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Old 2008-04-04, 10:22 AM   #1
GizmoDuck
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Baldwin Street again...The Worlds Steepest Street

There are a couple of threads on unicycling up Baldwin Street but I thought I'd start a new one as the others are getting a bit old and it might be interesting to talk about your own personal hillclimbing challenges on this thread.

If you don't already know, Baldwin Street is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the World Steepest Street, with a 38% gradient. It is a residential street in Dunedin, New Zealand.

I know of only three riders to have ridden it without falling off (Tony Melton, Daniel Goodman and Myself), although I think there may be a few more. Possibly Roger Davies as well from memory.

I have finally uploaded a news story from last years SINZ Unicycle Tour (www.sinzuni.org), which shows some good footage on our attempts at Baldwin Street:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnNO5MmcBiA

Here's a photo of Tony Melton riding up Baldwin Street:
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Last edited by GizmoDuck; 2008-04-04 at 10:23 AM.
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Old 2008-04-04, 10:43 AM   #2
unicycledood
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Old 2008-04-04, 10:52 AM   #3
ivan
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Looks pretty badass.

How long is it?

Is 38% an average or more or less constant gradient?

Edit: and I'd love to glide down that street
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Old 2008-04-04, 11:06 AM   #4
GizmoDuck
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38% is the max I think. The whole street is probably about 800m I think. The first 400m is pretty level, then it steepens up pretty quickly.

I don't think gliding is a good idea! People have been killed on that street.
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Old 2008-04-04, 11:16 AM   #5
TonyMelton
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ivan
Looks pretty badass.

How long is it?
Even more badass when carrying a bottle of Ch'i as well, as illustrated in the photo above!

Baldwin St is not particularly long, maybe 400m from bottom to top, but boy its steep! The climb got my heart working really hard. I remember salivating like crazy at the top - no idea why! Maybe it was in response to road riding without a camelbak on or something... I was stoked to complete the climb on my first attempt of the day on a borrowed 24". Last time I tried to ride up Baldwin St was about 10 years ago when I lived just a few blocks down the valley. I only got 2/3 of the way up before I had to stop then.

The death on Baldwin St Ken is referring to is when someone tried to descend the street in a wheelie bin, some years ago. Or are there others I don't know about, Ken?

Last edited by TonyMelton; 2008-04-04 at 11:18 AM.
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Old 2008-04-04, 06:52 PM   #6
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Hahahaha... I read about that in the Darwin Awards...
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Old 2008-04-04, 07:04 PM   #7
siafirede
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I don't think that Daniel rode up the entire street, but he was able to do the steepest part.
Also, seeing Hans ride down on his 36 was pretty hilarious. That is an example of an occasion where you NEED a brake on a 36.


EDIT: duh, Daniel lives in Dunedin, so I am sure he has tried it again and completed the task.
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Old 2008-04-04, 07:11 PM   #8
Klaas Bil
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How far is this from UNICON15? Close enough so that the organisation can think of something special? Maybe a Guinness record? A competition?
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Old 2008-04-04, 07:37 PM   #9
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I have a street by my house that i think is about that steep, or possibly steeper. Ive ridden up that, with some difficulty. Then again, its hard to tell from just a picture.
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Old 2008-04-04, 07:37 PM   #10
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It isn't close. You would have to cross over to the South Island from Wellington and go pretty far southeast.

However, if you are already going to be in NZ you might as well check out the South Island anyway!
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Old 2008-04-04, 07:44 PM   #11
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I'd like to see somebody try riding up that hill on a coker with short cranks!
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Old 2008-04-04, 07:54 PM   #12
Klaas Bil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siafirede
However, if you are already going to be in NZ you might as well check out the South Island anyway!
That is actually the current plan!

Peleschramm, you don't have to judge from a picture. Baldwin street is 38% and you can measure 'your' steep street with this: http://www.xs4all.nl/~klaasbil/inclinometer.htm
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Old 2008-04-04, 07:54 PM   #13
siafirede
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Quote:
I'd like to see somebody try riding up that hill on a coker with short cranks!
I tried...with 125mm cranks...and I didn't get very far at all
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Old 2008-04-04, 08:08 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Klaas Bil
That is actually the current plan!

Peleschramm, you don't have to judge from a picture. Baldwin street is 38% and you can measure 'your' steep street with this: http://www.xs4all.nl/~klaasbil/inclinometer.htm
Thank you. Will do.
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Old 2008-04-04, 10:42 PM   #15
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Crazy.

Well not to rain on your parade but only TWO people have EVER ridden my whole street with out falling off. And I am one of thoes people. It has a slope of around 2% and its like 300m LONG. But wait the street that is like 5 min from my house I am the ONLY one in the whole world to ride it on a unicycle without falling off, man its got like a slope of 3% and its like 555m long. Man, i had the adrenaline pumping as i rode it, it was crazy.

Last edited by irvinegr; 2008-04-04 at 10:46 PM.
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