It WILL Be Snowing in Yellowstone this Weekend
Weather forecast calls for snow in Yellowstone in throughout the high country in Montana and Wyoming this weekend - June 5th thru 7th - and into Monday, too. It's already snowed in the Sierras - Lassen, Yosemite, and Kings Canyon.
Although June snows are not unusual in the Rocky Mountain high country, they almost always catch touring cyclists from the East and West coasts by surprise. Grumbles galore on the journals over at Crazyguy. Anyone out there should plan for lousy weather for the next three days.
Long Distance Cyclist
There were snow flurries up here in central Alberta yesterday morning ... just briefly ... so I wouldn't be at all surprised if there was snow in the Rockies up here too.
Went through Yellowstone a couple days ago and getting up at 5am and riding until noon when the rain started got me past the worst of it. In Ennis, Montana right right now and it's 35 F and snowing. Started out the day with a beautiful tailwind from the south and then it flipped 180 so the last 15 miles was into a nice, cold headwind with lots of rain. Gotta love spring time in the Rockies.
Thanks for your warnings on this topic. My son was driving/camping his way home (to Seattle) from college (in the Midwest) over the past 10 days. Originally he was going to drive through Yellowstone but thanks to your earlier warnings he/I were watching the weather so we routed him along I90 instead.
He had a fabulous drive -- he was car camping and hiking -- Badlands, Black Hills, Devil's Tower, Little Bighorn battlefield, etc. -- but steered clear of the high country.
You are welcome. Glad he had a great trip.
No need to be miserable when you can do something else.
I just got home Saturday morning from a trip to NE Wyoming and SE MT. We were campiing out. Thursday was beautiful. Friday it turned cold and felt like snow, but when we left Friday evening it was still dry. Back home in SD it was a cool, wet day with some rain. Not the best biking weather, but not really ncommon for this time of year.
Last edited by Ranger Dan; 06-08-09 at 09:59 AM.
Snowed here two days ago.
I bailed 6/11 from Lander headed north on the TransAm. I quit as a consequence of the weather: there's no point of touring if you can't see the scenery because of the clouds and the snow/rain on your glasses. And I was facing a 5000 foot climb up the Togwotee Pass! I had driving snow on the Lizard Head, Monarch, Hoosier, Loveland, passes and on the Trail Ridge Road. This year has been weather CRAZY!
Already planning for the GDR next year but I think I'll start (N to S) in mid-July.
Originally Posted by Cyclesafe
Don't do it north to south.
I have a few disagreement with Adventure Cycling and this is one of the biggies.
In the north, the period of heaviest precipitation is May-June and some of if may come as snow if it is a cool, late spring. If anything, the roads and trails will still be muddy. Late summer is drier with thunderstorms every third or fourth day, lovely meadows filled with wildflowers.
In the south, May-June is the end of the dry season. The weather is warm - sometimes even hot, but the roads have been at their driest for four months. The summer monsoon begins in mid-June and continues thru August. There is nothing worse than getting stuck on a bentonite road that is a sea of glue.
Two months is plenty of time.
If you start in early to mid June in the south, you can have the best possible weather all the way.
Plus - winds tend to be southerly - although that is less of a factor on the GDMBR.
PS - This has been one of the coldest, wettest springs in memory in the Intermountain West.