Tour Blog





May 2006

Ok, here it is, our next big project, the 2007 SINZ Unitour!  Check it out



26 March 2006

This may be the last update from the LUT, but hopefully will whet your appetite for the next tour.  Based on the survey responses, we will probably organise another Asia Unitour in 2008.  So far the most likely candidates are Mongolia or China, led once again by Grasshopper Adventures.  

In the meantime, Feb/Mar 2007 looks set for the SINZ Unitour.  That's South Island, New Zealand.....

*Watch this space*


17 Mar 2006

The online donations for our charity challege have now closed and we have raised over $4500 for the OXFAM charity.  Thanks to everyone who sponsored our riders during the Laos Unitour, and to NZ for helping out with the online donations.  The Laos Unitour riders had an amazing time, but it is nice to have been able to make small difference during our travels.


11 Mar 2006

Well, here's another gallery for you:

Seths Photos

It comes complete with Seths Tour Blog which makes an interesting read!


19 Feb 2006

Alright, here are various photos albums from our LUT riders:

Nathan Hoovers Gallery

Mike Scalisi's Gallery

Gilbys' ftp site- photos from various riders



3 Feb 2006

What an awesome tour!  Thanks again to everyone for your donations to OXFAM, all the postings on the guestbook and your support for the tour.  A big thanks to all the LUT riders for taking part in such a unique event.  It's not everyday you see 19 Unicyclists from 7 countries ride across Laos to raise money for charity.  It was a really weird and wonderful concept and I hope that you have fond memories of this for years to come.  It's certainly an achievement to be proud of.  And I reserve one  of the biggest THANK YOU's to Jason from Grasshopper Adventures.  The tour operator with more experience running Unicycle Tours than any ROCK!

Also thanks for everyones kind messages after I broke my leg on Day 7.  I'm doing fine, hoping to get home early next week.  Bit disappointed that I didnt' get to ride the whole tour, but I enjoyed every minute of organising and riding and wouldn't give it up for anything.

The daily updates are a bit slow in coming but hopefully will be all online over the next week or two when I get more photos and stories from the riders.  Keep this site bookmarked and check out the photos.

Take care,



26 Jan

Sorry for the lack of updates- the internet connection is cr*p.  Dial up speeds that keep cutting out is no good if you're trying to upload photos.  Florian managed to find an unsecured wifi network- will try uploading shortly.  The tour is going really well so far.  All our riders seem to be getting on.  We haven't done much riding yet though!  Thanks for all the messages of support in the Guestbook- most of the riders appreciate reading them- even though we're having difficulty updating the website to let you know how we're getting on!


22 Jan 2006

Cool, we're here! At least quite a few of the riders met up in Bangkok.  Just been riding around town and causing chaos in the streets of Bangkok.  We even had the local TV crew turn up to film us- apparently we'll be on National News tonight!  


16 Jan 2006

Less than a week before the tour- see you all soon!

Just want to introduce our mascot- Mr Kong, who will be accompanying us on tour.  Congratulations to Sid Rajan- our early registrant who get's to piggyback Mr Kong across Laos.



22 December 2005

I'd like to welcome the newest addition to our LUT group, Nick Clearwater, along with his Dad, Barry, who's is already coming on tour with us.  This makes it two family groups coming along on the LUT.  Sorry Beau, it looks like you miss out on being the youngest participant on this Unitour :o)

This takes the tour to 19 Unicyclists, + Jason and our support crew.  The second biggest ever Unitour after UAM (Unicycle Across Minnesota).  Well done and keep up the enthusiasm!  Not much longer now.....


10 December 2005

Ok, not long to go till the tour.  Hopefully your training is going well.

I've made up a keyring for LUT riders.  Check em out:


For non-LUT riders, if you would like a copy of the official LUT keyring, just sponsor me in the charity challenge and I'll send one out to you.

Tony Melton is in charge of designing and printing the LUT T-shirts.  If you have any ideas for a design please get in touch with him ASAP.


6 Nov 2006

Bad news I'm afraid.  Unfortunately we've been unable to secure funding from National Geographic for the Documentary,so it will be too costly to film.  Never mind, our story will be just as special when shared amongst friends and the Unicycle community.


27 Sept 2005

There is some very useful info now on the Grasshopper Website.  Please make sure you check these out if nothing else:

Also a quick update from Jason Williams our Grasshopper Adventures tour operator.  He's just ridden the route we will be taking.  Here's what he had to say:

"The survey ride that I finished a few weeks ago was awesome.  I had to rush thru a little as I was running out of time - had to sometimes do 2 days in one which was a killer.  I have all the altitude profiles which I will send you when I get back to Bangkok next week (still in Borneo).  Ok, no kidding - this is one tough ride.  The two days riding from Luang Prabang to Kiu Ka Cham to Kasi is all big big ups and big big downs (the downs are good on a bike, not sure about on a unicycle).  There is little in the way of steepness but they are long climbs and descents up to 20km long.  Kasi to Vang Vieng is the easiet day and then there are two days of flat long riding.  Up in the hills it will be quite cool (long sleeved top required in the evenings - except for Canadians!) and the morning should be great cool weather for riding.  The days will warm up but in the hill it shouldn't get above 30 degrees.  From Kasi we are down in the valleys and it will be much more 'tropical', sweaty warm days but cooling off a little in the evenings.  I wouldn't expect too much of what you experienced in Cambodia as it was quite hot on that trip.  For training everyone needs to expect long days on the road so endurance training will be the best thing.  I really don't know how unicycles handle hills but those two days I found tough on the bike so you guys will be really pushing yourselves.  It is though, a far more spectacular ride than Cambodia will beautiful limestone mountains and meandering rivers.  The people are more shy than the Cambodians but it doesn't take too long to get the kids relaxed and having fun."

8 Sept 2005

It's been a hectic couple of months since my last update.  The Alps Unicycle Tour through Europe was a success- lot's of big mountains and some very amazing scenery.  Read about it on:

Welcome to all the new people who have signed up since our last update.  The tour is looking very full and there is a fantastic mix of people.  

The OXFAM donations webpage is now online, so feel free to organise family/friends/workmates to sponsor your ride. 

Check out this link- it's written by Patrick Morgan- a keen local biker around these parts.  He's just returned from Laos.  Interesting read:


26 July 2005

Just a quick update- I will be going away on 28 July, so will not be able to attend to registrations for about 3 1/2 wks.  If you would like confirmations of registration please do so before then.  Here's how we're lookin':

Registered riders:
Mike Scalisi (USA)
Rob Bowman (USA)
Florian Schlumpf (Switzerland)
Lars Lottrup (Denmark)
Jesper Andersen (Denmark)
Tom Olsen (Denmark)
Hans Fiby (Austria)
Barry Clearwater (Australia)
John Cooper (Australia)
Sid Rajan (Singapore)
Bruce Hall (New Zealand)
Mike Dillon (New Zealand)

Ken Looi (New Zealand)
Tony Melton (New Zealand)- Ken's understudy in case something happens to him.
Jason Williams (Australia/Thailand)- tour operator

Another 6 Unicyclists (5 USA, 1 NZL)  yet to confirm their registrations.  We are looking at accomodating additional riders, but, as mentioned earlier, registrations will likely close in August.

We have also been talking to OXFAM about fundraising and visiting a charity project in Laos.  They seemed pretty keen on the idea.  Here's a transcript from OXFAM:

"I am so pleased that you are thinking of fundraising for Oxfam and our projects, so here’s the story Ken... At the moment Oxfam NZ does not directly fund projects in Laos (we do have a presence in Vietnam and Cambodia as you know). However both Oxfam GB and Oxfam Australia have projects in Laos. It would be no problem for us to forward your funds to these programmes so you know all your money is going to the area (this is currently what Oxfam NZ does in this situation). You can find out more about what sort of projects are being carried out at present by visiting: /asia/laos/index.html

We have still not arranged project visits in Laos for our challenge in February, but this is currently being looked at. I will do my utmost to organise a trip to one of our projects for you.  So that is the current situation, and is the ‘worst case scenario’ - I reluctantly use that phrase as it really is a fantastic outcome for the people there!

Now for the exciting news….After receiving your e-mail I had a talk to our programmes manager for South Asia. He explained to me that we are not currently directly funding any projects in Laos. However after I explained your enthusiasm, and that we do cycling challenges there, he seemed warm to the idea of us looking to directly fund a project/s in Laos. He is going to pass me the details of the Programme Director in Laos, to find out if there are projects requiring funding, and I am going to follow it up.

 Laos is one of the poorest countries in Asia. Wouldn’t it be an amazing achievement if we could say that you were the driving force behind Oxfam NZ getting directly involved in the area?

 Hows about that for Making a Difference?!?!"    

    ---SCOTT YOUNG, Challenges Co-ordinator, 


How cool is that?  Imagine if we pull off a charity fund started by Unicyclists! NZ have kindly agreed to sponsor a webpage for online donations.  We'll have that set up shortly to allow people to sponsor the riders going on tour.


16 July 2005

I've just added a page of links.  Let me know if there is anything interesting you've come across....books, travel advice, training etc to out on the page.  I'll add some more links shortly.

Some of you have also been wondering about flights from Bangkok to Chiang Rai- there is a budget airline called Air Asia that let's you book online.  It will cost about US$12.  Their website: Air Asia

We're still aiming to have everybody registered by August.  We may close registrations then as it's looking like we will exceed our 12 rider target.  Check out the riders page for updates on who's coming on the trip.  What a fantastic mix of people!

30 June 2005

A couple of links that you might like to check out:

The first link is the Danish Unicycle tour- happening in a couple of weeks I believe!  The website is in Danish, but from what I can make out, 18 riders will be riding the length of Denmark.  Looks an awefully long way....

The second link is the Alps Unicycle tour, happening in August.  Check the trip blog on the AUT website to keep up with our European Adventures.  As I will be riding in this tour- it will be slightly difficult to get hold of me in August.  I might not reply immediately!  

By the way, judging by the responses so far, we'll be going to Laos with a bunch of cannibals!


29 June 2005

I might just need to clarify something before people send in their registrations.  The Laos Unitour account is in NZ$, simply because to open a US$ account is too costly.  But the travel company are charging in US$.  So what we need is the equivalent amount of US$250 deposit, but in NZ$, at the current exchange rate.  If you live in Europe, then just work out what the US$ amount is equivalent to in NZ$, then convert your Euros directly into NZ$ for the transfer.  Don't convert Euros to US$ then to NZ$....

If you live in New Zealand, there is no need to convert to US$ and then reconvert it to NZ$!  We will just convert it to US$ later this year.  If you are from Australia or USA, let me know before sending in deposits- it might pay to send them together with other people from your country to save on wire transfer fees.

I hope that made cents.  Let me know if you have any Q's



23 June 2005

Ok, registrations are now coming in at a steady pace, but we're aiming to have everybody registered by August. There is still a lot of work to do, and we need to know who is coming in order to plan for an effective trip, and open things like the Charity Challenge, trip route (we may need to tweak this a bit), T-shirts etc, for discussion.  So here are the cut-off dates:

23 May- Registration begins.  A big warm bear-hug to those that registered already!  Be in to win the tour mascot if you register before 1 August.   
1 August- Late fee of US$50 applies ( and biscuits for those that register early)
1 October- Registrations close for good.  Exceptions only with suitable bribe/dowry/naming rights to your firstborn
1 November- Zog says....where's Johnny???? Sell your soul to come on tour
1 December- remaining balance for the LUT due

20 June 2005 

Big fat smooches to the NZ Unicycle Federation- we've just been given space on their forums.  Post your thoughts and ideas about the upcoming tour.

15 June 2005

Wow, looking good so far- the tour has had interest from all over the world- USA, Singapore, Switzerland, Australia and New Zealand; lot's of different people of all ages, experience and cultures.  This is going to make it quite unique (as if it weren't already)!  Registrations are slowly rolling in, but please get them in early- we're keen to get on to the fun organising the charity challenge, video documenatry, T-shirts/stickers etc.

Also, keep this page bookmarked- we'll have regular updates from the riders and organisers as we prepare for the challenge.  And feel free to post on the Guestbook, the group would love to hear from friends/family as we count down to the LUT.

Tour Mascot: It's a toss up between a fluffy monkey and Winnie the Pooh.

22 May 2005

We're online!!!!  After months of speculation, hair pulling, and drinking too much coffee, we officially launch the The Laos Unicycle Tour.  This project started as an idea between myself, Ken Looi, and Jason Williams, an adventure guide based in Thailand.  We met during my cycle tour of Cambodia in 2004, in order to raise money for the OXFAM charity cycle challenge.  Jason was leading our group of 35 cyclists, including one unicyclist, as we rode 500km from Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, to Siem Reap in Cambodia.  It was the best experience of my life!  Imagine riding a unicycle through villages and towns in Cambodia- places that rarely see foreign cycle-tourists, let alone a guy riding past on one wheel!  Everywhere I stopped I was mobbed!  It was a trip filled with so much fun, culture and mayhem that it can't be put into words.  A unicycle is the ideal conversation piece- nothing cuts across the language barrier like someone riding past on one wheel.

Unicycle+Travel+Adventure+Different Cultures = Something too good to miss!!!!

Naturally I was keen to repeat this style of travelling, but instead of being the sole unicyclist amongst a group of bicyclists, I wanted to take a unicyclist only group, through a never-before-unicycled-country, for an epic/fantastic/crazy/out-of-this-world Adventure Unicycle ride!