Posts Tagged ‘unicycling’

TUM 2009 Recap – Shenandoah National Park

April 10, 2011

Well folks, it’s about that time of year again. Team Unicycle Max are in the planning stages of our next great unicycle adventure. It’s been a few years since we updated our blog, but rest assured, we have been very busy. Allow me to fill you in on our 2009 adventure.

After Ride The Lobster in 2008, the three of us decided to make this team uni ride an annual event. The first post-RTL ride for Team Unicycle Max happened in Shenandoah National Park, on Skyline Drive in Virginia. We rode, we camped, we hiked, we met a lot of really nice and generous people along the way. It was a huge success and we had a great time.


Stay tuned for a retrospective look at the 2010 adventure: The Grand Canyon.

-Kyle D

Don’t Hang Up Your Uni Just Yet

December 8, 2008

So just when I thought the unicycling season was over, here come the holidays and along with them, some unique opportunities to ride. Some opportunities are for fun, others out of necessity. Either way, it always feels good to get out and ride, no matter how cold or windy it may be.

The first opportunity came around Thanksgiving. The local Philadelphia rock radio station WMMR has a very funny morning show that I listen to regularly. Every year, on the day before Thanksgiving, the Preston and Steve show puts on their own parade of debauchery called the Spanksgiving Day parade. It features some local string bands for that authentic parade sound, truckloads of hot ladies, fire-breathers, pizza dough tossers, Jesus and Moses in an epic lightsaber duel, all centered loosely around an S & M theme. They basically take all the crazy local talent they can get and cram them into one little rogue party parade. So when they put out the call this year for unicyclists, I contacted them immediately.

lucha-uni1

Unfortunately, I was the only unicyclist in the Philadelphia area to attend, but I had a great time. I rode my trials uni instead of my 36″ just for maneuverability sake, and a luchador mask for weirdness sake.

The next riding opportunity came out of necessity. My driver’s license was set to expire in mid-December. I had my ticket to get a new photo taken and just had to find the time to get to the License Photo Center. They weren’t open late enough to go during the week, so my only option was to go on a Saturday. Unfortunately, the wife has class all day on Saturdays and therefore has the car as well. So my only choice was to unicycle to the photo center. It was only a 6 mile round trip, but take my lack of riding lately, the hills, the cold, and the wind, it turned out to be quite the ride. Of course it also meant that my new license photo was red-faced, sweaty, and with a bad case of hat-head. The ride was tough, but I felt great once I got back to my place. When you don’t ride for a while, you forget how good it makes you feel when you do.

Happy holiday riding!

Seasons Changing: Unicycle to Hockey

October 20, 2008

There was a time for me when unicycling was a year round sport. Riding through the Maine snow and ice to get to class everyday was something I took great pride in. It really wasn’t as impractical as you might think. But with school days long gone, so is the need for daily short distance commuting through the snow.

So the unicycling season here in the northeast is coming to a close. Less daylight after work, colder, leaves disguising rogue potholes etc. Luckily the Hockey season is fully upon us to comfort us in this time of need. Although we may be spending more time indoors as the days grow colder and darker, watching the fast-paced heavy hitting action of a good hockey game is sure to warm your heart.

This week, I will be attending my first NHL game of the season, and my first game since I was a kid in Arizona. Good times. This time around, the Flyers will hopefully get their first win and make delicious chum out of the Sharks.

Philadelphia is alive with hope now that the Phillies will be playing in the word series, so no one is really paying attention to hockey in this city. Now with an 0-5 record so far, I don’t blame them. The Flyers are not off to a good start, so to ease the pain of a potential 6th lose, we also have tickets to see the Red Wings beat the beans out of the Bruins in Boston. Detroit fans are known for popping up all over the place, sometimes in large numbers, so I’m sure I won’t be the only one sporting red and white against the black and yellow. Plus we have a cup to defend, so look out Boston!

So folks, if the impending doom and gloom of winter is keeping you off the uni, go ahead and settle down for a good old fashioned game of bone-crunching hockey. You’ll be glad you did. Go Red Wings, go Flyers!

Oh and go Phillies!

Overtime at the Joe

June 3, 2008

I don’t have television, so I’m listening to the hockey game on internet radio out of Detroit. The Red Wings can take the Stanley Cup tonight if they beat the Penguins. Now, even though Team Unicycle Max is spread out geographically, we are one and all Red Wings fans. The game just finished up it’s first sudden-death overtime period, and I’m trying not to fidget by writing.

I got word from Carrot Signs that our Team Unicycle Max flag is on its way, and should arrive by Saturday. Kyle sent me pictures of the jerseys and T-shirts, back from the printer, and they’re fantastic. Now that our bodies are in shape, and our unicycles are in top notch condition (okay, so mine was the only one that needed a real tune up, but my Captain Pasquale has never been better), we’re getting our merch together. It’s pretty cool. We should get some stickers made up. We won’t have them for the race, but they’re pretty cheap to have made up.

I have not one, not two, but three live feeds of the Red Wings game right now. It’s a but much…

I’ve officially started teaching Courtney to unicycle. I don’t know if I’ve gotten to be a better teacher, or if she’s just a good student, or what, but she’s picking it up quickly. It typically takes between 8 and 12 hours of practice before you can be called a unicycle rider, defined by being able to ride 50 meters unassisted. Courtney has three hours in the saddle right now, and she’s been able to unicycle three or four meters.  She’s not free mounting yet, but once she gets a little more comfortable riding, I’ll have her start. She’s really doing well, I’m proud of her.

The second overtime period just started, and Marc-Andre Fleury, goalie for the Penguins, has 49 saves so far. forty Nine! This is getting ridiculous. This game started on Tuesday.

I made a list of all the things I need to bring up to Nova Scotia. It’s a surprisingly short list, as we’ll be spending most of our days on the roll. That’s how close we are to the race. I’m starting to do laundry, and get ready to pack.

Let’s roll!

Shorter is Better in the Long Run

May 28, 2008

Ride the Lobster is less than 3 weeks away, which means it’s officially crunch time. Just 3 short weeks left to turn the training knob to 11 and to get our equipment overhauled and pimped out. For Max, his uni has the most miles on it by far. He has also done quite a bit of riding in the snow during the long Maine winters, so his unicycle has some badly needed maintenance before the race. For myself, I just need some shorter cranks.

Now we’ve all had the unfortunate experience of fighting with cotterless cranks, getting them to stay on the square tapered hub without coming loose every 10 minutes, pounding them with a rubber mallet to get a nice tight fit, or improvising a shim to fix an ill-fitting crank wobble. However, I have the luxury of a new ISIS hub on my wheel. That means stronger, more reliable, and a heck of a lot easier to change the cranks. I had my first taste of it last night and I couldn’t believe what a breeze it was. The ISIS hub and cranks are quickly becoming the standard in new unicycles. I was lucky enough to score the only Nimbus 36″er with the ISIS system. It was a custom creation from the folks at unicycle.com and I’m so glad they hooked me up. Not that I’m doing any crazy trials on my 36er or anything, but with the ISIS cranks, I’m not worrying about bending them or tightening them everywhere I go, something Max knows about in the worst way. During the final leg of his New England solo tour, he encountered some major crank failure, which is not very fun in itself, but when it happens in the pouring rain and in the middle of nowhere, a failure like that is miserable.

So my new cranks went on in a snap. I’ll take them for a spin later today. They should allow me to go faster on the flats and downhill sections. Hopefully I still have enough leverage to tackle all the ridiculous hills around my neighborhood. Stay tuned for a full report.

-Kyle D

We Are Here to Go!

May 19, 2008

Welcome to the new Team Unicycle Max blog. This is it; Uni Central, HQ, your number one place for exclusive Team Unicycle Max content. We’re gearing up for the big race less than a month away. 35 teams are now signed on to ride the crustacean-shaped Canadian providence. Plans are coming together, jerseys are being printed, the wheels are in motion. We’re all very excited, not just because we get to participate in such an epic global unicycling event, but because we get to ride as a family. The Max Man himself was a big inspiration for the organizers of this race, so just riding with THE UnicyleMax is awesome. The race is approaching fast, so check back often with www.unicyclemax.com and www.ridethelobster.com for the latest news and updates.

K-Man out.