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Old 09-01-08, 12:04 PM   #1
AndrewCO
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Soon to be new to TX

Hello you Texans,

My wife and I are 97% likely to be moving to the DFW area in the next 2 weeks due to a new job.

We are looking at to live in either Haslet, Southlake or Keller. There are a few questions that my wife has asked me to put up here.


1. Any MUPS or bike trails in the area that would be good for a newbie (wife)?
2. Is it always blistering hot?
3. Is winter considered anything below 80?
4. Besides the obligatory hail and thunderstorms, does that area experience tornadoes that often?

Moving from Boulder-area of Colorado to there I know will be a system shock and I hope I make the saving throw..


Case in point for today:

Boulder, CO: 72.1 F / 22.3 C Condition: Scattered Clouds Humidity: 67%
Haslet, TX: 86.7 F / 30.4 C Condition: Haze Humidity: 41%
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Old 09-01-08, 12:15 PM   #2
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Those heat/humidity figures look a little low; might be the effect from Gustav, pulling dry air from the north. Today will not be typical weather in Texas. I will let DFW-area members be more specific; I am closer to the coast, surrounded by the beautiful sprawl of the urban amoeba called Houston. There is a front headed toward Texas now; check the weather stats after it has passed, over several days. Welcome to Texas!
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Old 09-01-08, 12:28 PM   #3
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I currently live in Austin, but lived in Dallas for about 8 years before I moved here. Weather wise, I'd get mentally prepared for 6 months of summer each year. You'll only be experiencing the tail end of it for this year. Look for the first real break in summer weather in mid to late October.

On the other hand, winters are great with stretches of highs in the 70s and lows in the 50s sometimes for weeks at a time. There are cold snaps when Arctic fronts come our way, but they don't last long in general.

As for tornados, you are in tornado alley, but there are not nearly as many as in West Texas or Oklahoma. There will be tornado warnings with most heavy summer storms, but the weather guys love to get face time on TV with these warnings and the likelihood of encountering said tornados are rare. The one bad thing is the vast majority of homes are built without basements due to soil conditions, so if one really hits you are SOL. There are above ground tornado shelters you can have built (often into a closet or bathroom) if it is truly a worry to you.
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Old 09-01-08, 12:36 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bikinpolitico View Post
I currently live in Austin, but lived in Dallas for about 8 years before I moved here. Weather wise, I'd get mentally prepared for 6 months of summer each year. You'll only be experiencing the tail end of it for this year. Look for the first real break in summer weather in mid to late October.

On the other hand, winters are great with stretches of highs in the 70s and lows in the 50s sometimes for weeks at a time. There are cold snaps when Arctic fronts come our way, but they don't last long in general.

As for tornados, you are in tornado alley, but there are not nearly as many as in West Texas or Oklahoma. There will be tornado warnings with most heavy summer storms, but the weather guys love to get face time on TV with these warnings and the likelihood of encountering said tornados are rare. The one bad thing is the vast majority of homes are built without basements due to soil conditions, so if one really hits you are SOL. There are above ground tornado shelters you can have built (often into a closet or bathroom) if it is truly a worry to you.


Excellent. I grew up near Xenia, Ohio, which is in the end of the "Tornado Alley" east of the Mississippi. Also grew up with summers where it was 100F/100% humidity most days for about 4-5 months. Nothing beats the Boulder Valley for weather year round as we don't get crazy hot or freezing cold year round. I see the DFW as being a cross between the two, but I am typically wrong about this.
I asked about tornadoes as people say they happen alot, yet friends of the family have lived in Southlake for about 20 years and has never seen a tornado or funnel cloud during their tenure there.
My main complaint will be that I love the cold and snow, so I will be very troubled I think. My wife on the other hand, will love it as she hates anything below 75, but also hates tornadoes/thunderstorms more... This should be entertaining.
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Old 09-01-08, 12:45 PM   #5
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Im near your future area. The tornadoes are not too plentiful there. There are MUPs in Dallas, FW and
a few cities in between, but I havent seen any the times Ive driven through Keller and Southlake.

We dont have 80 degree winters as a rule, and we dont call under-80 'winter'. Its just nice weather
that gets everyone and their dog to come outside. In DFW we usually have 1 or 2 snows in the winter.
Otherwise its just cold, pissy rain. Its kind of like a summer storm in the Scottish highlands.

Hail doesnt really occur that often, but we do have rain storms like its the end of the world. When
you get in your first one just remember that its normal around here.

We have a Bikeforums meet-and-greet dinner a couple times a year for DFW. We typically
pick a location in the mid-cities so its centrally located for the whole area.
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Old 09-01-08, 01:21 PM   #6
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Hello you Texans,

Moving from Boulder-area of Colorado to there I know will be a system shock and I hope I make the saving throw..
I'm so sorry......

But the good thing about the DFW area... the cost of living is cheaper.

The DFW area can't compete with Boulder in the MUT area... or of course the scenery.
I live in Dallas close to WRL, so I'm not to sure about that area, I think there are some good country roads. Here is a good bike shop in that area: http://bicyclesinc.com/ They might can help you.

You get used to the heat, just ride early is the main thing. There are lots of people that ride, quite a big cycling community, lots of rally's in the summer..... and I've lived here all my life and haven't seen a tornado yet.
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Old 09-01-08, 05:27 PM   #7
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Welcome to the area, assuming you make it.

As to your questions:
1. Any MUPS or bike trails in the area that would be good for a newbie (wife)?
There are MUP's around, but they're not nearly as plentiful as you might like. Meaning, you may or may not find yourself living anywhere near one. Dallas has a few, Plano does, but I don't know about the Southlake area and out that way. I do know one of the more popular mountain biking trails is the North Shore Trail on Lake Grapevine. "Mountain Biking" down here means "off road biking", by the way. The North Shore Trail is about 95% flat and level and easy, with a little hard spot about every half mile that you can walk past if you need to. There is a pretty good trail system around Fort Worth. When dealing with the MUP's, figure they're for recreation, as they're unlikely to actually go anywhere that you need to go, and you'll probably have to drive to get to them.

2. Is it always blistering hot? No, that's only ten months out of the year. The other two months, it's pleasantly cool. Actually, it's about as blistering hot here as it is freezing cold in Boulder. Meaning if you live there and deal with it, no big problem. If you've never experienced it, you may think it's terrible. We lived in Fort Collins for 5 years and liked it just fine, but I've actually met a number of people down here that simply won't ever move to that area because it's too cold. Go figure. One thing to notice, though. In Colorado, the prettiest time of year, especially in the mountains, is mid-summer. And the most pleasant weather is mid-summer. It's great. Down here, the prettiest time of year is mid-summer. And the most pleasant weather is mid-winter. So it's a bad match that way. Anyway, the secret is to get out and do things anyway, and do what you can to get acclimated to the heat. It won't happen over night. If you move in late fall, it'll be easier on you. It is more humid down here, and it doesn't get cool at nights like it does up there, and you may notice those as much as the heat itself.

3. Is winter considered anything below 80? Winter is a part of the calendar unrelated to the weather.

4. Besides the obligatory hail and thunderstorms, does that area experience tornadoes that often?
I lived in Lubbock from 1979-1985, lived in the DFW area from 1985-1993 and 1998-present. I've NEVER seen a tornado. I've seen hail, but never kept my car in a garage, and have never had hail damage. So yeah, there's tornados, but they're not that common here in the DFW area. It's not something you sit around and worry about.

A couple of things that seemed odd to me after moving back down here: Lightening in the morning. Thunderstorms in the winter. Rain in the winter. You just don't have those things up in the Boulder area, but you do down here. We lived in CO for 5 years, and I never had to use my windshield wipers on "high" for a rain, if that tells you anything.

Anyway, I've learned that people's enjoyment of a place has more to do with the people than it does with the place. Come down here and make it a point to enjoy it and you will. Come down here and look for reasons to complain, and you'll find that, too.
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Old 09-01-08, 05:50 PM   #8
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Thanks Stephen...

The more I think about it, it should be cooler than it was in south/central Ohio. At least when you take the humidity into account.

However, I do like the cooler evenings here when the wind blows. Stupid job being so tempting....

Well, I ride all over the place here, so I hope I can find something similar there on the west side.
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Old 09-03-08, 09:28 PM   #9
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Well I hope you can make it to the great State of Texas. StephenH is right on. I've lived here all my life and never seen a tornado. You just don't worry about that stuff. You and your wife will get used to the heat. It's not too bad, you might even like it. A lot of people that come here from "up north" like it!

If you live here, you can put the skin moisteurizer away. Your skin won't dry out, crack up, and fall off like it does up there... and no nose bleeds either.

Someone mentioned snow. It has snowed 3 or 4 times that last couple of years, but it is extremely unusual for this area. And, it melts real fast. It usually gets barely below 32 degrees about 2 or 3 days in Jan or Feb and that's about it.
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Old 09-03-08, 10:27 PM   #10
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When we moved to Colorado, one thing I noticed was that the winter days were noticeably shorter due to being farther north. It's not a big difference, but noticeable.

Down here, for reasons unknown to me, they don't normally build houses with basements, which was the norm up there. Never figured out exactly why.

On the tornado threat, let me put it in perspective. When we lived up there, they had a flood in Fort Collins that killed one or two people and did a lot of damage to the CSU library. And we read all about the Big Thompson flood years back that killed a bunch of people. Well, from those two incidents, you might come to the conclusion that the whole front range is just a flood disaster waiting to happen, and of course that's really not the case. But the DFW area has had about as much tornado damage as that area had flood damage. So it's there, but not the norm.
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Old 09-04-08, 06:13 AM   #11
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Welcome as a person who has lived in DFW for 15 years, 9 months, 4 days, and 7 hours I can say some day you will get used to it. Overall it has a lot of cool things, lots of activities avaibale year around including cycling, road, a few MUPS, and even over 250 miles of off road ridings. The mids cities area IMHO is a great place to live, a littel less traffic than the east side, but you can still get there by bike or public transportation to avoid the traffic to get some urban culture. Easy access to the west side for some cowboy culture. Most folks are great, and starting to understand the "new" bike craze.

Oh yea origionaly from Michigan, with several years military and world travel thrown in, so it was a bit of a change for me to adjust to, but I'm almost there
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Old 09-04-08, 06:27 AM   #12
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Welcome to Texas. I just signed up for the forum and I live in Fort Worth.
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Old 09-04-08, 07:31 AM   #13
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Down here, for reasons unknown to me, they don't normally build houses with basements, which was the norm up there. Never figured out exactly why.
Stretches of 100+ heat with no rain followed by some torrential rain does odd things to soil. Any wonder that one of the most popular radio advertisers down here are foundation repair companies?

On a slab foundation with settling damage, you get some big cracks in walls, doors and windows that go out of alignment, etc. If you had basements, the damage would be much more dangerous.
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Old 09-04-08, 08:01 AM   #14
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I'm so sorry......

But the good thing about the DFW area... the cost of living is cheaper.
Unless you plan on buying house, then expect to pay out the nose on taxes.

When I moved to Texas from CO, it took me a while to get adjusted to the humidity and fact that the nights don't cool off like they do in CO.

There are plenty of nice things about living in Texas, Welcome.
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Old 09-04-08, 11:13 AM   #15
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We didn't own a house in CO, so I don't know how the taxes compare. It seemed like houses were more expensive there than here, though.

Texas does not have a state income tax, so you'll pick up some money there.
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Old 09-04-08, 11:16 AM   #16
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The biggest problem here when it comes to winter weather is ice storms which are pretty
common throughout the south. Believe me, learning to drive in sleet or snow is no preparation for
driving on ice. Fortunately we don't get those all too often.

Let us know when y'all get down here and we can arrange a meet 'n greet.

Marty
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Old 09-04-08, 03:08 PM   #17
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it looks like it snows up in north texas sometimes. so winter isn't classified as anything below 80. thats reserved for south texas lol
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Old 09-04-08, 03:34 PM   #18
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Unless you plan on buying house, then expect to pay out the nose on taxes.

When I moved to Texas from CO, it took me a while to get adjusted to the humidity and fact that the nights don't cool off like they do in CO.

There are plenty of nice things about living in Texas, Welcome.
The property taxes here (Frisco) are exactly as they were in the NW Suburbs of Chicago - plus you get a 3% state income tax in IL, and the sales tax in that area is 10%. Oh, and the humidity was much worse around Chicago as well - may only get to 90 degrees on a typical summer day, but the humidity is 85% and you can't stay cool even in the shade.

One thing that was weird here - being able to (more or less) comfortably ride my bike each and every weekend for the entire winter last year - we missed one Saturday if I recall.
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Old 09-05-08, 09:31 PM   #19
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Don't do it!

I guess I am going to be the naysayer here, but let me just say DON'T DO IT!

You have no idea how much of a good thing you have there in Boulder, as compared to north Texas, the land of endless ugly pavement. I used to live in both Dallas and Lewisville and I go there for personal and business trips frequently. Austin is supposed to be the best cycling town in Texas, and we're third-rate at best, so just imagine how bad it will be for you.

And that's just the general infrastructure and driver attitudes... then there's the weather...
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Old 09-05-08, 10:55 PM   #20
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1. Any MUPS or bike trails in the area that would be good for a newbie (wife)?

The Trinity River in and around downtown Fort Worth has trails alongside. I live on the south side of Fort Worth and rode the trails this afternoon to get to downtown. Here's a link to a map: Click

2. Is it always blistering hot?


It was actually quite pleasant this morning. On my way to work at about 7:30, it was in the 60s. When I rode this afternoon (I had half the day off), it was still nice- in the 80s. I am no fan of the heat and I will admit that once the summer really kicks in, I'm pretty miserable. I try to bicycle to work when I can, and I find that I can ride the ~10 miles home in temperatures up to almost 100 degrees, which leaves about a month out of the year that's too hot to commute. I started the bicycle commuting thing in February, and the weather is good enough to commute at least a couple days a week.

3. Is winter considered anything below 80?

If you're used to a full-blown winter (Boulder, or in my case, my native Buffalo, NY), there isn't much of a winter here. About a week of ice a year. When we first moved here, we were coming from Los Angeles and compared to that shopping mall climate we very much enjoyed the change of seasons here.

4. Besides the obligatory hail and thunderstorms, does that area experience tornadoes that often?

Yes. But tornadoes that are as bad as that link shows are quite rare. There are tornadoes in the area every year, but they are mostly smaller and only cause very localized damage.

Moving to Haslet, Southlake or Keller? They are nice bedroom communities, but very typical of urban sprawl. To each his own. At least Haslet, Southlake and Keller aren't Dallas.
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Old 09-07-08, 09:03 AM   #21
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You'll be looking at the Bear Creek trail that runs along Keller and partially into Southlake and I think park of Fort Worth by 377. As a Colleyviller, I know the Keller and Southlake area very well. Southlake is nice, in fact, probably one of the better cities in Tarrant County (next to Colleyville ). Winter isn't bad at all, and biking when it's 50 out is common there. And as for tornadoes, not common ever in northeast Tarrant Co., but has affected Fort Worth, Mansfield, and Haltom City.
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