Author Topic: Evening and late-morning temperatures riding TransAmerica mid-June to mid-August  (Read 3787 times)

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Offline SaemiVald

Hi all,

I am planning a west-east TransAmerica tour between mid-June and mid-August. Have found a great deal of information on this forum including average temperatures (highs and lows).
However, I have not been able to figure out what kind of low temperatures I could expect in the late afternoons/evenings or in the early mornings, particularly in high altitudes.
I am not worried about the temperature during the night as I will carry camping equipment including an insulating sleeping mat and sleeping bag. However, I wonder what kind of clothing is needed for an early morning start and a late finish.
At which points along the route should I expect the coldest weather?

As an Icelander I am more worried about excessive heat but I would like to pack as light as possible and would find it extremely embarrassing (not to mention miserable) to be cold during long stretches of the trip.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Offline staehpj1

I did the TA west to east in that time frame.  I really only remember being really cold once when we went over a pass in the late evening.  Other years there may be more cold weather.

I do remember being extremely hot most of the way.  I really hate hot weather, but it seems to like me and show up where ever I tour.  We saw record or near record highs often during our TA, and the headlines were usually about the heat wave when we saw newspapers, so it wasn't a typical year.

Bottom line you need to be prepared for overnight lows around freezing and especially if you camp at altitude a bit lower sometimes.  You also need to be ready to deal with 100F heat.

Offline John Nelson

The coldest you will likely be on the TransAm while riding is descending Hoosier Pass (and perhaps a few other passes). You might be going 40 MPH in near-freezing weather. You'll need a good windbreaker or rain jacket. You can put non-cycling clothing underneath for warmth (or maybe even newspaper like the Tour de France riders of old did). If you like to start a daybreak or earlier, you may also need to have clothing suitable for near-freezing temperatures. I don't think you need to take anything special for that. Just wear everything you brought at the same time for a while. Full-fingered gloves and a lightweight stocking cap would probably be appreciated.

Offline Pat Lamb

Coldest on my TransAm was Guffey.  It was about 30F when we woke up, and our fingers were stiff and cold an hour later when we made the descent to the main road.  Fortunately, we turned up (towards Currant Creek Pass, IIRC) and warmed up.

Kansas and Missouri were hot.  I think it topped 100F every day but the first while crossing Kansas, with a peak around 106.  We made liberal use of motels (with air conditioning!) to cool down after  the day's ride.  It tended to get really hot about the time it got really windy, so riding from dawn until 1-2:00 usually worked well.

Offline RussSeaton

I am planning a west-east TransAmerica tour between mid-June and mid-August. Have found a great deal of information on this forum including average temperatures (highs and lows).
However, I have not been able to figure out what kind of low temperatures I could expect in the late afternoons/evenings or in the early mornings, particularly in high altitudes.
I am not worried about the temperature during the night as I will carry camping equipment including an insulating sleeping mat and sleeping bag. However, I wonder what kind of clothing is needed for an early morning start and a late finish.

I think we have some confusion about when the low temperatures occur during a day.  Usually the low temperature will occur at about sunrise.  5-6-7 AM.  About the time you are getting up and starting the riding for the day.  The low temperature does not happen when you are sleeping if you are an early riser and rider.

The late afternoons and early evenings (5-6-7 PM) are close to the hottest part of the day.  High will be about 3 PM and then it will "cool" off a couple degrees a couple hours later.

These high and low time ranges happen all year long, summer or winter.  With the exception of fronts blowing through or big changes in weather patterns.  If a front is blowing through, you could have the high at midnight and the low at noon.

As for the actual temperatures, read what the others said.  Lows of around freezing if you camp at the top of mountains in the Sierras or Rockies and highs of around 100 in the middle of the afternoon in the Midwest.

Offline jamawani

You can ship all your cold & cool weather stuff home once you get to Pueblo, Colorado.
(That will be just short of halfway into your trip.)
East of Pueblo you will pray for any relief from the heat.
East of central Kansas, you will also pray for relief from the humidity.

You can expect a few cool/cold snaps in the West in June -
Possibly the Cascades, Lolo Pass, Big Hole, MT, Yellowstone, and Hoosier.
The later in June you get, the less chance of anything serious.
You are, after all, Icelandic - but I have skied on fresh snow June more than once.

Whenever I tour in summer - I try to get 75% of my riding in before noon.
Then I chill out in a nice town park, library, or recreation area until evening.
The 2 hours before sunset is also a good time to ride - with light traffic.

Offline John Nelson

Coldest on my TransAm was Guffey.
Me too!

Offline SaemiVald

I am planning a west-east TransAmerica tour between mid-June and mid-August. Have found a great deal of information on this forum including average temperatures (highs and lows).
However, I have not been able to figure out what kind of low temperatures I could expect in the late afternoons/evenings or in the early mornings, particularly in high altitudes.
I am not worried about the temperature during the night as I will carry camping equipment including an insulating sleeping mat and sleeping bag. However, I wonder what kind of clothing is needed for an early morning start and a late finish.

I think we have some confusion about when the low temperatures occur during a day.  Usually the low temperature will occur at about sunrise.  5-6-7 AM.  About the time you are getting up and starting the riding for the day.  The low temperature does not happen when you are sleeping if you are an early riser and rider.

The late afternoons and early evenings (5-6-7 PM) are close to the hottest part of the day.  High will be about 3 PM and then it will "cool" off a couple degrees a couple hours later.

These high and low time ranges happen all year long, summer or winter.  With the exception of fronts blowing through or big changes in weather patterns.  If a front is blowing through, you could have the high at midnight and the low at noon.

As for the actual temperatures, read what the others said.  Lows of around freezing if you camp at the top of mountains in the Sierras or Rockies and highs of around 100 in the middle of the afternoon in the Midwest.

Great answer, thanks! It should have been obvious to me having been to the US multiple times but never into the mountains and I guess I would have figured this out after a couple of nights but knowing in advance will help reduce worries from now until I start.

Offline Bclayden

In June/July it’s light enough to begin riding at 5-530am. I’m a big fan of this as 5am starts are a huge advantage with little to no traffic, for the first few hours in the western states, and the wind and possible severe weather gets cranked up after noon when you will likely be finished for the day or nearly finished. As mentioned you can avoid the hottest part of the day this way too. The only disadvantage with the 5am starts is most small towns won’t have a place to grab a hot breakfast this early.  I’ve resorted to leftover cold pizza for many breakfasts...and if you’re a coffee drinker bring your own good coffee. Motels always have a coffee maker but their coffee is crap.

indyfabz

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Unless things have changed, the maps contain charts for selected locations that show average highs and lows and average rainfall by month.

Offline SaemiVald

Unless things have changed, the maps contain charts for selected locations that show average highs and lows and average rainfall by month.
Correct but my question was aimed at figuring out when the highs and lows within the day would be.

Offline RussSeaton

my question was aimed at figuring out when the highs and lows within the day would be.

Lows happen one hour before sunrise up to sunrise.  4-5-6 AM depending on the month.  Highs happen mid to late afternoon.  2-3-4 PM all year long.  Except of course if a front or major weather change is blowing through.  Then the highs or lows could happen at any time of day.