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best time of the year for east to west transamerica/western express route?

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best time of the year for east to west transamerica/western express route?

Old 03-12-13, 01:17 PM
  #26  
jamawani 
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GregW -

I'm not having a bad day.
It snowed yesterday and is a magnificent blue today.
Already been up in the mountains.

It's just that so many inexperienced people want to believe what they want to believe.
Check out the journals of those who hit the Rockies far too early or late to be prudent.
Not only do they risk brutal weather, but they are often guys riding on a shoestring budget.
Usually, they get help from a kindly local in a pick-up truck - often food and shelter, too.
(I have rescued my share of soaking, freezing, bedraggled riders, too.)


And for people from Atlanta or St. Louis -
Who really have no understanding of western winds -
Of the near total lack of cover - no trees to block -
The distances between communities.

I mention Atlanta because of the Weather Channel.
25 mph winds in Atlanta are newsworthy.
25 mph winds in Wyoming are a light breeze.

There ARE prevailing wind patterns in the West which impact riding.
They vary by location, topography, time of year, and time of day.

And yes, many of those who I stop to help -
Have been amazingly foolhardy and unprepared.
I am beginning to wonder why I bother.
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Old 03-12-13, 01:46 PM
  #27  
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Wow, jamawani, you sure have dramatic weather changes.

I looked at weatherspark's averages for Buffalo WY. That's a big change in cloud cover from April (quite cloudy) to August (very sunny).

From the second graph, May can have anywhere from freezing temps (15F to 32F) through warm (75F to 85F)

And lots of N, NW, and W winds all year.
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Old 03-12-13, 02:41 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by jamawani View Post
It's just that so many inexperienced people want to believe what they want to believe.
Check out the journals of those who hit the Rockies far too early or late to be prudent.
Not only do they risk brutal weather, but they are often guys riding on a shoestring budget.
Usually, they get help from a kindly local in a pick-up truck - often food and shelter, too.
(I have rescued my share of soaking, freezing, bedraggled riders, too.)

And yes, many of those who I stop to help -
Have been amazingly foolhardy and unprepared.
I am beginning to wonder why I bother.
If it bothers you that much to help people then simply don't. You're being so aggressive with your language that nobody is going to listen to you irregardless of what point you're trying to make. Who wants to listen to someone that is sitting there telling them they are an idiot?

Yes as a matter of fact, if you bike 4000 miles on a bicycle you may (should/will probably) come across some condition that you're not prepared for, but is that all bad? It's meant to be an adventure is it not? I think most tourers are fine at improvising. There is being informed, and then there's letting that information stop you from doing what you want to do.

Any well informed sane person wouldn't climb Everest or hang glide. Some of them may be well informed and are taking a calculated risk with the notion that they will improvise, and accept that risk. You have to on some level to hop on a bicycle in the first place.

Do you think people should simply always bike west to east on the transamerica trail because it's optimal for wind? . . . as Greg mentioned, there are so many factors in choosing that direction other than wind. In fact most people decide direction irregardless of wind before they even think about when they want to start, which is what the thread started as anyway. For me, living on the east coast my whole life was my biggest reason to ride west. It would be boring to me to bike home.
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Old 03-12-13, 07:12 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by juggleaddict View Post
I've read much on this, and as far as I can tell this is a rumor. The winds close to the ground are very different than the winds controlling fronts. I am no meteorologist, but I've read many a blog that say it makes no difference.
If you are going to quote someone, at least do the favor of quoting correctly.
In your case - you said "it makes no difference".
No where did I say that you should only bike west to east.
So please be accurate when you attribute statements to me.

What I did suggest is that there are significant differences
which should be considered as part of a larger framework.
Nuance and variation appear to be difficult concepts.

And, yes, there are times when I have called people idiots - myself included.
(In the self-reference, it is always after-the-fact.)
Sometimes it requires strong language to dissuade the uninformed.
Example - skiing on cornices on fresh snow after a long, dry, sunny interlude.
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Old 03-12-13, 07:27 PM
  #30  
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rm-rf - -

I love Buffalo - wouldn't trade it for the world.
And yes, conditions are extremely variable.
Last August it was in the high 90s one day, the 40s the next.
And that's August in town. Needless to say - the high elevations were colder.
I have seen it snow every month in the year.
July and August snows are rare and fleeting.
But June and Sept snows can be brutal.
May and October snows can be full-scale blizzards.

Most people from back East are unaware of such extremes.
May weather is hot dogs and barbeques and t-shirts.
I have seen all roads across the Bighorns closed in May by snow.
If you are stealth camping in the mountains - -
You just might wake up with snow crushing your tent -
No way to ride on the road - and no vehicles.
(Hopefully you will be able to find an outhouse in a campground.)

I may make it sound bad - it really is fabulous -
But it is when people push their luck when bad things often happen.
Note "often" - sometimes the grand piano just falls out of the sky.
But reasonable foreknowledge lets you enjoy all the incredible beauty that is out there.
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Old 03-12-13, 07:54 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by jamawani View Post
Actually, there is risk involved in riding against a constant headwind.
It's called exhaustion and it can impact judgment.
Originally Posted by jamawani View Post
People such as these DESERVE getting slammed by headwinds.
But be my guest - putz right along.
Sorry if I misjudged you. While you never said it directly, you basically called people stupid for choosing to go against the wind. This to me, along with the fact that you yourself never mentioned anything but the wind and weather suggested to me that your argument was to go with prevailing winds (and/or weather). You're clearly mad at something, and I'm really sorry if my original post upset you or anybody else.
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Old 03-12-13, 08:54 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by juggleaddict View Post
Sorry if I misjudged you. While you never said it directly, you basically called people stupid for choosing to go against the wind. This to me, along with the fact that you yourself never mentioned anything but the wind and weather suggested to me that your argument was to go with prevailing winds (and/or weather). You're clearly mad at something, and I'm really sorry if my original post upset you or anybody else.
I guess I get mad when people put themselves in bad situations unnecessarily.
The OP is new on the website, offers little info about himself, and posits a brisk schedule -
Which will get him into the Rockies by early to mid May.

Will he freeze to death? Probably not.
He might just even luck out with stunning weather.
But most likely he will have a rough spell or two.
And it could be really nasty.

It always blows my mind when people put time, money, and effort
Into a major bike tour - yet ride blindly into the storm.
Starting a few week later might make the difference
Between a great experience and one to be endured.

I realize there's an old story abour leading a horse to water -
I need to heed it more often.
And I apologize for any harsh words.
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Old 03-12-13, 09:14 PM
  #33  
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i think the OP checked out a while ago. probably halfway through Kentucky by now...
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