Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 22 of 22
  1. #1
    Below Par Bikernator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Broken Arrow, OK
    My Bikes
    '08 Giant Rincon
    Posts
    116
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    'Dry' cold vs. 'humid' cold....

    I was born and raised in Oklahoma, and we never really deal with very much 'cold' weather. We hit the teens a bit, but not usually as highs, nor for extended periods of time. I have a pretty high tolerance for cold, I'm very hot-blooded and like to be in colder weather.

    I've been doing a job in Milwaukee, WI for a few weeks, where the temps have been quite cold. A lot of time spent in the singe digits and teens as highs have not been rare. The thing is, it doesn't 'feel' that cold, say as temperatures a bit warmer in Tulsa.

    Some locals have mentioned in passing that it's whether it's a 'dry' cold that makes it cold of not. I have no idea what this means. What does this mean, and is this 'dry' or 'humid' cold? Does this even makes sense? I thought maybe I was just getting used to it...?

    I know exactly what dry and humid heat is. I have more experience with that than I care to think about.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    NE OK
    My Bikes
    '06 Kona Smoke
    Posts
    7,986
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    UA posted something similar in his thread about the differences in cold temps between CO and MI.

    And I know what you're talking about as far as the weather in Tulsa. It snowed back on Dec. 24, and there is still snow on the ground. That's not including the piles in parking lots. I'll take snow over the usual freezing rain anytime.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  3. #3
    Senior Member Michigander's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    My Bikes
    Giant ATX 1200, Schwinn Peleton
    Posts
    1,727
    Mentioned
    13 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've never found it to make a difference whether it's humid or not, or whether you're at 10,000 feet or a little over sea level. Cold sucks.
    Bring back the Sig Test!


    (\__/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")

  4. #4
    AEO
    AEO is offline
    Senior Member AEO's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    A Coffin Called Earth. or Toronto, ON
    My Bikes
    Bianchi, Miyata, Dahon, Rossin
    Posts
    12,255
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    dry cold: keep your feet and legs warm because the majority of your body heat will be sucked out from the ground. If you're on a bike, it's not a big deal since you won't be in direct contact with the ground. But if you're walking, it's important.

    humid cold: bundle up, the moisture in the air gets into your clothing, making the insulation of your clothing less effective. Avoid materials that trap water and humidity like cotton. It's similar in reason to not wearing cotton in the winter while riding a bike.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm

  5. #5
    Footballus vita est iamlucky13's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Portland, OR
    My Bikes
    Trek 4500, Kona Dawg
    Posts
    2,118
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Water in the air has a lot of heat capacity. As a result, it suck the heat out of you faster. It also tends to make things feel clammy.

    Also, I'm sure it's no surprise to you that wind has a huge effect on how cold it feels.

    The mid-west tends to have dry cold. Whenever I go to visit Chicago in January it may be cold 15-25 degrees, but I can fairly comfortably play basketball in a T-shirt. However, my lips and knuckles get ridiculously dry and chapped.

    There's also "dry" heat and "humid" heat. As with cold, dry heat tends to be more comfortable than humid heat, although the physics involved are slightly different.
    "The internet is a place where absolutely nothing happens. You need to take advantage of that." ~ Strong Bad

  6. #6
    Senior Member kknh3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    St. Charles, MO
    My Bikes
    Schwinn High Plains, Trek 750 Multi-Track, Schwinn Passage, Schwinn High Sierra
    Posts
    234
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    When I was in the USAF, I was stationed at Minot AFB, ND. Of course the winters there get quite cold at times. When I would talk with friends and family back home in Missouri, I would generally mention how cold it was up there. Invariably their response would always be, "But it's a dry cold." I always chuckled at that.

    I'm sure there is some difference between how the cold feels based upon the humidity to a point. However, I can personally attest to the fact that anything below zero Deg F is darned cold regardless of humidity. The lowest I saw while I was there was -38 Deg F with wind chills between -70 and -80. But it was a dry cold.

  7. #7
    Seor Member USAZorro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Carlisle, PA
    My Bikes
    1954 Hetchins M.O., 1959 Viking Severn Valley, 1970 Raleigh Pro, 1972 Fuji "The Finest", 1974 Raleigh Superbe&Comp, 1976 Raleigh Team Pro, 1994 Trek 830 MTB, 2000 Bob Jackson Arrowhead, Unicycle
    Posts
    13,034
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    With regard to air in the house, 60 degrees with some humidity feels warmer than 60 degrees with almost none. There must be some point at which the phenomenon reverses.
    The search for inner peace continues...

  8. #8
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    South Florida
    My Bikes
    Techna Wheelchair and a Sun EZ 3 Recumbent Trike
    Posts
    16,115
    Mentioned
    10 Post(s)
    Tagged
    4 Thread(s)
    I worked a contract haulng equipment for a joint venture between Gazprom and British Petroleum, laying in a gas pipeline in Siberia, and the coldest I ever saw there was -61F according to the thermometer, and officially, -54. The wind chills were -172 to -180 that day. It did get colder, but I wasn't there. The coldest ever wind chill recorded to date was in Vostock, RU, at -192. I did experience near that.

    It was so cold, they didn't allow us to run, because rubber tires would shatter (yes, shatter), and steel got brittle enough to have frame rails randomly snap on a bump. It was definitely a "dry" cold, though. If the temp had been raised to room temp, the level of moisture saturation would have been around 2% give or take. Air that cold can't hold much H2O vapor.
    Quote Originally Posted by kknh3 View Post
    When I was in the USAF, I was stationed at Minot AFB, ND. Of course the winters there get quite cold at times. When I would talk with friends and family back home in Missouri, I would generally mention how cold it was up there. Invariably their response would always be, "But it's a dry cold." I always chuckled at that.

    I'm sure there is some difference between how the cold feels based upon the humidity to a point. However, I can personally attest to the fact that anything below zero Deg F is darned cold regardless of humidity. The lowest I saw while I was there was -38 Deg F with wind chills between -70 and -80. But it was a dry cold.
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

  9. #9
    Peloton Dog patentcad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Chester, NY
    My Bikes
    2013 Scott Foil, 2009 Scott Addict R2, 2008 Cervelo P3 TT bike, 2008 Motobecane Fly Ti Hard Tail MTB
    Posts
    56,306
    Mentioned
    33 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Humid cold is colder than dry cold. I have an easier time staying warm when it's 20F and dry than when I'm riding in the 40F rain.

  10. #10
    Below Par Bikernator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Broken Arrow, OK
    My Bikes
    '08 Giant Rincon
    Posts
    116
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Well that makes a ton of sense now. After iamlucky's post it just sorta clicked. I guess I just never thought of it getting in my clothes, and am kinda disappointed in myself for not 'reversing' the dry/humid heat thing. Though I think it's sorta weird this is the first time I've EVER heard it, considering how often it's referred to in respect to heat....

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Montreal, Quebec
    My Bikes
    Litespeed Ultimate 2006, Litespeed Pisgah , Specialized Roubaix 2008, Trek Madone 2011
    Posts
    903
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I worked in a refinery in Fort McMurray which is 1200 miles north of Montreal and I've worked in a refinery in the East end of Montreal and I can tell you that winters in the East end of Montreal were much harder on my body. The damp wind off the St. Lawrence just cut right through me.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Will G's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Granbury, Texas
    Posts
    704
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I grew up in the high humidity of the southeast and lived for a couple years in the interior of Alaska. Alaska was definitely a dry severe cold, it didn't seem to be as miserable as just about freezing temps of the southeast.

    Two theories. 1) The humidity has something to do with it since moisture against the skin makes you feel colder. That moisture does not evaporate quickly in humid climates thus making it feel colder all the time. 2) People do a better job layering up clothing in colder temps and dress better for the conditions.
    Flying a jet is no different than riding a bicycle. It's just a lot harder to put baseball cards in the spokes.

  13. #13
    Domestic Domestique UnsafeAlpine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Michigan
    My Bikes
    Brand New Old Catamount! Schwinn Homegrown, Specialized FSR, Salsa Vaya, Salsa Chile Con Crosso
    Posts
    1,736
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Colorado has very low humidity (I melt in Chicago in the summer) and I am very comfortable even riding my bike in a t-shirt, a softshell jacket, and light fleece gloves in the low 20s. In MI, though, low 20s is thermal undies, mittens, and a couple of layers. As someone else said, water sucks heat out of your body faster and as a result, even though the temps are the same, you get colder more quickly.

  14. #14
    GATC
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    south Puget Sound
    Posts
    6,609
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Wet cold sucks and it's about all I've ever known in a life in the northeast and PNW. Dry cold I've only experienced often enough to marvel at. Dry colds I've been through have been persistent enough that the snow doesn't clump, it just keeps drifting.

  15. #15
    Footballus vita est iamlucky13's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Portland, OR
    My Bikes
    Trek 4500, Kona Dawg
    Posts
    2,118
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by kknh3 View Post
    When I was in the USAF, I was stationed at Minot AFB, ND. Of course the winters there get quite cold at times. When I would talk with friends and family back home in Missouri, I would generally mention how cold it was up there. Invariably their response would always be, "But it's a dry cold." I always chuckled at that.

    I'm sure there is some difference between how the cold feels based upon the humidity to a point. However, I can personally attest to the fact that anything below zero Deg F is darned cold regardless of humidity. The lowest I saw while I was there was -38 Deg F with wind chills between -70 and -80. But it was a dry cold.
    Yeah, you get down below about 0 Fahrenheit, and it doesn't really matter...first of all because it's so darn cold you're going to feel it either way, and secondly, because the absolute humidity, even at 100% relative humidity is almost nothing.

    One of my cousins just got transferred to Minot. Unsurprisingly, his first email on arrival was about the weather.
    "The internet is a place where absolutely nothing happens. You need to take advantage of that." ~ Strong Bad

  16. #16
    Riding my bike
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Bi-Coastal Bays (Boston & SF)
    My Bikes
    Giant TCR C2 / Bianchi "beater"
    Posts
    167
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by patentcad View Post
    Humid cold is colder than dry cold. I have an easier time staying warm when it's 20F and dry than when I'm riding in the 40F rain.
    What Pcad said.

    "Dry" makes it more comfortable at either temperature extreme. (Why do I stay on the east coast?)

  17. #17
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    25 miles northwest of Boston
    My Bikes
    Bottecchia Sprint
    Posts
    12,252
    Mentioned
    5 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    ugh I'll take humid cold anytime. lately the roads have been dry and salty and road dust has been horrible with temps in the teens and low 20s. sucking that stuff into my throat and lungs has not been fun
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  18. #18
    Domestic Domestique UnsafeAlpine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Michigan
    My Bikes
    Brand New Old Catamount! Schwinn Homegrown, Specialized FSR, Salsa Vaya, Salsa Chile Con Crosso
    Posts
    1,736
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
    ugh I'll take humid cold anytime. lately the roads have been dry and salty and road dust has been horrible with temps in the teens and low 20s. sucking that stuff into my throat and lungs has not been fun
    It's not dry in Boston.

  19. #19
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    25 miles northwest of Boston
    My Bikes
    Bottecchia Sprint
    Posts
    12,252
    Mentioned
    5 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    gag cough choke gasp ... uh OK ... if you say so ... gag cough choke gasp ...
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  20. #20
    Senior Member Keith99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    5,789
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by USAZorro View Post
    With regard to air in the house, 60 degrees with some humidity feels warmer than 60 degrees with almost none. There must be some point at which the phenomenon reverses.
    Ther are 2 things pulling in opposite directions. Moer water inhte air makes it a better conductor of heat, that has been discussed. But pulling in hte other direction is that the less water in the air the more quickly any sweat evaporates, that includes sweat you are not aware of. Really dry air has other problems, lots of static and also it will dry out any moist areas, so chapped lips, nore not so comfortable and dry mouth.

  21. #21
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Sacramento, California, USA
    My Bikes
    Ridley Excalibur, Gazelle Champion Mondial, On-One Pompino, Specialized Rock Hopper
    Posts
    30,053
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Cold and damp feels colder than cold and dry. When it's 39F and pea-soup foggy, that cold just gets into your bones.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  22. #22
    Domestic Domestique UnsafeAlpine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Michigan
    My Bikes
    Brand New Old Catamount! Schwinn Homegrown, Specialized FSR, Salsa Vaya, Salsa Chile Con Crosso
    Posts
    1,736
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
    gag cough choke gasp ... uh OK ... if you say so ... gag cough choke gasp ...
    You can talk about dry when the humidity is hovering somewhere in the teens...

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •