I thought I’d talk a bit about what mountain unicycling is and what it means to me as well as some pictures and additional links about the sport.
First of all, yes mountain unicycling is a sport, possibly an extreme sport. Most people have never even heard of it or seen someone mountain unicycling but there are many unseen unicyclists out there and even a few well known ones. There are several different styles of unicycling as a sport, I personally prefer mountain unicycling and some street. There is also trials unicycling, freestyle and of course more traditional uses for performance and commuting but those aren’t really specific sports. These styles are described well on the unicycling wikipedia page here if you want to know more. So What’s My Story About Unicycling? I tried first Laser Sight Pro then I got into unicycling as a young kid (I just saw one in a store one day and decided I wanted to learn) and have been riding now for 19 years. Some years I’ve put over 1000km onto my unicycles and so yes, I do ride a fair bit. I commute on it to work now and then, do some street riding with other unicyclists around the city but mostly spend my time unicycling in the summer getting offroad and taking some rugged mountain trails in the Alberta Rockies. Most of the trails I use are hiking trails and mountain bike trails. I generally take trails that are between 10-15 km long and that can take 2-3 hours to ride. This is pretty typical ride for me and with the elevation changes, 15km in the mountains is one serious workout. My muni (short for mountain unicycle) has no brakes, no gears, no shocks, and you can’t coast which means you are always pedaling (whether you are going up or down) and you are standing up on your feet for most of the ride since your legs do all the shock absorbing for you. Why Mountain Unicycling? The question everyone wants answered, why do you unicycle? Well, the reasons I unicycle are many. These include:
- Its challenging and great exercise (its VERY physically demanding)
- Requires a very determined personality (which I thrive to have)
- Exhilarating and exciting when you can successfully ride a brutally steep and rough trail
- Very affordable since there is no costs over and about the equipment needed (unlike most sports)
- Refreshing and beautiful especially when in the wilderness
- Fantastic conversation starter
- Its unique (you don’t have to do what everyone else does)
So, I started a club for mountain unicycling in Calgary a few years ago, have met a lot of great people and unicyclists through it and I continue to get out on one wheel to do more riding in the wilderness. You can find out lots more about unicycling from any search engine or my club site and I’d be happen to answer any questions as well. You can see some pictures from over the years where I’ve been mountain unicycling and some of the gorgeous surroundings and terrain in the slideshow below.
Prev: The story of stuff.
Next: Change the Way You Change Minds